Cover Image: The Second Chance Year

The Second Chance Year

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

This review is based on an audiobook edition obtained via NetGalley.

I'll admit, this book was a pretty predictable romance. Not every turn, but I called the ending about 15 minutes in.

But that not everything going on here. There a lot more layers of introspection, exploring themes like being true to one's character, what we're willing to sacrifice for some concept of success, and how external and internal expectations affect us. Add to that a layer of magical realism, and a healthy helping of baking-based metaphors, and you've got a thoroughly enchanting story, that still manages to deal with some pretty serious topics at points.

The biggest issue I had with it was, particularly in the first half of the audiobook , there were some issues with the narration. It was like the audiobook equivalent of ADR: it seems like clearly some words or phrases had been rerecorded, and they stuck out like a sore thumb. To the point that I was pulled out of my immersion and totally distracted whenever it happened. By the end of the book, it was really rare, so overall I don't think it's a dealbreaker.

Personally, I would have loved to have seen more done with the pseudo-time-travel, but it really didn't need it, so I can't really dock any points for that.

Highly recommend!

Was this review helpful?

The amount of lessons portrayed in this book in such subtle ways amaze me. There is so much to take from this “silly little rom com”, especially as a woman working in a male dominated field. In this book, we follow Sadie (the cat lady, as she is so lovingly called), as she goes through the worst year of her life, and ends up meeting a psychic at a new year’s party. She tells the psychic about how she wants a do-over, and the psychic helps her make it happen, so Sadie follows the steps, not thinking anything of it, and ends up waking up the next morning in her bed on January 1st of the start of her bad year. She gets to do it all over again. But, during her do-over, she realizes that her being opinionated, standing up for herself, standing up for others, and just wanting women to be respected is why things all went downhill for her boyfriend to break up with her, and her getting fired, so she decides to hold her tongue. She ends up losing some friends she was really close to because they didn’t know her anymore. So many things happen in this book, but the romance aspect wasn’t salt the forefront in my opinion, I personally believe that the act of staying true to yourself and your beliefs as women, is the most important takeaway, especially when you’re life is ruled by men “at the top of the food chain” so to speak. Then after that, the romance aspect is perfect. I truly loved the pining, the tension, the growing feelings, especially after they had kissed before her do over began, so she knew all these things and had all these feelings but couldn’t act on them since they technically never happened. This audiobook was truly phenomenal and i’m so grateful to have received it.

Was this review helpful?

OH MY GOSH THIS BOOK!!! It had literally everything I could want in a romance! I could not stop listening to it!

Was this review helpful?

The Second Chance Year by Melissa Wiesner is the cutest story. Sadie Thatcher is having the worst year of her life. From losing her job, her boyfriend and her home, she doesn’t have much left to give. She couldn’t keep her mouth shut and it caused her life to spin out of control. She should be humbled but she is actually just caught up in a state of crisis. She doesn’t believe in magic, or dishes but when a fortune teller offers to give her a wish, she jumps at the chance. She wishes to relive the last year. She will surely navigate it better. Or how much worse could it go? Before she goes to bed that nigh, she kisses her brother’s best friend. The next morning she wakes up and it is January 1st of the last year, she is in her old apartment and has the same job. It was comical to see how Sadie realizes her past mistakes. She also realizes she wasn’t wrong about everything. She didn’t red flags she shouldn’t have ignored. Although her big mouth got her in trouble, she want always wrong for defending herself. As the year progresses she finds what she thought she always wanted, really isn’t what she wants. And surprise, surprise she sees Jacob, her brothers best friend all throughout the year and didn’t realize how important he is, in her life. This was such a good story. I really liked the characters and how things turned out. There were some twists
and turns. This was a 4 star listen for me. Helen Laser did an excellent job narrating the story. I want to thank Netgalley, Hachette Audio and the author for my copy for an honest review. It was my pleasure to listen and review this book.

Was this review helpful?

This book went beyond my expectations. It was a feel-good holiday romance about second chances and lessons learned. I adored every second and highly recommend. Plus the narration was fantastic. 5 stars. Thank you to NetGalley and Hachette audio for allowing me to listen in return for an honest review.

Was this review helpful?

What a whimsical book!. I really enjoyed the narrator and how I was able to become immersed into the story line. The plot was easy to follow with the back and forth and the premise was really intriguing. The romance was a little hard to believe as there didn not seem to be a lot of chemistry between the two characters but the overall growth and acceptance the FMC had for herself was the showstopper of the book. The FMC was very relatable to those who like to speak their mind and can come across as outspoken.

Was this review helpful?

I absolutely loved this book.
Did I want to throttle the narrator… Yes,
Did this book bring a flood of emotions (of all kinds)? Yes.
Lovable and relatable characters.
Laugh out loud moments.
Fun story that has you on the edge of your seat.
4.5 stars loved the audio narrator

Was this review helpful?

I received the audiobook via net galley and really enjoyed it! The narration was great and I really enjoyed the different characters. The storyline was well developed and had a very up to date view and take on social issues - especially the women’s place or role in a patriarchal society. It was a good time and thoroughly enjoyable!

Was this review helpful?

I read this in anticipation of the New Year. In this well-executed time traveling book, Sadie gets a do-over of her very bad year. She sets out to save her career and her relationship, by the changes she makes come with some unexpected fallout… causing her to rethink her priorities and appreciate parts of herself she tried to downplay. Sure, there’s a bit of a friends-to-lovers/he-falls-first romance, but this is also a book about Sadie’s interactions with friends, family, and coworkers. Despite its predicable plot, I really enjoyed this sweet, quick read.

Was this review helpful?

A fun romantic comedy with a strong female lead, and a great twist on the usual tropes. Loved the concept of a "second chance year" and it was great on audio as well. 4 stars from me (and I reserve 5 stars for the books that are literally life changing!) This one was a great listen with a main character who I related to as someone out of step with familial expectations and who has discovered that what I want in life might be different than I always thought.

Was this review helpful?

4.5/5

This was just the perfect book to start off the new year! A pleasantly predictable NA rom-com, The Second Chance Year offered a lovely take on the do-over narrative. I found this book to be charming and comforting; the protagonist was likable; and even though you can guess where the story is headed all along, you're still rooting for the FMC every step of the way.

Thank you to NetGalley for the advanced copy.

Was this review helpful?

Thank you to NetGalley and Hachette Audio for the arc! I loved this story of self-discovery and romance! Traveling back in time/ground hog day to change things is a trope I love, but it can be hit or miss. This was so well done! I loved Sadie and of course sweet golden retriever, Jacob.

The characters felt realistic even if they were just side characters, and Sadie’s journey was so compelling. The ending was adorable and I think this was truly great!

Was this review helpful?

Thank you so much to NetGalley and Hachette Audio for my copy of The Second Chance Year by Melissa Wiesner Narrated by Helen Laser in exchange for an honest review. It published December 5, 2023.
First off, the narration was very well-done! Secondly, this was the perfect book to listen to for New Year's! This was a sweet story, and fun to listen to. The only thing I didn't love was all the dessert puns. It got to be a little much!

Was this review helpful?

The Second Chance Year is like the Big of the romcom world and super cute. Sadie makes a wish for a redo of her terrible year after losing her job, boyfriend, and the apartment that she loved. While at times I got tired of her letting herself be a doormat in her do-over year, and I pretty much hated her parents, I enjoyed listening to how she grew into herself and realizing what she already had in her first life. I also loved how there was no magic ending, just the reality of life, not perfection. 3.5 stars. Thank you to Hachette Audio and NetGalley for the early listen in exchange for my honest opinion.

Was this review helpful?

I have been LOVING the new years books lately, and this one is no exception! I guess this isn't specifically a 'New Years' book, but based on the premise, it just felt like the perfect time for it.

In short: the main character Sadie has been having a terrible year. She ends up in a time slip that puts her back to January 1st of last year. She has been given a second chance to do the year over - but will she be able to make it great or will it still end up being a horrible year?

I loved this one. The romance was adorable, the time slip/idea of second chances was fun, and I loved the characters!

One thing to note with this is that Sadie's 'horrible year' is in fact not great - and while I don't mean to diminish anyone's feelings/experiences, it is still a pretty light hearted read. I wanted to add this as I know the idea of horrible experiences may not be the most encouraging to some to pick this one up, but I did not find this too heavy in content/triggers.

Was this review helpful?

I liked this New Year's read. We deal with regret from time to time and wondering what if we'd made another choice. I like that the message of this one is to be true to yourself, and you'll usually make the right choice for yourself.

Was this review helpful?

I loved this narrator! She did a fantastic job immersing me into this story.

What a great way to end the year and ring in 2024! This is the story of Sadie and her very bad year. She’s lost her boyfriend and her job all because she is outspoken and stands up for what she believes in. When she encounters a fortune teller at a NYE party, she asks for a do-over.

I loved this story so much!! Magical realism has become one of my favorite sub-genres and this did not disappoint. I love that Sadie had the courage to speak up for what’s right. I love the found family that she formed in her life. And I loved her friendship she forms with Jacob. This was such a great read with a fun cast of characters. It was giving me 13 Going on 30 vibes which is one of my favorite movies.

Was this review helpful?

This story is perfect for our list of New Year’s Eve Books. After Sadie has lost her job, her apartment, and her boyfriend, she jumps at the chance to make a wish with a fortune teller on New Year’s Eve. She wants to do over her terrible year.

She wakes up the next morning and the date is January 1st of the previous year. With what she knows is coming in the year ahead, Sadie sets off to make different choices – but can she change fate and is it worth losing herself in the process? During all of it, she leans on her brother’s best friend Jacob. Their love story is a slow burn because this is really about Sadie’s journey toward the life she deserves.

Was this review helpful?

The Second Chance Year was the perfect first book to start 2024! I always feel so much pressure surrounding selecting my FIRST read of the year but knowing I had this one on deck removed that stress and I am so glad I chose it. A time travel trope in a romance seems to always hit for me and this one is no exception. Add in some New Year’s magic and this romcom has its ~thing~ to set it apart while still feeling like a warm hug from an old friend. Sadie’s growth in all regards was stellar and as a real life brother’s best friend success story, I definitely have a soft spot for this connection. Happy 2024 to my first 5-star read and me! Thank you to NetGalley for the audio ARC!

Was this review helpful?

The Second Chance Year was a super fun read about Sadie Thatcher, who meets a fortune teller at a New Years Eve party who offers her one wish to go back and relive her past miserable year. Sadie lost her job, her apartment, and her boyfriend in the past year and would give anything to go back and make better choices. So, she does the spell and then, before going to bed, she ends up kissing her brother's best friend whose apartment she's been staying at.

When she wakes up on January 1st, she realizes the spell works and she's in bed with her boyfriend/ex-boyfriend. As Sadie continues to live out her past year over again while making different choices, she starts to realize maybe she didn't want what she thought she did. And maybe the boy next door was the one for her all along.

Honestly, I just love this kind of premise. It reminds me of things like Freaky Friday and It's a Wonderful Life, which I just love so much. This one is perfect for this time of year and I loved how everything resolved. I tend to believe that things happen for a reason and we can't bend the world to our whims.

I also thought the narration was done well. I would definitely listen to more books done by this narrator and read more books by this author.

I've been having a hard time focusing on books lately and it was nice to find one to keep my attention.

Was this review helpful?