Lucy by the Sea (Amgash #4) by Elizabeth Strout

EXCERPT: I am a novelist and I had a book coming out that fall, and so after our trip to Grand Cayman I had a great deal of travelling to do around the country and I did it; this was in late October. I was also scheduled to go to Italy and Germany in the beginning of March, but in early December – it was kind of odd – I just decided I was not going to go to those places. I never cancel book tours and the publishers were not happy, but I was not going to go. As March approached someone said, ‘Good thing you didn’t go to Italy, they’re having that virus.’ And that’s when I noticed it. I think that was the first time. I did not really think about it ever coming to New York.

But William did.

ABOUT ‘LUCY BY THE SEA’: Lucy is uprooted from her life in New York City and reluctantly goes into lockdown with her ex-husband William in a house on the coast of Maine.

MY THOUGHTS: Not everyone is going to want to read about living through the first wave of the pandemic and the lockdown. I’m not going to say that this is Elizabeth Strout’s best book, because I don’t believe it is, but it certainly has merit. There are lots of things written within that gave me pause for thought.

Lucy by the Sea made me realise that we all coped with the isolation of the pandemic in our own ways. My experience was vastly different to Lucy’s.

While I wouldn’t describe reading Lucy By the Sea as an uplifting experience, there were a few moments of pure, unadulterated joy such as when Lucy sees the first dandelion flowering after winter. Who would have thought that the humble dandelion would bring such pleasure?

As always, Elizabeth Strout made me think, and remember.


#LucybytheSea #NetGalley

I: #elizabethstrout @penguinukbooks

T: @LizStrout @PenguinUKBooks

#contemporaryfiction #familydrama #sliceoflife

THE AUTHOR: Elizabeth Strout is the author of several novels, including: Abide with Me, a national bestseller and BookSense pick, and Amy and Isabelle, which won the Los Angeles Times Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction and the Chicago Tribune Heartland Prize, and was a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award and the Orange Prize in England. In 2009 she was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for her book Olive Kitteridge. Her short stories have been published in a number of magazines, including The New Yorker. She teaches at the Master of Fine Arts program at Queens University of Charlotte.

DISCLOSURE: Thank you to Waitomo District Library for the loan of Lucy By the Sea by Elizabeth Strout for review. All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own personal opinions.

For an explanation of my rating system please refer to my profile page or the about page on

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Author: sandysbookaday

I love good quality chocolate. I love the ocean and love to be in, on or beside it. I read any and every where. I am a proud mum and Nana. I like wine, gin, Southern Comfort, a cold Heineken on a hot day. I am very versatile like that. I cross stitch, do jigsaws, garden, and work on a farm. I am an occasional scribbler. I have far too many books I want to read to ever find the time to die. I am an active member of Goodreads as Sandy *the world could end while I was reading and I would never notice* and review on Amazon under the name Sandyj21. My Goodreads reviews are automatically linked to my Facebook page. Groups I belong to and participate in on Goodreads include: The Mystery, Crime and Thriller Group; Mysteries and Crime Thrillers; Psychological Thrillers; Reading for Pleasure; Crime Detective Mystery Thrillers; English Mysteries; Dead Good Crime; Kindle English Mystery, All About Books and NZ Readers. April 2016 I made the Top 1% of Goodreads reviewers (As follows) Hello Sandy *The world could end while I was reading and I would never notice*, In our community of readers, you stand out in a notable way: You're one of the top 1% of reviewers on Goodreads! With every rave and every pan, with every excited GIF and every critical assessment, you've helped the Goodreads community get closer to a very important milestone – the 50 Million Reviews mark!

10 thoughts on “Lucy by the Sea (Amgash #4) by Elizabeth Strout”

  1. So true Sandy, each of us experienced it very differently. In my part of the world, or at least for me, the first lockdown doesn’t seem as bad in retrospect as when we had the ‘second wave’ with many many casualties including people we knew. One got frightened even of answering the phone.
    Glad the book was good, and I can relate to the joy of seeing the first dandelion. If it did teach us to continue to appreciate these little joys or relearn to, that’s something positive to be taken away from it I guess.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I loved the first lockdown, Mallika. I was stressed from work and being short staffed and I made the most of that break. The following lockdowns, and we had several, were a bit more stressful as both my husband and son were working in expanded essential services occupations. I was worrying about them and looking after my 3 then 4 year old grandson several days a week. The only bonus was travelling – there was virtually no one on the roads.
      To be honest, I’d never thought about appreciating dandelions before, but I saw a big clump of them the other day and they brought a big smile to my face. πŸ˜Šβ€πŸ“š

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m sure your library will have a copy of My Name is Lucy Barton, Kathryn. It took me a bit to get into as Elizabeth Strout has a unique writing style, but then I was hooked and remain so. Good luck finding a copy. β€πŸ“š

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Nice review, Sandy. I agree, it was a huge part of our lives and we all dealt with it in different ways. I’m sure it will crop up in more and more books. I haven’t read an Elizabeth Strout book yet, but someday….. πŸ“šπŸ˜ƒ

    Liked by 1 person

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