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Publisher's Summary

In 2011, when she was in her late 50s, beloved author and journalist Joyce Maynard met the first true partner she had ever known. Jim wore a rakish hat over a good head of hair; he asked real questions and gave real answers; he loved to see Joyce shine, both in and out of the spotlight; and he didn't mind the mess she made in the kitchen. He was not the husband Joyce imagined, but he quickly became the partner she had always dreamed of.

Before they met, both had believed they were done with marriage, and even after they married, Joyce resolved that no one could alter her course of determined independence. Then, just after their one-year wedding anniversary, her new husband was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. During the 19 months that followed, as they battled his illness together, she discovered for the first time what it really meant to be a couple - to be a true partner and to have one.

This is their story. Charting the course through their whirlwind romance, a marriage cut short by tragedy, and Joyce's return to singleness on new terms, The Best of Us is a heart-wrenching, ultimately life-affirming reflection on coming to understand true love through the experience of great loss.

©2017 Joyce Maynard (P)2017 HighBridge, a Division of Recorded Books

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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A true life love story

This is a true love story. It's not a romance, although there certainly are many romantic moments, and it's not a tragedy, even though there is a great deal of sadness and loss. Anyone who has been in a committed, loving relationship will relate to this beautiful story of what it means to love another person without reservation. Beautifully read by the author, which makes the story even more powerful.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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A moving testament

A moving testament to the human struggle to find love, and make sense of what happens throughout life. This memoir is personal to the author, but also to anyone with a heart. Read it, learn from it, and grow . Moving and powerful, gentle and true, it's a book you will not forget.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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A touching love story with steep hills and valleys.

I love everything this author does. At times, this book could be horribly sad, but she writes with such honesty and integrity. The fact that she narrates this book, and at times it had to be hard, is nothing less then impressive.

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I love Joyce Maynard- I'm a longtime fan

I can't remember how I discovered this author but I'm so glad I did. She has a wonderful way of creating images in my mind.
This is a very sad book, obviously, but I love her writing so much and she didn't disappoint.
Actually she focused a lot more on life than death in this book.
She certainly made me cherish my husband in ways that I often forget in the every day business of living. I only wish she could have had more time with Jim.
I googled to see if I could find any of her wedding photos and I did. They looked radiant and so happy only to have a very abbreviated time together.
Still, she writes about it magnificently, as she always does, no matter what she's writing about.
I love her narration. I wouldn't want anyone else to express themselves the way she does.
I've missed very few of her books and will eventually get to all of them.
I love this lady.

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Heartbreaking story of a too short love affair.

I enjoyed this book. It brought tears to my eyes several times. You could feel the love the author had for her husband, and her tenacity to keep him alive.

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I wanted to love this story...

unfortunately I couldn't finish it. And it's hard for me to not finish a book. But this is not a story of "us" it's really all about Joyce. Maybe it's her tone reading it, maybe it's me because the reviews for this book are great. But I just found the story to be so one-sided and Joyce so self-absorbed that I couldn't get into it.

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A remarkable book

This is a must read for anyone with a life partner. Joyce's story teaches us all about cherishing the time we have with people we love.