Homecoming by Belva Plain
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3.95  ·  Rating details ·  8,041 ratings  ·  98 reviews
With unerring insight and emotional power, Belva Plain, in her extraordinary novel, tells the story of a family divided and of the proud matriarch who takes a bold last stand to unite her warring children in what may be their last Homecoming.

It is a crisp December day when Annette Byrne walks to the end of her long, curving driveway and drops five sealed envelopes into the
Paperback, 249 pages
Published October 13th 1998 by Dell (first published October 6th 1997)
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Average rating 3.95  · 
Rating details
 ·  8,041 ratings  ·  98 reviews

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Rhonda Rae Baker
Sep 24, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Could not put this down...greatly moving and an important message about what's truly important in life. Never is it right to hold grudges and throw out accusations towards others, especially family!

This novel had me in tears. The message was so powerful for none of us know how long we have to live and no day should be ended with sadness. There is always something wonderful to be looked forward to with the hope of tomorrow. Sad to say, but sometimes it takes a tragedy for humans to realize the f
Carol B.
May 21, 2009 rated it really liked it
short and sweet and makes you think about what is important.
Oct 21, 2011 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Anyone who has family issues that need to be resolved.
I loved this book. It took me awhile to understand that the grandmother Annette was planning the Homecoming of her family to resolve their family problems. The beginning of the book lays out each family member and their issues with each other. It was interesting to get to know them and their characters. I don't know if it's because I am easily distracted, or preoccupied when I was reading this book, but I did have some trouble keeping all their names and various stories separate, yet connected t ...more
Jun 29, 2012 rated it it was ok
At first, I enjoyed this book. Towards the middle I was bored. As the ending came closer, I realized that I enjoyed the experience regardless of the boring bits. The ending came to an overly-sweet close considering the angst that the book started out with. Plain's style is...well...plain, and in this case it's perhaps too plain. She introduces a lot of characters with a lot of issues with each other, and the book itself is short. So you get a ton of characters with superficial problems that are ...more
Mar 28, 2016 rated it it was ok
I usually like this author but this one fell short. I did finish it and it wasn't bad I just thought it was boring . A few things happened and I kept up hope that it would improve but I could not connect with the characters at all. I could hardly remember who was who. I would pass this one up ...more
M.M. Strawberry Library & Reviews
You have to be kidding me.

Good premise, but oh my god. Especially with the guy who cheated on his wife. Grandma invites the man who cheated on her granddaughter to her house and he goes into her bedroom and refuses to leave until she forgives him (which she does) This is the asshole who cheated on her on a whim when they were out for dinner at the country club. Just like that. And then when he is trying to reconcile with her, he's like 'I would like to think that if the positions were resolved,
Carolyn F.
Jan 31, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: contemporary, drama
Talk about melodramatic! This book was all about privileged prideful people. I just didn't enjoy listening to the book much at all but it was only 4 cassettes unabridged, so I stuck with it.

The narrator is Lindsay Crouse, who I think is a good actress, but wasn't good as a narrator in this book. The upper class New York accents were irritating to me but that's because I don't like the way they sound at all. It would as if you hate hillbilly accents and you had a whole book full of them. Yuck! I
Mar 27, 2008 rated it really liked it
Estranged families need to read this book and see what they are missing from their life.
Annette Byrne was 85 years old. Her husband had been dead for 10 years and she didn't know how much time she had left. She decided that she had enough of her family's feuding and decided to invite them all to her house one weekend in December. They each received an invitation without knowing the other family members would be at her house.
Lewis Byrne was married to Daisy. They were parents to Cynthia. Lewis was still upset after 6 years over the loss of his family business. His family once ran an
Anne Marie
Jun 28, 2020 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Pamela Scott

This is my first time reading the author. I chose the book at random in a charity shop. The shop was selling 2 books for £1. I’d picked out the books I really wanted and chose this at random to make up the numbers. I wasn’t expecting much so this book lived up to my lack of expectations. The book is short and there are a lot of characters in it. Too much time is spent getting to know the characters and their various issues. When time is short we don’t need
Paula Boyce
May 10, 2021 rated it really liked it
This book was about families and how truly important it is to stay connected in spite of our everyday ups and downs. This story included a few tragedies, some humor, and lots of relatable incidents. I love stories of this nature--quick and easy to read, but deep in meaning and sentimentality. This is a trademark of Belva Plains books. She is a wonderful author that I can count on for this type of book.
Keniesha Bellmer
Jun 06, 2020 rated it did not like it
I'm sure this was a good book, and i read every word of it, but it was painfully boring to me. I didnt feel for any of the characters. The first couple chapters had my attention. They were fast paced and full of interesting events, but it quickly died and I lost the whole story. ...more
Denise Busiello
Jan 06, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The character said the smallest pleasures are the best comfort during our biggest griefs. This book was a great source of comfort for me as I read it after my mom passed. A beautiful and heart wrenching family story.
Pat Arnold
Jun 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a keeper. Although I have read other books with the same theme, I never tire of it.
Sally Brooks
Jun 16, 2017 rated it liked it
Very predictable but a fast read.
Jul 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Family at war, but grandma saves the day. I enjoyed it
Jan 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
I really liked this book. The only thing-at the end it was kind of difficult to keep the characters straight. But I think I have found a new author to enjoy!
Katie Mullen
Feb 24, 2019 rated it it was ok
Great book to read at night because it’s so boring it’ll put you right to sleep!!
Mar 20, 2019 rated it liked it
A grandmother sends out five letters which bring the family home. This is an interesting story. However, it was a slow start for me.
Jul 21, 2019 rated it it was ok
Story is good. But too obvious and the dialogues are so stilted and artificial.
Oct 02, 2019 rated it did not like it
All I can say is I'm glad this was not the first Belva Plain I've ever read, otherwise, it would have been the last. It was so boring that I had trouble continuing the read. ...more
Apr 11, 2020 rated it liked it
not bad, but pretty predicatable.
Lisa Lawrence
Apr 14, 2020 rated it really liked it
You hope it works out, but one can’t be sure. I enjoyed the characters and the action.
Feb 24, 2021 rated it it was ok
Short book. Old woman gathers feuding family to reconcile. Predictable, sappy, unrealistic.
Jul 16, 2021 rated it liked it
Reminds me of a Maeve Binchy book but not nearly as well written.
Catherinehaine Haines
A story about a family that have lost each other because of unfortunate events in their lives, and how the elder statesman of the family tries to heal the rift. A short read with an underlying lesson for families who have fallen out ,about life being too short.
Mar 16, 2021 rated it liked it
I always like reading Belva Plain, her characters are real and relatable. Just enough turns to keep it exciting, and things always end happily.
Apr 09, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, usa
Annette Byrne is the elderly matriarch of the family. She sends invitation letters to all the family members inviting them to come and spend the day with her. Only she carefully doesn't mention in each letter that it is a family gathering. Much of the family is estranged from one another and Annette knows full well that if the family members knew who else would be there, they wouldn't show. Her hope is that the day can be a time of reconciliation. But will her plan work?
It's been a number of y
I received this book as a gift and had never heard of the author. Had I known she boasts a long list of books with matching covers and one-word titles, I'd probably not have chosen it, but in my ignorance I found it a quite nice read. My enjoyment was probably due to the many characters- the extended family and their problems. Besides, I'm always more forgiving when it's a holiday book, consumed over the holidays, which is when I first read it. The climax is absurd but the ending is rather nice ...more
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Belva Plain was a best-selling American author of mainstream women's fiction. Her first novel, Evergreen (1978) topped the New York Times bestseller list for 41 weeks and was made into a TV miniseries. At her death, there were over 30 million copies of her twenty-plus novels in print in 22 languages.


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