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The Good House: A Novel by Ann Leary

The Good House: A Novel (edition 2013)

by Ann Leary

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4263424,790 (3.85)22
Title:The Good House: A Novel
Authors:Ann Leary
Info:St. Martin's Press (2013), Edition: First Edition, Hardcover, 304 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:fiction, ebook

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The Good House by Ann Leary



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This was a book about a woman named Hildy. She was a real estate agent. She loved her drink. Then one day her two daughters set up an intervention with her and sent her to Rehab. This book was heart breaking at times. I had a brother who struggled with alcohol. The way they portrayed Hildy and the way her mind worked was so realistic.

I had a couple of quotes I liked in the book, but my favorite was: "You can't remove a persons denial from them. Denial is like a blanket surrounding a person who's well, almost naked underneath. You just can't pull it off them. You just can't expose them to the cold and all that shame. A person can only remove it for herself when she's ready." ( )
1 vote bwhitner | Feb 2, 2015 |
This was my first book by Ann Leary and she has definitely made my favorite author status! (Cannot wait to read her previous books)! The audio version was amazing-- the narrator (Mary Beth Hurt) was ideal for the part, creating the character Hildy Good, as the captivating darkly comic 60 yr old real estate broker who has a thumb on the town, to the letter. (Even if you have read the book, it is worth buying the audio).

The author was so engaging, offering tidbits keeping you in suspense for the next chapter. (I also loved the mentions of Palm Beach since live in the area (could picture the setting in Wellington at the International Polo Club or the Winter Equestrian Festival).

I was so excited to learn about the movie based on this best-selling novel – cannot wait to see the reuniting of Meryl Streep (Hildy) and Robert De Niro (Frank)– what a dynamic duo and so fitting!

The novel was told through the eyes of Hildy Good, a New England real estate broker, a (not) so recovering alcoholic who becomes friends with wealthy Rebecca McCallister. (I listened to the interview with the author and appears the original basis of the book was to be centered around Rebecca/Peter’s affair). However, delighted she utilized the characters of Hildy and Frank which took center stage as Good was definitely the main attraction!

Set in New England in a small town on Boston’s North Shore, Hildy is a successful real estate broker, mother and grandmother and an alcoholic. After rehab and her intervention from family, she decides she will be better served by drinking in moderation rather than abstinence, which of course is not working…..

While in complete denial, she soon finds herself drinking more and more (turning to wine) versus the hard stuff. In the midst of keeping her real estate business afloat, she befriends (crazy and stalker) Rebecca who is in love with her shrink Peter (a lifelong friend of Hildy), combined with past scandals, and a love story with funny garbage man (who is really wealthy) Frank (you will love him). This book will keep you laughing all the way through with Hildy’s witty comments.

A riveting page-turner novel, packed with small town gossip, eccentric characters, affairs, psychic powers, home buyers, child with a disability who goes missing, wine cellars, drunk driving, gay ex-husband Scott, skinny dipping, rekindled love, black out episodes of an alcoholic, friendships and hangovers. Leary created an entire town of gregarious characters and plot planning was excellent – A must read for 2013 as book of the year!! Looking forward to reading more from this author and the upcoming movie release.

( )
1 vote JudithDCollins | Nov 27, 2014 |
Great book by Ann Leary, Dennis Leary's wife. ( )
  Kappadeemom | Oct 27, 2014 |
With a small-town, New England, setting and an author with the ability to write settings like Ms. Leary, I felt as though I was right there with the protagonist, Hildy. Hildy refused to believe she is an alcoholic and, after a stint in rehab, continues to drink wine then slowly progresses to other alcohol again. This novel grabbed me at the start. I was routing for her to be sober and to overcome the obstacles in her life. She was an interesting woman, a successful realtor, a mother and grandmother, and the ex-wife of a gay man.

Ms. Leary comes up with very strong characters who are well-developed and make you feel as though you know them. I like Ms. Leary's writing style and enjoyed this novel. I hope to read more books by her. ( )
  pegmcdaniel | May 9, 2014 |
With more than ten started but yet to finish books on my nightstand, it felt great to pick this up and read it in one day. I was put off somewhat by the description on the back but was sucked into this novel after just the first page. Hildy Good is a very flawed person, (like anyone alive tends to be), and that is what makes her so compelling. You want to believe her even when she is lying to herself. ( )
  viviennestrauss | Apr 19, 2014 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Ann Learyprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hurt, Mary BethNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mary Beth HurtNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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I can walk through a house once and know more about its occupants than a psychiatrist could after a year of sessions.
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"The Good House tells the story of Hildy Good, who lives in a small town on Boston's North Shore. Hildy is a successful real-estate broker, good neighbor, mother, and grandmother. She's also a raging alcoholic. Hildy's family held an intervention for her about a year before this story takes place--"if they invite you over for dinner, and it's not a major holiday," she advises "run for your life"--and now she feels lonely and unjustly persecuted. She has also fooled herself into thinking that moderation is the key to her drinking problem. As if battling her demons wasn't enough to keep her busy, Hildy soon finds herself embroiled in the underbelly of her New England town, a craggy little place that harbors secrets. There's a scandal, some mysticism, babies, old houses, drinking, and desire--and a love story between two craggy sixty-somethings that's as real and sexy as you get. An exceptional novel that is at turns hilarious and sobering, The Good House asks the question: What will it take to keep Hildy Good from drinking? For good"--… (more)

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