Friday, October 5, 2012

Seems Like Old Times by Joanne Pence

Seems Like Old Times left me squirming the way we do when we recognize characteristics in a character that we don't necessary like about ourselves. Well, that's not quite true, perhaps its more accurate to say characteristics we thought we'd "outgrown" as we matured. The defenses we built to shut out love and true happiness often become mired in what we call reality though it's not really. As I read about Lee's struggles to become the woman she wanted to be I recognized my own struggles to please and find my place in the world. As I read of the love she and Tony shared and she abandoned, my heart ached for lost love yet I recognized my own reluctance to accept love at a young age. Seems Like Old Times is a love story that will strike at the heart of anyone who has ever loved and walked away from a love the heart refused to forget. Sometimes, just as Lee did, we make the decisions we feel we must in the moment, but we sacrifice our own happiness in the process. Then we spend a lifetime trying to find our way back to that happiness just as both Lee and Tony did. When Lee and Tony have a second chance, they struggle to figure out how to resolve the past and embrace a second chance. Seems Like Old Times had me in tears while I contemplated decisions from my own life yet it reminded me that love is never a mistake even when it hurts. Pence delivers complex characters who in many ways create their own problems just as we tend to do in real life. Throughout the pages of Seems Like Old Times, the question isn't just about second chances but about forgiveness, understanding, and acceptance of others but also of one's self. Be warned; reading Seems Like Old Times, may make you nostalgic for a lost love... Read at your own risk, but read. You won't regret it!

Bonus: Pence references a song called Seems Like Old Times in the book... In case you'd like to listen... Here's two versions... Pick the one you prefer or, heck, just give them both a try...

Vaughn Monroe version




Diane Keaton in Annie Hall




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