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

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reading Guide |  Reviews |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

The Last Time They Met

by Anita Shreve

The Last Time They Met
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Apr 2001, 320 pages
    Jan 2002, 320 pages

  • Rate this book

Buy This Book

About this Book


Page 2 of 8
There are currently 58 reader reviews for The Last Time They Met
Order Reviews by:

Write your own review!

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: // 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.
Anonymous (12/08/03)

Can you say 'cheesy, Lifetime television for women'?

The unrealistic drama drove me crazy. I finally had to put the book down when I read of Thomas explaining to Linda of his wife's affair and she commented <<edited for potential plot spoiler>>. Come on! A dead husband, a divorce, an abortion, a dead child, and an alcoholic gay son, all within the first 80 pages! I found this all hard to stomach. I was afraid to read any further for fear of more deaths and the like.
The reviews praise the author for her style of telling the story from the present day to the past, but I found Anita Shreve's style of telling the story backwards, distracting. There was no way of telling when she was talking about the present day or the past. I was forced to read pages over again to really figure out what she was talking about.

Over all, I would have to give a big thumbs down for "The Last Time They Met". The woman in my book group who recommended this will be reprimanded harshly.

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member
and discover your next great read!

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: So Say the Fallen
    So Say the Fallen
    by Stuart Neville
    Noir crime fiction – Raymond Chandler, Dashiell Hammett anyone? – is an American invention...
  • Book Jacket: The Mothers
    The Mothers
    by Brit Bennett
    Every now and then the publishing industry gushes about a young author destined to become the next ...
  • Book Jacket
    by Tom Jackson
    Growing up in Mumbai in the '70s, I still remember herbs kept fresh in small glasses of water, ...
Book Discussions
Book Jacket
The Bone Tree
by Greg Iles

An epic trilogy of blood and race, family and justice.

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    News of the World
    by Paulette Jiles

    Exquisitely rendered and morally complex--a brilliant work of historical fiction.

    Read Member Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    Cruel Beautiful World
    by Caroline Leavitt

    A fast moving page-turner about the naiveté of youth and the malignity of power.

    Read Member Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    The Comet Seekers
    by Helen Sedgwick

    A magical, intoxicating debut novel, both intimate and epic.

    Read Member Reviews

Win this book!
Win The World of Poldark

Win the book & DVD

Enter to win The World of Poldark and the full first series on DVD.


Word Play

Solve this clue:

One S D N M A S

and be entered to win..

Books that     

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.


Free Weekly Newsletter

Keep up with what's happening in the world of books:
Reviews, previews, interviews and more!

Spam Free: Your email is never shared with anyone; opt out any time.