Evvie Drake Starts Over

A Novel
Narrated by: Julia Whelan, Linda Holmes
Length: 9 hrs and 6 mins
Categories: Fiction, Contemporary
4.5 out of 5 stars (3,785 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

New York Times best seller • #ReadWithJenna Book Club Pick as Featured on Today • "Everything a romantic comedy should be: witty, relatable, and a little complicated." (People)

A heartfelt debut about the unlikely relationship between a young woman who’s lost her husband and a major league pitcher who’s lost his game.

Named one of the Best Books of the Year by NPR

In a sleepy seaside town in Maine, recently widowed Eveleth "Evvie" Drake rarely leaves her large, painfully empty house nearly a year after her husband’s death in a car crash. Everyone in town, even her best friend, Andy, thinks grief keeps her locked inside, and Evvie doesn’t correct them.

Meanwhile, in New York City, Dean Tenney, former Major League pitcher and Andy’s childhood best friend, is wrestling with what miserable athletes living out their worst nightmares call the "yips": he can’t throw straight anymore, and, even worse, he can’t figure out why. As the media storm heats up, an invitation from Andy to stay in Maine seems like the perfect chance to hit the reset button on Dean’s future.

When he moves into an apartment at the back of Evvie’s house, the two make a deal: Dean won’t ask about Evvie’s late husband, and Evvie won’t ask about Dean’s baseball career. Rules, though, have a funny way of being broken - and what starts as an unexpected friendship soon turns into something more. To move forward, Evvie and Dean will have to reckon with their pasts - the friendships they’ve damaged, the secrets they’ve kept - but in life, as in baseball, there’s always a chance - up until the last out.

A joyful, hilarious, and hope-filled debut, Evvie Drake Starts Over will have you cheering for the two most unlikely comebacks of the year - and will leave you wanting more from Linda Holmes.

Praise for Evvie Drake Starts Over

"A quirky, sweet, and splendid story of a woman coming into her own." (Taylor Jenkins Reid, New York Times best-selling author of Daisy Jones & the Six)

"Effortlessly enjoyable...[a] pitch-perfect...adult love story that is as romantic as it is real." (USA Today)

"Charming, hopeful, and gently romantic...Evvie Drake is great company." (Rainbow Rowell, number one New York Times best-selling author of Eleanor & Park)

©2019 Linda Holmes (P)2019 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

"Holmes writes with an easy warmth about kind people who are trying their best but messing things up anyway.... A warm and lovely romance, perfect for readers of Rainbow Rowell and Louise Miller." (Kirkus Reviews starred review)

"Evvie Drake Starts Over is a heartwarming rom-com about loss, grief and second chances…. Despite the kernel of sadness rooted at the novel’s core, Evvie Drake Starts Over is a feel-good read that radiates warmth. Holmes nails the balance between romance and humor, with Evvie and Dean’s effortless and truly funny dialogue being a particular strength.... Uplifting and life-affirming, Evvie Drake Starts Over is a perfect choice for fans of Rainbow Rowell and Marian Keyes." (BookPage starred review)

"The charm of Holmes’ novel comes not only from a genuine friendship between Evvie and Dean that develops into a sweet romance but also from watching amiable Evvie stumble through the process of finding herself in a realistic way. A warm and funny book that will utterly captivate fans of Abbi Waxman and Taylor Jenkins Reid." (Booklist starred review)

Featured Article: 20 Best Romance Audiobooks to Lose Yourself In


There’s hardly a genre better suited for audio than romance. Whether it’s an innocent story of first love, a wonderfully torturous slow burn, or a whirlwind, passionate affair, listening to narrators at the top of their game carefully unspool the threads of a love story is our favorite way to consume these enchanting stories. In this list, you’ll find tropes of every kind, diverse and distinct characters, and remarkable, innovation audio recording and performances. Here are the 20 best romance audiobooks in our catalog.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
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    5 out of 5 stars

Loveliest!

I have been a giant fan of Linda's writing on NPR and was thrilled to check out her debut novel! The characters are very fleshed out and the story is rings true. Perfect summer read!

26 people found this helpful

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A book I never wanted to end!

Evvie Drake Starts Over is a novel that made me laugh, swoon, cry, and smile. Such a beautifully written book that displayed the imperfect reality of so many people’s lives. I found myself limiting how much I listened at a time because I never wanted it to end.

PS
Linda, please write a sequel!

14 people found this helpful

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Something made me keep listening....

I wouldn't have bought this audiobook if I'd known it was going to have such a sappy, simplistic and predictable plot. The reviews were quite positive, and I wasn't aware it was going to be a chick-lit kind of thing. However, something kept me listening. First, the narration was flawless. I found the characters likable and believable. Finally, there was a good deal of witty banter that offered frequent chuckles. Overall, there was nothing distasteful about the book, but it's not compelling enough to earn more than 3 stars.

6 people found this helpful

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Home Run

I had high expectations based on Linda Holmes' excellent work on NPR. The book even exceeded those expectations.
Excellent reader. Loved the easy banter and the naturalness of dialogue. As a romance it got where it had to go - and in an interesting way.

26 people found this helpful

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Boring!!!!

Overly descriptive in many instances as if the author was trying to see how much detail could be packed into a single event....such as a jar of rice falling and spilling across the kitchen floor. That event alone seemed to take 15 minutes to relate. The narrator’s attempt to speak in a man’s voice was irritating as was the constant sighing of the main female character.

4 people found this helpful

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Finished in one day

I saw this book on a morning tv show for summer read recommendations. I put it in my wish list and I’m so glad I did. I really enjoyed the characters, the storyline and the narrator. It was a nice light read that I really enjoyed listening to a lazy Sunday.

14 people found this helpful

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Great story that feels real

This story resonated with me, someone who has been soaking up HEA novels a lot recently. This is NOT a 'everything gets resolved quick' story. There are a lot of real human emotions and realistic situations. But the voices of the main characters don't come of whiny. I felt connected to them. I wanted things to work out because I cared.
I did have tears at one point. I enjoyed the narrator and there were plenty of smiles. I got pretty invested and listened for many hours - a good/bad thing since I was organizing a storage area, but I didn't give in to sleep until after 1 a.m.

11 people found this helpful

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This book was just ok

This was not one of the best books that I've listened to, but it was not terrible either. I mostly stayed interested in what was going on with the characters. The ending was pretty predictable though, and the story did not seem totally realistic..

6 people found this helpful

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Very Enjoyable

Finally a fun book. I was sorry to hear it end. I thought the narration for this one was particularly good.

9 people found this helpful

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I loved this book!

The characters and the story are so identifiable and engaging. I expect to read it again. Thank you!

12 people found this helpful