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  • Willa’s Grove

  • By: Laura Munson
  • Narrated by: Xe Sands
  • Length: 11 hrs
  • 3.7 out of 5 stars (3 ratings)

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Willa’s Grove

By: Laura Munson
Narrated by: Xe Sands
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Summary

You are invited to the rest of your life.

Three women, from coast to coast and in between, open their mailboxes to the same intriguing invitation. Although leading entirely different lives, each has found herself at a similar, jarring crossroads. Right when these women thought they’d be comfortably settling into middle age, their carefully curated futures have turned out to be dead ends. 

The sender of the invitation is Willa Silvester, who is reeling from the untimely death of her beloved husband and the reality that she must say goodbye to the small mountain town they founded together. Yet as Willa mourns her losses, an impossible question keeps staring her in the face: So now what? 

Struggling to find the answer alone, fiercely independent Willa eventually calls a childhood friend who happens to be in her own world of hurt - and that’s where the idea sparks. They decide to host a weeklong interlude from life, and invite two other friends facing their own quandaries. Soon the four women converge at Willa’s Montana homestead, a place where they can learn from nature and one another as they contemplate their second acts together in the rugged wilderness of big sky country.

©2020 Laura Munson (P)2020 Blackstone Publishing

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Rather drawn out

I thought I would enjoy this more, but I became rather bored halfway through and skipped to almost the end. I loved the idea but it was rather drawn out.

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Profile Image for cls1789
  • cls1789
  • 02-06-20

What a fabulous book

I adored this book. It was an excellent exploration of the question of “what next” for each of the characters who were all at a midlife crossroads but who truly faced different futures from their last and from each other. Her writing was captivating and gripping, and I was swept up in the emotional journey. It was both cathartic and healing. I highly recommend it, and the narrator was outstanding.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Dharma
  • 30-03-20

Curl up and shelter in place in Montana

This beautifully written book will have you considering your own “So now what?” at this unprecedented moment in time. Our current pandemic affects the entire planet. And when it lifts, survivors will emerge from sheltering in place to a world disrupted. Substitute pandemic with more personal major life events and see how Laura Munson illustrates these women, raw and yearning having survived their own disrupted lives. Absent spouses from death, divorce, or divergent interests, an upended career, these women transform from anguish to acceptance, from utter despair to hope. They come to trust their hearts as they begin to know, love, and accept themselves with the same honesty they afford each other. Through a shared lens, options and opportunities surface with tentative optimism nurtured by each woman wanting the best for each other.

At a time when we are removed from our communities and yearn for connection, Willa’s Grove demonstrates the need for real friends, supportive friends who speak their truths and create space to hold each heart and soul. You’ll find yourself welcomed into Willa’s farmhouse to enjoy the sustenance of tea or homebrew as you observe bonds being formed—starting with one friend who brings another friend and that one brings another, comprising the diverse foursome of Jane, Bliss, Willa, and Harriet.

It all starts with an invitation — to the rest of your life. The timing is perfect to join this foursome and then create your own.

3 people found this helpful

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  • yoga mom
  • 23-02-22

Oh, So Good!

For me, when I see XE Sands is narrating a book, I am almost always ensured the story is rich. ‘Willa’s Grove’ is no exception to my experiences. Despite the 11 hours this story uses to capture its characters’ essences and elaborate on the intricacies of their lives, I completed listening in 2 days. Needless to say, I only walked away to take care of the essential parts of my day to day Life! If you are drawn to the meaningful crafting of words about the realistic challenges adult women navigate, spend time listening to ‘Willa’s Grove’; you will be satisfied.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Elizabeth B.Nordlinger
  • 01-05-21

Great author but narration ruined it for me

I started this Audible book but won't be finishing it -- have ordered it from the library -- because I find the narration really annoying and distracting. I loved Laura Munson's earlier book, This is not the Story You Think It Is, so I'm sure I will love this one too, but can't keep listening!

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  • Helen McCarthy
  • 13-05-21

Beautiful Book

An elegant book and you’ll fall in love with each of the women, their stories and the beautiful descriptions of Montana. I didn’t want the book to end. It’s a five star in every category.

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  • Casey Bausch
  • 29-01-21

BORING

I had such high hopes for this book and I listened more than half way through it but it was sooooo boring! There was some good parts but it was lacking. I love Xe Sands but she just about lulled me to sleep.

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  • S. Lieb
  • 23-11-20

Don’t bother

Slow, dull as nails. The reader sounded like an octogenarian rather than a 40- something.

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  • Julie Ann Dickens
  • 27-11-22

My favorite

I’ve listened to this twice which is rare for me. Wonderful story and fabulous narration.

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  • Maggie Terry
  • 13-11-22

Dragged on forever…

Ugh. Dragged and dragged but it hung on to the end because I wanted to find out what happened. The narrator was very good but the story was like a heavy blanket.

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  • Barbara K.
  • 17-03-22

Forever grateful to Laura for this gift

I stumbled onto this book while researching the possibility of a writer’s retreat to attend this year. What a powerful labor of love!! A story that grips the heart on so many levels, yet delivered with such tenderness. Bravo to the author.