Reader reviews and comments on The Last Time They Met, plus links to write your own review.

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The Last Time They Met

by Anita Shreve

The Last Time They Met by Anita Shreve X
The Last Time They Met by Anita Shreve
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  • First Published:
    Apr 2001, 320 pages
    Paperback:
    Jan 2002, 320 pages

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There are currently 59 reader reviews for The Last Time They Met
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Kay (06/29/05)

I didn't want to love it, but I did!!!
I started this book with great doubts, but was immediately swept off my feet by Shreve. My book club disliked it, so I am so excited to have found the previous reviews - they validated my feelings.
I finished this book one morning last week, sobbed for half an hour, and then was depressed the rest of the day. I felt as if I were in mourning! I thought Thomas' character was wonderful...I didn't like him at first, but by the end I was half in love with him. Shreve's development was fantastic, especially given that the book reads backward...I agree with the above reviewer who felt the psychological transition was not inconsistent, but wholly explained by the events of his Thomas' life.
Complaints: I felt the sex was heavy-handed, especially in the first section [remainder of this section deleted by BookBrowse to avoid plot spoilers]. Overall I loved it, but I wish I could stop thinking about it - it's getting distracting. I started "Weight of Water" and am loving that too!
Mary (03/22/04)

The ending of "The Last Time They Met" left me absolutely astounded. What a clever writer to have blindsided her readers so thoroughly! Though, when I went back and reread passages from "The Weight of Water, " I found that the answer was actually there, so the author must be either counting on the reader forgetting or reading "The Last Time They Met" first. Anyway, I thought it was first rate. I recommend it highly -- just don't peek at the last page!
Michelle (03/10/04)

It has been a long time since a book has left me shocked and sobbing. I bought "The Last Time They Met" on a whim, and I am so glad I did. Anita Shreve knows exactly how to make you care for her characters as close friends. Yes, I agree with others that her style can sometimes distract the reader with its lengthy prose passages. However, the imagery she presents is necessary to create the feeling that Thomas and Linda live in their own world, separate in so many ways from the people around them. And the ending further justifies the need for the atmosphere within which the story is told. Even if the descriptive writing is not your style, it is worth it to read through to the end. I am going to pick up The Weight of Water as soon as I can!
KayKay (01/22/04)

The only reason I give it a 4 is because the writing style was a bit "flowery" and made reading it just a tad difficult at times to concentrate on; however, the ending was superb! The book will stay with me for a very long time. It spoke to my soul and had me thinking about my own life and the "what ifs" surrounding it. Great!!
Susan (01/20/04)

The Last Time They Met is the most powerful and evocative book I have ever read. I have read all of Anita Shreve's novels, but this is my favourite and have read it several times. The ending was so heart wrenching and shocking it still brings tears to my eye. I highly recommend this novel and will be reading it again and again in years to come.
DepressedFanatic (01/13/04)

An inspiring book that expresses life through hardship.A quality that is esy to find with most novels,but sense of uniqueness on behalf of ms Anita.
Anonymous (01/06/04)

I just took some time to read several reviews of Anita Shreves "The Last Time They Met" I am glad to see I am not the only one dumbfounded with the ending. I re-read the ending and speculated that Thomas <<edited for potential plot spoiler>>. To me, the ending diminished the genuineness of the love itself.
Minnesota Reader (12/30/03)

Having just completed this book, I am still stunned by the ending. I was totally at a loss in predicting Shreve's astonishing finish. I initially began reading, "The Last Time They Met," then stopped one quarter of the way through to read, "The Weight of Water," realizing "Water," came first. I am glad I did since Thomas' story is first introduced in, "The Weight of Water." (If you have read, "The Weight of Water," or plan to, please visit:http: //www.seacoastnh.com/smuttynose/index.html for information on the actual events.)

Another reviewer criticizes Thomas' personality, wondering why Linda would want to be with him in the first place. However, Shreve, with an adept understanding of human psyche, handles his personality change from teen to adult with expertise. It could happen to the best of us given his circumstances.

I was also impressed with her use of italics during Linda and Thomas' conversations at 52 and 26, and then quotations as teens. This odd writing style makes perfect sense by the last page. This is easily one of the best books I have read. One doesn't have to adore the ending to appreciate a well-written novel. This book put simply, makes you think.

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