Cover Image: The Night of Many Endings

The Night of Many Endings

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Member Reviews

This was super thought provoking novel!
It didn’t quite hit it out of the park for me. I couldn’t connect with Nora and I honestly thought this would get me in the feels more than it did. 
It is a well written novel, and I think many people will enjoy
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The Night of Many Endings
By Melissa Payne
Lake Union Publishing, 19 October 2021

Nora Martinez was obsessed with her brother. This was apparent right away and her obsession took up much of the first third of the book. While her brother battled drug addiction, Nora worked in a public library. 

The book blurb describes Nora as openhearted when, in fact, she was quite the opposite. She had put her life and friendships on hold and spent most of her time worrying about her brother. This left her with little emotion to share with anyone else. She was kind and caring, but not open. 

That changed with the blizzard. After becoming trapped in the library with a teenager, a handsome young man, and a couple of unpleasant characters, the book starts to get interesting. We lean why the more grizzled characters are so unpleasant and Nora finally begins to open up to other people and, eventually, a life that isn’t focused on her brother.

I had a difficult time getting interested in this book at first, but once the characters started opening up and connecting with each other, the story was much more interesting. The library became a shelter for Nora and the others and it was interesting to learn what motivated each of them to behave the way the did, how they treated themselves, and how they treated others. 

This book isn’t perfect, but I did come to enjoy it and I liked watching the characters as they began to change and find hope for a second chance at life. 

Thanks to NetGalley and Lake Union Publishing for the free digital copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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The night of many endings is a story of 5 very different persons who are trapped in a library during a very bad snowstorm. They end up exposing their true selves, their deeper feelings of loneliness, unworthiness, lack of capacity to fulfill their dreams, living their lives through others, misjudging people because of preconceived ideas. The whole story is a plot to make each individual find their way through life, fight their demons, and start living in full what their potential allows them to do. Most importantly, they learn that if they stick together they will be stronger, that friendship if nurtured, helps to spread good feelings and help cure the bad ones. There is plenty of material for thought.
I downloaded a free copy of this book through NetGalley and this is my honest opinion.
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What a heartbreakingly beautiful book!

This book tells the story of 5 near-strangers who get stuck in a library during a huge snowstorm. Each has their own problems, secrets, and judgements that will come to light during the long night. 

This book deals with a lot of heavy topics such as addiction, homelessness, death of a loved one, and suicidal ideation. It won't be for everyone, but for those who want to read a story where these topics are handled with sensitivity, compassion, and empathy, I can't recommend this book enough. 

Payne faces stereotypes head-on, debunking many common beliefs through this fictional story. Her story will absolutely make you sad for those who are struggling, but it's also a hopeful take on finding support and resources, and building a new life.

Part of this book was inspired by the Brautigan Library in Washington, which houses hundreds of unpublished manuscripts. It sounds like such an amazing place! I love that somewhere exists for people to share their stories.

I don't know if I would have found The Night of Many Endings on my own but I'm so grateful it came across my path. This novel that carefully and lovingly explores how addiction affects families and friendship is a must-read.
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This book deals with silver heavy topics like grief, loss, drug addiction, loneliness, and homelessness. 

A big storm is brewing in this Colorado town and at the small library are Nora the librarian, Marlene a grumpy but sad old woman, Lewis a homeless man, Jasmine a teenager with a secret, and Vlado a security guard. They get snowed in and have to deal with each other through a long night.

I loved each and every one of these characters. It took a bit to warm to Marlene but by the end, they were all permanently stamped in my heart. They help each other break through what they are going through. I admired Nora that while in her quest to find out what happened to her brother, she cares so much for those that don't have a home and while some view her as a bleeding heart...I think she's an angel in disguise. I did not want to leave these characters but did leave with a smile on my face!
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📖Book review 📖
Title: The Night of Many Endings
Author: Melissa Payne
Published: October 19, 2021
Publisber: Lake Union Publishing
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

I was privileged to be included in the book tour for The Night of Many Endings! Thank you to @letstalkbookspromo and @melissapayne_writes for the copy of this book and chance to share it!
 All opinions are my own.

⚠️TW: addiction, drug use, homelessness, talk of suicide⚠️

📖Summary from Amazon: Orphaned at a young age and witness to her brother’s decline into addiction, Nora Martinez has every excuse to question the fairness of life. Instead, the openhearted librarian in the small Colorado community of Silver Ridge sees only promise. She holds on to the hope that she’ll be reunited with her missing brother and does what she can at the town library. It’s her home away from home, but it’s also a sanctuary for others who, like her brother, could use a second chance.
There’s Marlene, an elderly loner who believes that, apart from her husband, there’s little good left in the world; Jasmine, a troubled teen; Lewis, a homeless man with lost hope and one last wish; and Vlado, the security guard who loves a good book and, from afar, Nora.
As a winter storm buries Silver Ridge, this collection of lonely hearts takes shelter in the library. They’ll discover more about each other, and themselves, than they ever knew—and Nora will be forced to question her brother’s disappearance in ways she never could have imagined. No matter how stranded in life they feel, this fateful night could be the new beginning they didn’t think was possible.

📖My review: This book dealt with a lot of heavy and difficult topics, but handled them all very well. It was warm and inviting and full of hope. Not only was it encouraging readers to follow their dreams, but also reminding readers that they are not alone.
 I love how everyone was so human. There was little pretentiousness. No fake characters with near perfect lives. They were addicts and perfectionists and saviors, immigrants, widows and those who had experienced loss. They were real. The characters in this book reminded us not only that everyone has a struggle, but everyone has a story.
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In a Nutshell: Don’t know if I simply picked this up at the wrong time, but it didn’t work out for me as I had expected. A slow, thought-provoking, slightly-saddening-slightly-frustrating read with a hopeful ending.

Story:
Five individuals somehow find themselves in a library during a snowstorm.
Nora Martinez: librarian; compulsive do-gooder; has been searching for her estranged drug-addict brother since many years; use ALL her spare time in voluntary work.
Marlene: seventy year old library patron; suffers from fibromyalgia but hates being pitied for her pain; outspoken, judgemental, and proud on the outside.
Lewis: a homeless old man; in town hoping to catch a glimpse of his granddaughter.
Jasmine: a fifteen year old who lives with her grandma; defensive and secretive.
Vlado: the library security guard who is more interested in books and Nora than in security.
The only thing they have in common is that they are all lonely.
What happens when these diverse characters are stuck with each other in the library on that stormy night with no means of escape? *insert melancholy music here to set the right mood. Otherwise, it sounds more like a horror-thriller tagline.*

About 80% of the book is set on the night of the snowstorm and reveals the interactions (good and bad, peaceful and argumentative) the characters have with each other. The final 20% covers the aftermath of their association. It’s almost like a group of strangers trying to play therapist to each other until the storm, literally, passes over. Before the night is over, they realise that all of them are hiding deep pain, none of them is without secrets (some obvious, others not so much), and each of them is in need of a friend and a new focus in life.
Because (almost) everything is revealed in the course of one night, there are many flashbacks and reminiscences to explain the back story of each character. In spite of all this detailing, there are no layers to the characters. Each of them has one and only one dominant emotion/action almost throughout the book. This is a bit monotonous to read as they become quite predictable in their verbal exchanges. For instance, Nora only sees the best in people while Marlene only sees the worst in them. So whenever these ladies open their mouths to speak, you can guess what will be said.
The first half of the book is extremely slow and somewhat repetitive. I felt like DNFing it many times but persisted only because it was an ARC. The second half is much better if you can stick with the story. To me though, it felt like too little, too late.


The Author’s Note at the end reveals that she wrote the story after considering how our experiences affect our interactions and perceptions of people and strangers. I like this idea a lot. And if I keep this point in mind, the story does what it set out to do. But this kind of book calls for the right mood as it is so slow and contemplative and contains many heavy themes such as loneliness, homelessness, drug abuse and grief. I was unfortunately not in that mental zone. 
There were some heartfelt moments throughout and the ending gives the perfect and realistic conclusion without going much over the top. But because of the dragging first half and the unidimensional characters, I didn’t enjoy this book as much as I had expected to. Add to this the fact that the library is just the location and has hardly any role to play in the story. The only relevant library-related point was how Nora sought to make it more accessible to everyone and go beyond its core purpose. I’m not sure if I agree with her concept entirely, but it’s worth a thought.

If you are in the mood for a slow-burn stimulating read, do give this a try.

My thanks to Lake Union Publishing and NetGalley for the ARC of “The Night of Many Endings”. This review is voluntary and contains my honest opinion about the book.
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This book was absolutely amazing! I felt so many feelings while reading this book. I felt so close to Nora in this book. Just the way she feels responsible for everyone’s happiness, I often feel that way. I put everyone else before myself so often. I loved every one of the characters in this book! I think the author did a fabulous job developing them all.  I loved their background stories and what made each and everyone of them who they are. This book was so heartbreaking at times and heartwarming at other times. I loved how much the author made me feel during this book! I highly recommend this book to everyone that loves a book that pulls on your heart strings.
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This story had some heavy themes such as drug addiction, homelessness, grief and fear. But it was also a book about second chances and forgiveness. The ending was definitely helpful. The library is shown to be a sanctuary in more than one way. I enjoyed getting to know these characters, including their flaws, and seeing how the night at the library brought about some changes for all of them.

Thank you to Let's Talk Books Promo for my e-copy of this book
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This was a heartwarming story that tackles a lot of big topics - drug addiction, homelessness, loss of a parent, loss of a spouse. The characters will frustrate you, but you'll also want to give them all big hugs. Payne does a great job of describing the storm, too. I felt the bite of the air, could hear the sound of the snow pelting the library windows.

And of course, every bookworm would love to be "stuck" in a library overnight :)
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This cozy yet dramatic book got off to a slow start, as the characters were developed and we got to know their individual circumstances. To be honest, Nora kind of rubbed me the wrong way from the beginning; she had something of a hero complex that bothered me. Overall, I enjoyed where the book went and the issues it tackled, but I don't think I'd recommend it to most people. I did appreciate the beautiful flow of the writing, so I certainly won't hesitate to give Melissa Payne's books another chance in the future.
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It is hard to believe The Night of Many Endings is already Melissa Payne's third book! I have been reading her since the beginning with The Secrets of Lost Stones, and just like her previous 2 books, she tackles some heavy subjects. In this novel, she delves into loneliness, addiction, grief, and loss and I love that she doesn't shy away from topics like this. The story is told from 3 different viewpoints, we have Nora whose brother struggles with addiction and has since gone MIA on her; Marlene a cantankerous elderly woman who is dealing with some problems of her own; and we have Lewis who is currently homeless and struggling with addiction and something that happened in his past. I loved the variety we get with each person, and I fell in love with all of them almost instantly as well as the secondary characters.

I also wanted to quickly note how good the audiobook for The Night of Many Endings is. We get a different narrator for each viewpoint and they all did a great job with their characters. The narrators are Almarie Guerra, Janet Metzger, & Patrick Lawlor for anyone interested, and I was happy to learn I had listened to Lawlor before in previous books. They made the experience even better, and I think they did a nice job of helping me connect to each of the characters. While this was an emotional read, I didn't find it quite as emotional as Payne's last 2 novels, although I'm not sure why. I didn't feel quite as invested in these characters as I have in her others, which brought my rating down just a bit, but this was still a completely solid read. I loved the library setting as well, and I definitely know about those big Colorado storms like the one mentioned in this book. I love Payne's writing, and I highly recommend checking out all of her books including The Night of Many Endings.

I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
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The Night of Many Endings, by Melissa Payne, is a book that has a bit of most genres. There's, first and foremost, the mystery of where Nora's brother, Mario, is. Along with that, there's family dynamics that, at times, centers on addiction. Next there's trauma & loss and the process of grieving. And last but not least, there's romance thrown in, for good measure. Overall it's a heartwarming story.. unfortunately, I had a hard time getting into the book, at first, due to its slow start and all the repetition. Finally, I realized that I just needed to skip over much of the content about Mario. The story was much better and went faster after that. I liked all the main characters and thought the ending was wrapped up nicely. 
Nora Martinez and her brother, Mario were orphaned while school aged. She's been witness to his decline into addiction yet she sees only promise in people. Her only desire is to find her missing brother. The library is Nora's other home  but it also provides sanctuary for those, who like Mario, might need a 2nd chance.
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Thank you to the author, NetGalley and publishers for allowing me to review this ARC with honesty.

The premise of this story was intriguing in that it centers around a group of individuals, all dealing with demons in their closet while being trapped in a library from a nasty snow storm. While each make their own assumptions of every person they encounter, it soon becomes apparent that the truth is a glaring enlightenment in the trials of assumptions. Now each must face their own truths while the storm outside rages on. 

Nora - A young librarian that has suffered loss and turmoil holds hope that her brother is still alive and out there while struggling with his addiction.

Voldo - A security guard that has knack for learning that makes many wonder what he's doing there...

Marlene - An older woman, facing hardship both physical and mentally that causes her to have a harden shell and a pessimistic look of the world.

Jasmine - A young girl facing her own troubles and holding secrets the others can't quite grasp...

Lewis - A down and out man, that's been lost to the numbness of the drugs than face his past faults.

This story shows the harshest light on opinions by created without questions. I found this book both heartbreaking and fascinating as it sheds light on the power of assumptions and pain. The only fault I had were at times repetitiveness but at the same time, it also felt realistic to the issues being dealt with. 

My Rating: 4 Stars! 🌟🌟🌟🌟
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Thank you to Net Galley and Lake Union Publishing for the chance to read and review this book. The opinions expressed are my own.

This is the story of 5 people with some heavy problems in their life. They are caught in a snowstorm and are forced to shelter together in a library. The librarian, Nora, is dealing with an alcoholic brother. Jasmine is a troubled teen and Marlene is a cynical elderly lady. Lewis is a homeless man who is trying to reconnect with his family. The security guard from the library is also among the group. This group learns a lot about each other during their time together and become friends that help each other.
I liked this book-it was well written. Sometimes I thought it was a little slow, but I liked how it ended.
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"...that libraries were one of the last places someone could go where they didn't have to buy or believe in anything to come in."  

A Librarian. 
A Widow. 
A Homeless man.
A Security Guard.
A Teenager. 

Together, these individuals ride out a snowstorm locked in the library.  Along the way they learn a little bit more about themselves and each other.  The story is told from alternating points of view of each, sharing bits of their back story as well. 

The reader will fall in-step with the characters as their learn to begin living again after such tragic events - loss, guilt and addiction.  We learn no one has a perfect life, no matter your age. Beautifully written and an ending full of optimism.

Thank you @LetsTalkBookPromo @melissapayne_writes @getredprbooks and @amazonpulbishing for the complimentary copy. AVAILABLE NOW
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4.5 Stars

Thanks #NetGalley #LetsTalkBooksPromo @LetsTalkBooksPromo @Getredprbooks @AmazonPublishing (Lake Union) for a complimentary eARC of #TheNightOfManyEndings by @MelissaPayne_writes upon my request. All opinions are my own.

Nora Martinez is a kind and compassionate librarian in the small Colorado community of Silver Ridge. Nora has a heart for the homeless population and after work she can be found delivering blankets, coats, and food to those sleeping on city benches. She welcomes the homeless into the library to use the restroom, treats them compassionately, believes in second chances, and tries to learn their names.  Nora finds great comfort herself working in the library, and it becomes her home away from home. One reason she works tirelessly on behalf of the homeless is the concern she has for her brother who is living on the streets and is addicted to drugs. If she can’t help him, maybe she can help others. One night, a blizzard hits the small town and Nora and four others are stranded in the library overnight. As the storm rages outside, Nora and the patrons struggle to keep warm and to share their personal stories.

A cast of colorful and relatable characters propels this story forward. First, there is Nora, the “bleeding heart” librarian; Marlene, an older, bitter, and lonely widow; Jasmine, a quiet and troubled teen; Lewis, a homeless man who is a drug addict; and Vlado, a book-loving security guard who admires Nora. It may surprise you to find that by story’s end, you’ve fallen hard for each character! To me, that’s an especially satisfactory ending!

Where would you like to be stranded during a blizzard?

An old library in a small Colorado town and a blizzard raging outside is vividly described and imagined. I think the setting is essential to the story, and the blizzard serves to provide drama as it propels the plot forward and introduces elements of danger and survival.

I love a story with thoughtful themes! At first glance, this seems like a quaint book about books and a library; however, The Night of Many Endings includes an ambitious collection of substantial themes including homelessness, addiction, grief, loneliness, second chances, library love, siblings, complicated relationships, imperfect people, survival, understanding, compassion, assumptions, addiction’s effect on family members, loss of a spouse, loss of parents, guilt, suicidal thoughts, found family, and hope. Bottom line, this is a heavy story that ends satisfactorily with an abundance of hope. It often caused me to think of this quote by Andre Agassi in Open:

“This is the only perfection there is. The perfection of helping others. This is the only thing we can do that has any lasting value or meaning. This is why we’re here, to make each other feel safe.”

***May Contain Spoilers***
Content Considerations: grief, suicidal ideas (not fulfilled) by overdose and gun; loss of parents, loss of spouse, homelessness, addiction

I’m recommending The Night of Many Endings for fans of stories set in librararies, for readers who appreciate substantial themes with a hope-filled ending, and for those who love engaging and heartfelt stories. The story contains many discussion possibilities for book clubs, and book club questions are available at the end of the story.
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The Night of Many Endings by Melissa Payne is a heart warming but never cloying book about family, friendship and second chances. When a terrible storm hits a small town, several very different people are trapped in the local library. Librarian Nora has spent her life worrying about her brother, the only family she has left following a tragic accident. His struggle with addiction has resulted in an estrangement but Nora has never stopped worrying about him, and rumours that he may have returned to town gives her hope that maybe this time things will be better. Cranky senior Marlene struggles to see the good in people, and her struggles with chronic illness and pain leave her short tempered , but as her husband Charlie knows she has a heart of gold underneath her gruff exterior. Jasmine has recently started hanging out in the YA section of the library and Nora senses that she is looking for sanctuary from something, but she hasn't yet been able to figure out what is troubling the teen. Security guard Vlado loves to learn, and has something of a crush on Nora, not that she has the faintest idea. The last and least likely member of the crew is Lewis, a homeless man with an addiction who overdoses outside the library. Nora comes to the rescue and invites him back inside to rest, recover and stay warm. 
As the snow continues to fall and traps the gang inside the library, their forced proximity gradually thaws the chill between them, and slowly we learn more about their stories, struggles and family background.as a strangely compelling and fragile friendship forms. 
As you might expect from the set up this is a character driven rather than plot driven novel, and the pace is on the slower side. The characters are all well crafted and believable, and through their stories the author is not afraid to tackle some very difficult issues including addiction, homelessness, grief and bereavement, and not just from the perspective of the people at the centre of the problem but also from the perspective of those around them. It is definitely a heavier read than the cover or blurb suggested, so reader beware. 
I read and reviewed an ARC courtesy of NetGalley and the publisher, all opinions are my own.
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Thank you to the author, Lake Union Publishing and NetGalley, for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

This story of a cast of very diverse characters who spend a night in a library together, while an epic snowstorm rages outside, is written in alternating POVs of the various characters. This allows us to hear more of each of their backstories, which is also what drives the story. The characters are well-developed, and although at first the story seems a harmless recounting of small-town life and relationships, there are some big and heavy issues tackled. This is well done. However, I did have problems staying with it - I wasn't expecting it to be action-packed, but it did drag a bit and could have benefited from being tightened up in an edit.
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I’m drawn to books about books and I loved the premise of an unlikely group of people being stranded together in a library. This is not a plot driven novel, but more of a slow character reveal. This is a book that tears you apart and then builds you up again.  It draws attention to the misperceptions we hold and the judgments we make about others, while also highlighting the fact that it’s never too late for a second chance. I enjoyed this book and recommend it to readers of contemporary fiction
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