Item description for After Hours at the Almost Home by Tara Yellen...
It's Super Bowl Sunday at the Almost Home Bar and Grill with the hometown Broncos playing for their second championship in a row, and the already-busy night is about to get busier. When the bartender walks off, she leaves the remaining staff to the chaos of the night-and with the real question. Not why did she leave but why do they stay? After closing time and on a school night, Collen's 14-year-old daughter is no stranger to the Almost Home. She'll do almost anything to leave, to move her life forward or somehow return to earlier, better times, anywhere but here. But it doesn't matter, there seems to be no way out. For one night, we follow all of them as they make their cash, close up, and then linger into the after hours, as they always do, their lives colliding, past and present, in the dark back corner at table 14-drinking, talking and now, in the wake of Marna's sbsence, facing questions: Where did she go? Will she return? Whe do we stay? How dangerous is restaurant love? Smart, provocative, and flawlessly on target, Tara Yellen's revealing debut offers keen insights on a group of people left to put the pieces of their own lives back together in the wake of a friend's disappearance. After Hours at the Almost Home will put you in an altered state-it's got kick and goes down like a shot. But its effects might be far more lasting.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.8" Width: 5.9" Height: 0.8" Weight: 0.8 lbs.
Release Date Apr 15, 2008
Publisher Unbridled Books
ISBN 1932961488 ISBN13 9781932961485
Reviews - What do customers think about After Hours at the Almost Home?
This book will be a movie one day Aug 5, 2008
After Hours at The Almost Home is a tremendous work for any reader who values rich character development, ingeniously clever writing, and deliberate but subtle plot development. This work is no sledge hammer. It challenges the reader to scan between the lines for hints of what is to come. It features disparate characters who will be familiar to most readers, regardless of how much time they spend at local neighborhood bars. The book reads like some of the finest modern independent films, and will doubtless eventually find its way to the big screen. A great read.
One night in screwed up lives Jul 24, 2008
If you wish to read a book detailing some truly screwed up lives, this is the book. Interesting read, but it is hard to imagine that everyone that works in a bar is this totally messed up! I am assuming the author took every psychologically damaged person she has met and put them all in one book. A fun read, but, seriously....would it have hurt to have someone normal in this story?
A Rising Star at the "Almost Home" Apr 27, 2008
Tara Yellen has a way with words that describes places, people and their lives in a way that compels you to keep turning the page. The setting is a bar in Denver on Super Bowl Sunday, not a locale that I know - or didn't - until I read Ms. Yellens first novel. She breathed life into her characters and made the Bronco's fans and the servers at the "Almost Home" into real people - strangely disjointed yet interconnected people. The "Almost Home" reminds you of a place you may have been to before and the characters' depth, relationships and backstories grab you and keep you on the edge. Ms Yellen is an author whose star will be rising. I can't wait to read her next book!
Great read Apr 21, 2008
As someone who used to work in restaurants, I found this book to be spot on. A friend recommended it and I didn't expect to have time to read it immediately, but once I picked it up, I couldn't put it down. It was easy to become engrossed in the book, even though the story line and characters had a lot of depth and complexity. I feel like I got to know the characters well, but they still managed to surprise me.
Multi-character study that's light on plot Apr 21, 2008
The prologue presents us with two of this story's elements, one being the Almost Home Bar and Grill, and the other being JJ, the new girl who is about to start her first shift. One would assume after receiving this introduction that one or both will be the primary characters for the whole story. We learn just enough to want to know more.
Tara Yellen's After Hours at the Almost Home begins on Super Bowl Sunday at the Almost Home. We meet the crew and a regular customer or two, stay after hours, and finish up before twenty-four hours have passed.
There's JJ, and no one seems to understand why anyone would start her on the day of the Super Bowl. She spends most of her time defending her maturity, insisting she's already graduated from school and pretending that getting high is old hat for her, despite the coughing of a newbie.
We meet Colleen, a widow, who thinks her fourteen-year-old daughter walks on water, when she has no idea what kind of trouble her little Lily desperately wants to get into. Then there's Keith, the bartender, who is counting the hours until he and Marna can run off together - and Lena who has a thing for Denny, and so on and so on.
One might wonder how Yellen can make one night take up a whole book. The answer is flashbacks, and lots of them. We get a lot of backstory as the day crawls into night and drags into the wee hours.
Some people might enjoy a multi-character study that is light on plot, but this reader kept waiting for something to happen. While the characters do not come across as rich or deeply drawn, Yellen does effectively get inside the heads of some of the characters, taking us through their thought process, which feel perfectly credible and, at times, engaging. A web of relationships and drama exist, but somehow we are led to expect more than that. There are hints of storylines here and there, but most are never fully realized, explored, built up, and resolved.
Only one out of a few storylines pays off for the reader, whereas the rest meander without going anywhere, resulting in an unsatisfying ending for most characters involved. I didn't sense an arc for most characters or their lives. This novel is more of a day in the life of a waitress. Maybe something happened the day after that.
Reviewed by Margaret Andrews for Curled Up With A Good Book