The Last Letter from Your Lover (2024)

Summer

60 reviews28 followers

October 3, 2011

I won The Last Letter From Your Lover in a GoodReads First Reads giveaway.

This novel depicts a young woman's struggle with her marriage during the 1960s when divorce was taboo and society rules dictated that women be seen and not heard. This novel also depicts a young woman in the present day who struggles with her relationship with a married man and her job at a newspaper, which she is at risk of losing.

I got a little lost in this novel, not because it was confusing, but because the voice changed throughout. I really enjoyed the story of Jennifer Stirling, and I think that particular storyline could have been a good book all on its own. But the author threw in Ellie's story along with it, which was not quite as strong. The story was a little flimsy and we spent less time with the character development in Ellie's portion of the book, so it was much harder for me to empathize with her. The voice of the book changed dramatically when we got to Ellie's story. It felt like two different writers wrote the stories and tried to find a way to tie them together.

I would have done something a little different with this novel if I were editing it. The storyline of Ellie is brought in much too late in the story. Once I finished reading the first couple sections about Jennifer Stirling, I was so engaged in her story that it was jarring to launch me into a completely different and NEW story. The writer could have done one of two things here: Either forget about Ellie and just tell the story of Jennifer Stirling, OR begin the book with Ellie and pepper the flashbacks to the 1960s throughout so that the reader and Ellie discover Jennifer's story together. This would make the stories much more integrated.

I think there's a lot of good stuff here, but the book needs some work to achieve its full potential.

The Last Letter from Your Lover

    2011 giveaways-arcs

William

1,131 reviews5 followers

August 24, 2013

I'm expecting that I am one of very few readers who did not absolutely love this book. As far as I can tell, I am the only male who has read it, which may explain my minority view. For the first half, I kept fighting not to abandon it entirely. But as it turns out, this is really two novels: a fairly pedestrian one about a love affair in 1960 and a more engaging sequel forty years later. I wonder if the 400-page book could have simply started in the middle and been a lot better.

Why did the first half put me off? The characters struck me as fairly cliche and flat, and I could not figure out why either of the lovers engendered passion in the other. The romantic attachment simply never struck me as credible. On the one hand you have Jennifer, a privileged, stunning, and utterly self-possessed young woman. (I kept envisioning her as Grace Kelly or the character January Jones portrayed in "Mad Men.") On the other, you have Anthony, a passionate, adventure-seeking international journalist. She never even reads a newspaper, and he has a total lack of familiarity with the upper reaches of society which Jennifer inhabits. I just don't get it.

The characters do not improve that much in the second half, though Jennifer seems to have acquired some wisdom and an internal dignity rather than just elegantly refined social graces. But the story, which had for me limped painfully through the two hundred pages, begins to zip along. The plot becomes inventive, has believable surprises, and actually finally includes some moments which moved me.

I'm still not convinced that the time it takes to read this book is well-spent, but at least there is some fulfillment for the reader if you stick to it through the end.

    fiction

Sharon Orlopp

Author1 book907 followers

July 20, 2023

Jojo Moyes is a masterful storyteller and I thoroughly enjoyed The Last Letter from Your Lover. I highly recommend it!

There are two timelines in the story: 1960 and 2003. Moyes weaves the storylines together seamlessly. The book focuses on relationship choices, marriages, affairs, and the consequences of decisions. It is a tale about chances missed and a life wasted.

Some of the most poignant passages include:

* I'm afraid no one will ever love me like that.

* To have someone out there who understands you, desires you, who sees you as a better version of yourself, is the most astonishing gift.

* Rewrite the page (the story of your life)

* "If only" is a very dangerous game.

* It was the hope that would kill you.

Highly recommend!

    fiction

M

837 reviews165 followers

May 27, 2013

Must remember to not go by goodreads ratings alone. This staggeringly high rating average indicates that the people who picked this up realized it was a sappy romance novel and were actually pleased by that idea. My one star indicates that I am not the intended audience, and I do not appreciate the pretty, trapped wife for whom infidelity is actually a noble act, nor the conveniently awful husband whom she would be right to cheat, or that rich people are predictably the boring and evil people and that the poor guy is OBVIOUSLY the better bet and that beauty is as strong an indicator of heroism as, say, actions (actually it is a better one), and that lust is the same as love if not more powerful and timeless.
Yeah.

Karen J

330 reviews231 followers

September 6, 2021

“The Last Letter From Your Lover” by Jojo Moyes
🌟🌟🌟🌟

I am not a big fan of Jojo Moyes but thought I would give this one a read. So glad I did read it because I thoroughly enjoyed “The Last Letter From Your Lover”. The love that is shared through a couples love letters are very heartwarming and also at times extremely frustrating. I had no idea how the story was going to end…wonderful surprise?

Jeanne

306 reviews

January 21, 2015

4.5 stars

The Last Letter from Your Lover (6)

Jojo Moyes knows how to tell a compelling story! This was a very romantic double love story that centered around secret hand written love letters. The first two-thirds of the book was Jennifer Stirling's story taking place in the early 1960's. I'm not sure why I always think I'm not going to like a historical romance, because so far I have loved the ones I've read. This was my favorite part of the book. I felt that Ms. Moyes did a beautiful job of painting a picture of this period of time, it was like watching an old movie. There were several plot twists I didn't see coming, so it definitely kept me turning the pages.

The last third of the book moves forward in time to 2003, where Ellie Haworth finds some of these love letters, and they inspire her to make decisions about her own story. I ended up liking the format of the book when I reached the end, if anyone is going to be a sucker for an epic love story it'll be me. When I was reading though, it was a little frustrating to have the time jump. It was kind of like having a cliffhanger within a book. I was very engaged with Jennifer's story, desperate to know what happened with her, so the time jump tested my patience. It's funny though, out of the three books I've read by this amazing author, this book had my favorite ending.

My favorite book by Jojo Moyes is , closely followed by . Her books for me always make an impression and become those rare books that stay with you, I can't recommend them highly enough.

February 24, 2017

Una historia sin duda cautivadora!!! Es lo primero que leo de esta escritora y me ha conquistado en mayúsculas. Un relato exquisito. Una pluma suave y delicada. Y dos historias de amor a cuál más dura y tierna a la vez. Sin embargo, no he podido darle las cinco estrellas, porque en cada capítulo me perdía y no sabía si estaba en el antes o en el antes del accidente. Pero sí quiero remarcar que las cartas de amor son... y más después de haber leído el final de la novela: cuando sabes que realmente alguien escribió esas cartas.

Mil gracias Lidia por recomendarme este libro!!!

    jojo-moyes

Jennifer Masterson

200 reviews1,321 followers

April 29, 2014

What a disappointment. This book was boring and filled with one-dimensional characters. I'm shocked that this is by the same author who wrote "Me Before You" which is one of my favorite books of all time.

PDXReader

262 reviews76 followers

July 1, 2011

I cannot believe how much I disliked this book. I tried to like it -- I really tried -- but honestly, it's got to be the least satisfying book I've read this year.

The first section occurs in 1960, and it's dreadful. The plot is thin and predictable, the characters melodramatic, one-dimensional and stereotypical. The writing is terrible; not only is it over-the-top, but several times I had to re-read sentences to try to figure out what the author was trying to say (never a good sign). Even the sex scenes are dull!

The latter part takes place in 2003 and it's somewhat better. The writing is less stilted and the characters better fleshed out. The plot is still predictable, though, and it simply isn't good enough to redeem the flaws of the first section.

Yes, it's romantic, in an old-fashioned, black-and-white-B-movie kind of way, where overly sentimental dialogue was the norm and silly young women wept copious tears at the plight of star-crossed lovers. I think, though, that there are much better romances out there that cover the same territory.

Ivana - Diary of Difference

583 reviews920 followers

February 21, 2022

One of the few books that made me cry like a little girl and made me wonder about whether I've made the right choices in life...

    format-print read-in-2017

[~Ami~]♥Sexy Dexy♥

501 reviews470 followers

October 11, 2014

3 stars

The Last Letter from Your Lover (14)

I had a really hard time getting into this. The multiple povs, the story was all over the place in part 1 and was too confusing for me. Also I didnt like present day heroine, Ellie and felt like the author could have left her story out.

It was a forbidden romance with a lot of missed opportunities and I started to get into the story more by part 2 but by part 3 I felt exhausted. There was some good plot twist but by the end it didnt leave me satisfied. Im glad I picked it up though as I adore this author.

Paula Margulies

Author4 books630 followers

August 27, 2012

This book deserves a better title. Wonderful writing and an intriguing storyline (with a kick-ass twist at the end!).

Tina

632 reviews1,403 followers

April 25, 2022

A 3 1/2 star read for me. I wasn't sure that I really liked the couple in the beginning or their romance. This book grew on me though. Part of the book tells the lovers story in the 1960's and the other part is modern day that intertwines with another present-day love affair. It all comes together really well and I couldn't wait to find out what happened to the long ago lovers. I think this book would work well as a movie, I could so see it.

    historical-fiction

Connie Cox

286 reviews193 followers

January 7, 2015

I first thought, what a great love story Moyes has written, just beautifully done. So a 3 star from me...good story, well developed characters, kept my interest. Meaning and depth? Maybe not. But the more I thought about this the higher the rating went.

I was so used to her taking on a timely topic....assisted suicide in "Me Before You:, the theft of art etc by the Nazi's in "The Girl You Left Behind" and I thought, eh, just a light love story. But the more I thought of this book the more I realized she was making a statement....how sad it is that we communicate so much in the "social/techno field"?Do we even talk or communicate our true thoughts and feelings any more? When did you last receive a letter in the mail....one that had meaning? Was it perhaps when you were younger? Was it maybe the "last letter from your lover?" What are we missing today?

I thought she captured the 50's and 60's wonderfully, women had their place, and she switched to the present just as well....the age of a dashed off email, quick text.....what does it mean? what are they saying? Given the choice I would rather curl up in a chair and savor the handwritten letter, reading it again and again. What do we really communicate in todays day and age?

Moyes creates some similarities between Jennifer and Ellie, both loving men that are forbidden...and that bond makes the transition between both stories, past and present work. I have to say, I did not much care for Ellie as I wanted to slap her and tell her to open her eyes! And even though Jennifer was traveling outside the acceptable for her time, I likedher< I was rooting for her and hoping she would get all the happiness she deserved.

For the fact that this "love" story left me thinking about so much more, I move the rating to 4 stars.

    2014 book-club-reads

Carol

847 reviews546 followers

October 12, 2014

Add me to the legions of fans of JoJo Moyes. I’m not exactly certain how to classify her books but women’s contemporary fiction suits as well as anything. The two I’ve read were love stories at their core. Some would call them romance, not me. Romantic perhaps.

It is 1960. Jennifer Stirling is hospitalized, suffering from memory loss due to a severe car accident. This alone caught my attention as what the brain will forget when stressed interests me. When released she goes home to her husband and we can feel her confusion and awkwardness as she tries to regain consciousness of who she is or was for that matter. Something seems off. Then she finds a letter with an impassioned plea for her to chuck her life and meet said composer at the train station. It is signed B. Who is this man and why would Jennifer consider giving up her privileged life to follow him? The reader will find out all in a story told in dual time frames over a span of 40+ years.

Essentially a thriller reader in need of a feelgood story now and then I am often left cold by forced sentimentality or down right sappiness.

The Last Letter From Your Lover evoked feelings of sadness, both hopefulness and hopelessness, nostalgia and a yearning hunger for a love letter of my own. Aptly titled, I loved it.

Annalynn

366 reviews14 followers

June 11, 2012

This was one of those books that sounds like an incredible story, but the execution of that story is lacking. Spoilers follow, since there is no way to discuss it otherwise. It was a confusing story that could have been great, but, alas, it was presented poorly. The first half of the book is set in either 1960 or 1964. It alternates back and forth between the two time frames. Adding to the confusion is that every time it would switch between the years, the chapter would often start out featuring a different character you hadn't met before (like the secretary, or the lover the first time, or the lover's boss). I was constantly having to go back and forth in the pages to figure out what was happening, which is not so easy to do on the kindle as it is in a hard copy. As if this wasn't confusing enough, the second half of the book is told in 2003, featuring another person we hadn't met before.

I actually like the idea of someone finding 40 year old love letters and trying to solve the mystery of who they were to/from, and what happened to them. But I really, REALLY wish the author would have opened the book with this mystery, and just simply flashed back to the 60s from there. Frankly, too much time of the book is spent on the 60s couple, and not enough on our modern story. Instead, we have a mystery within a mystery, as our heroine has amnesia for every other story for the first half of the book, and then the modern-day heroine trying to solve a second mystery 40 years later involving our first mystery lead characters. And yes, reading the book was just as confusing as it sounds in my review. Good luck if you try and read this.

Helene Jeppesen

691 reviews3,610 followers

January 11, 2015

When I started reading this book, I immediately got mildly irritated with all the chick-lit clichés that the first chapter had, and I thought to myself that this was going to be another one of those chick-lit books that are very relaxing to read, but that I've slowly gotten tired of over the years.
Then I turned the page, the second chapter started and I was immediately grabbed by the turn in both the story and its vibe. This was a completely different story, and as I kept on reading, I got more and more emotionally captivated and had a hard time putting down the book.
And that's how this reading experience continued for me. Especially the last 100 pages were amazing, and they made me laugh, smile and tear up a little bit all at the same time. I still can't believe how much this book surprised me and how much I was fooled by the beginning.
This is nothing similar to your typical chick-lit novel. This is a heartwrenching story, and I imply you to read on if you've already started the book but aren't sure about its content, because this story comes with beautiful and breathtaking emotions as well as stunning surprises!

Lindsey Rey

286 reviews3,065 followers

May 3, 2016

[2.5 Stars]

    2016 historical-fiction romance

Nazanin

1,166 reviews769 followers

October 10, 2020

هر رفتاری نتایج خاص خودش رو داره. به نظر من دنیا از دو دسته آدم تشکیل شده. کسانی که می بینن و بر طبق اون تصمیم می گیرن و آدم هایی که فقط به خاطر حس خوبی که دارن جلو می رن.

    translated-or-farsi

3,168 reviews754 followers

November 21, 2013

4.5 stars

Brilliant, evocative, and tragic (but not without redemption), The Last Letter from Your Lover is as good as Moyes' Me Before You. I started sobbing 90 percent in and haven't yet stopped. I'm a bloody mess; rarely does a book offer such catharsis.

The book begins in 1960s London. Two people meet: The aloof, beautiful, polished Jennifer is married to Laurence, a successful, detached, casually cruel businessman who manages various mines in Africa. Anthony is a journalist, divorced, a heavy drinker, a mournful, impetuous man. He's not Jenny's type, much too volatile, not settled or grounded, and certainly without riches and social status. But Jennifer and Anthony feel a connection nonetheless, even though theirs is a love not meant to be...not then, not without missed opportunities and the drudgery of pain and loss.

Fast-forward 40-some years to London, 2003. Thirty-two-year-old Ellie is forging a love affair of her own. Her lover, John, is married with two young children and in no hurry to leave his wife. But Ellie has hope. Wrapped up in John, forgetting her own life, including her career as a journalist, Ellie doesn't see what's right in front of her, until she stumbles on a letter, the letter of the title: a handwritten love letter spanning decades. Obsessed with what she reads and what it means, Ellie seeks to find out more about a story that's perversely right in front of her.

Is there a happy ending here? That depends. Happiness isn't always what we imagine it to be. Sometimes it's about ourselves, our own convictions, doing what's right by our child, finding our own path, writing our own story, righting wrongs we had no way of preventing. Sometimes it's about a lonely man in a library, a guy who takes you ice-skating and makes you laugh, a post office box...open for 40 years. Sometimes it's about saying sorry, and words in a letter, gathering dust.

☾ Xènia

152 reviews

November 3, 2019

Increíble. Precioso. Fantástico.

Karen

2,048 reviews557 followers

July 29, 2023

The author actually wrote this before her bestselling ‘Me Before You’ and the movie of the same name.

Now that this book is a Netflix movie, I recommend you consider reading the book, as well…

This is a romance complicated by family obligations and missed opportunities.

The setting for this story overlaps from the 1960's to 2003. Forty years, shifting back and forth between the past and present.

Will you love the premise – understand the characters? Root for them? Care about the outcomes? Hope for them? Cry about the missed opportunities? Will the book be better than the movie or the other way around? 3.5 stars.

    been-here-before creates-questions easy-to-read

Michelle

1,445 reviews168 followers

September 20, 2021

I got so sucked into this book, very emotional. JoJo Moyes does know how to pull your heart strings which is should have been more prepared before after reading Me before You.

Ok, now to watch the Netflix adaptation and hope it lives somewhere near to the expectation.

exploraDora

593 reviews297 followers

August 22, 2021

***4,5 stars***

Such a beautifully written story, filled with romance, sadness, heartbreak but ultimately hope. I was hooked the whole time.

    adult audiobook historical-fiction

B the BookAddict

300 reviews756 followers

July 22, 2015


The title of this book would normally render it one that I would not read. It was a freebie and I picked it up because my library book had not become available yet. And surprisingly, I'm glad I did. The theme caught my attention because it is similar to that in The Things We Never Said by Susan Elliot Wright. Both have two stories based forty years apart whose connection is revealed only in the very last pages of the novel.

1964 and Jennifer Stirling wakes in a hospital after a shocking car accident. She can't remember the accident, details of her life, her name or her husband Larry, a business magnate; rich, successful but, she discovers, emotionally cold. As she searches for evidence about herself, she stumbles upon a letter; a fervent letter from an unknown 'B'. Although she can't recall the relationship, it was obviously passionate, intense and something for which she would jeopardise her life as she knew it. Jennifer is what we would now call probably a trophy wife. She's young, she's beautiful and she's accomplished only, it seems, at the social lifestyle of the extremely rich.

Anthony is a world wearied British journalist. He's been to all the political hot spots and just returned from the uprising in the Congo, he is burned out. His personal life bears scars from his perilous work; he has put his health at risk, is divorced and his contact with his only child is obstructed by his ex-wife.

In 2003 we meet Ellie Haworth; such a modern woman, she's single, in a job she loves and having an affair with a married man. And having just had a landmark birthday, she's decided she's fed up with being a mistress. A features writer with a prominent British newspaper, Ellie's career is flailing as she spends most of her time preoccupied with her lover and their relationship. She is commissioned by her eagle eyed boss Melissa, who seems to have Ellie in her guns, to write a feature based partly in the 1960s. In the newspaper's library archives, she stumbles across a letter in a file, seemingly unconnected to her task at hand. The letter is impassioned, intense and signed only 'B'. Ellie embarks on a quest for this mysterious 'B' and the unknown recipient of the letter. As small clues become evident, the quest becomes an obsession. Who was 'B' and who was the letter for? What happened to them? The fate of lovers of forty years ago speak across the decades in Ellie's mind and run a parallel to her own esoteric relationship.

    lite-reading

Suz

1,319 reviews705 followers

December 8, 2023

The last book I read by this author was a letdown, but this one pulled me right back up to the regard in which I feel this author to be. I loved the characters, the dual timeline (which is unusual for me), the amnesia and the crawling back to life after, and the dogged determination one woman carried through to help another of a different generation.

This author writes so well, of those in love, those who lost it and those who try to reclaim it years and years after. The twist at the end suited the narrative like nothing else. It was a captivating story of a true love affair, destined to last a lifetime. The author knows how to draw her audience quickly in and keep them there for the long haul.

Present day we witness a beautiful young journalist working without conviction or heart while in the throes of an affair with a married man, for her to hold onto a fresh new story which gives her something to live for. Underestimating herself for myriad of reasons.

I particularly loved the characters Anthony and Rory, the strong men whose morals tied in beautifully with the women their paths had crossed. I loved Anthony’s commitment to changing his way of being, and Rory’s quiet way of being.

A love story which interweaves two women in opposing stages of life, who end up learning a great deal from each other. The epistolary theme was a clever way of pulling out the heart of the narrative, with the keeper of the letters and the ending just perfect.

    audio-overdrive gave-away library-can-ban

Aimy Bes

59 reviews15 followers

September 29, 2019

3,5 stars

Personaje favorito: Anthony

Empecé a leer el libro sin saber muy bien que era lo que me iba a encontrar, pero para mi Jojo Moyes, es una buena garantía.

La historia me ha parecido preciosa, he empatizado con los personajes, aunque algunos me han gustado mucho más que otros. La trama que narra en la década de los 60 me ha encantado. Han habido momentos de sorpresa que no esperaba y eso siempre hace que valore una novela. También han habido momentos de impotencia y de incredulidad de cómo han sucedido los hechos, sobretodo incomprensibles para mí, cuando ocurren en la actualidad.

No puedo darle más puntuación porque aunque me ha gustado mucho la historia y cómo escribe Moyes, a ratos me ha dado la sensación que sobraban páginas y han habido tramas que se me han hecho muy lentas.

    romántica-clasica

Beenish

361 reviews446 followers

May 6, 2021

My favourite book finally has an official trailer and I've been dying for an adaptation! Can't wait to watch it! ❤️

°°°°°°°°°°
This is an old review from when I used to not notice or criticize things much.

This is the first novel of Jojo Moyes that I've read and I must say, once i started reading, there was no going back. It held me captive. Like it's heartbreakingly hopeless and hopeful at the same time, with mysterious connections and unpredictably amazing twists.
.
It starts with a woman who is in hospital after a car accident and her memory is lost, she does not know who she is, where she lives, nothing! But she keeps it to herself and when she spends sometime home, she understands through her husband's behaviour that things are not quite right between them. Then she finds letters written to her from some person called "b" and she understands that she loves another person which might be the reason of her husband's behaviour with her. And when she is so close to finding the person she thinks might be out there waiting for her, her husband tells her he's dead.
Aftet four years, she sees him! And then comes a separation of forty years!
.
In the last part of the novel, there is a journalist girl who has to come up with a story of about 40 to 50 years ago, and when she goes through the archives of the library of the newspaper company she works for, she finds the same letters and while doing her job, she tries to bring these separated people together
. ''Age is no protection against the hazards of love.''| Jojo Moyes.
.
Im so excited for this one to come up as a movie.

    jojomoyes

Marisa Sauco

303 reviews299 followers

May 10, 2017

Lloro de emoción...
M A R A V I L L O S A. ❤

¡Qué placer leer a Jojo Moyes!

Laura

245 reviews

August 19, 2012

Oh my goodness! Big sigh! A delicious read!
Started this book yesterday & couldn't put it down until I finished today.
Tragic & so sad, and yet hopeful...

One of my favourite parts was in a letter where Anthony writes, "...to have someone out there who understands you, who desires you, who sees you as a better version of yourself, is the most astonishing gift. Even if we are not together, to know that, for you, I am that man is a source of sustenance for me. I'm not sure how I earned the right. I don't feel entirely confident of it even now. But even the chance to think upon your beautiful face, your smile, and know that some part of it might belong to me is probably the single greatest thing that has happened in my life."

Or another great part of a letter, "...know this at least: that somewhere in this world is a man who loves you, who understands how precious and kind and clever you are. A man who has always loved you and, suspects he always will."

Isn't that what we're all looking for, to be loved fully, unconditionally, & passionately?

The Last Letter from Your Lover (2024)
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