Read Goodbye for Now by Laurie Frankel Online

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In the spirit of ONE DAY, comes a fresh and warmhearted love story for the 21st century. Sometimes the end is just the beginning . . . Sam Elling works for an internet dating company, but he still can't get a date. So he creates an algorithm that will match you with your soul mate. Sam meets the love of his life, a coworker named Meredith, but he also gets fired when the cIn the spirit of ONE DAY, comes a fresh and warmhearted love story for the 21st century. Sometimes the end is just the beginning . . . Sam Elling works for an internet dating company, but he still can't get a date. So he creates an algorithm that will match you with your soul mate. Sam meets the love of his life, a coworker named Meredith, but he also gets fired when the company starts losing all their customers to Mr. and Ms. Right.When Meredith's grandmother, Livvie, dies suddenly, Sam uses his ample free time to create a computer program that will allow Meredith to have one last conversation with her grandmother. Mining from all her correspondence—email, Facebook, Skype, texts—Sam constructs a computer simulation of Livvie who can respond to email or video chat just as if she were still alive. It's not supernatural, it's computer science.Meredith loves it, and the couple begins to wonder if this is something that could help more people through their grief. And thus, the company RePose is born. The business takes off, but for every person who just wants to say good-bye, there is someone who can't let go. In the meantime, Sam and Meredith's affection for one another deepens into the kind of love that once tasted, you can't live without. But what if one of them suddenly had to? This entertaining novel, delivers a charming and bittersweet romance as well as a lump in the throat exploration of the nature of love, loss, and life (both real and computer simulated). Maybe nothing was meant to last forever, but then again, sometimes love takes on a life of its own....

Title : Goodbye for Now
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780385536189
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 289 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Goodbye for Now Reviews

  • Jessica
    2019-03-24 02:32

    There is a difference between a book that is sad because it thoughtfully explores a sad topic and a book that feels emotionally manipulative because it just throws a lot sad events in your face and tells you how sad they are. Whether a book comes down to one of or the other is, I think, a matter of personal experience. It comes down to how much the book resonates with you and reflects the ways you've lived those sorts of sad things. This one, to me, felt like it fell into the second camp. And I don't really know how to discuss that without get too spoilery, but I will try: Sam gets fired from his job as a software engineer for an online dating company when he creates an algorithm that is able to find the perfect match for its users...meaning they'll no longer need to pay for the services. Silver lining: he meets Meredith using his algorithm and, of course, the two are a perfect match. Then Meredith's grandmother passes away and, wanting to help ameliorate her grief, Sam writes another algorithm. His dating algorithm explored your electronic communications to find out what you really mean when you say you want to meet someone "smart and funny." The RePose algorithm, as it comes to be known, explores the electronic communications of a loved one that's passed away so that it can effectively mimic an email or Skype conversation on behalf of said loved one. Meredith is sort-of able to talk to her grandmother again, and the two eventually decide to turn the algorithm into a company to provide the service to other people. That's not very spoilery -- that all happens in the first fifty pages, and it's covered in the jacket flap. And I think that would have been all well and good except for the fact that neither the characters nor their love story is particularly well-developed. A whole lot of telling-not-showing, most of the story takes place in dialogue and I never felt I got to know them aside from what they said to each other. Their flirtations were cute but there just wasn't a lot of depth there. Then there's a sad plot twist that comes almost out of nowhere, except I was sort of expecting it. That's all well and good, too, because that's the way these things happen in real life and I know that as well as anyone. It just felt to me as though Frankel was saying, "You know what would be really sad?" And everything in the back third of the book is described in such morose terms. But it felt exaggerated, over-the-top in its bleakness. It didn't feel genuine to me, it felt...emotionally manipulative. I'd include some quotes, but I feel like that would be giving too much away here. There are some interesting implications explored in this book -- does RePose and the ideas behind it aid or impede the normal grieving process? What are the limits of technology when it comes to experiencing human emotions? Ultimately, though, these ideas get drowned out with the trying to be sad.

  • Larry H
    2019-02-22 05:27

    There are no words to describe how I'm feeling now that I've finished Laurie Frankel's hopeful and heartbreaking Goodbye for Now. I absolutely loved the book although it really affected me emotionally, and I'm also sad I'm done with it.Sam Elling is an extremely intelligent computer programmer who works for an internet dating company. He creates an algorithm to find your perfect soul mate, and testing it out on himself, meets the love of his life, Meredith, who works for the same company. The bad news is that Sam gets fired because the algorithm is so successful that his company starts losing money, because people don't need to try and find their soul mate more than once.One day Meredith's beloved grandmother, Livvie, dies. She is devastated by this loss and wishes she could keep communicating with her. To try and help Meredith through the grieving process, Sam creates a computer program through which Meredith can email Livvie and Livvie—or a computer simulation of her—responds, as it accesses previous emails and other online conversations to develop its communications. And then, because Meredith used to chat via video with her grandmother a lot, Sam creates a video simulation as well. But does this truly help the grieving process?Sam, Meredith, and her cousin, Dash, begin adapting the program (now called Re-Pose) to help grieving people communicate with their dead loved ones. For some it's cathartic, for some it's necessary, and for some it brings comfort. But as they see the ramifications of their innovation they begin to wonder if they're doing the right thing. And when tragedy strikes, they are confronted with the decision of whether being able to communicate with the one they lost is really helping.If you've ever lost someone you cared about deeply—parent, spouse, partner, child, sibling, grandparent, friend, or anyone you loved—and wished you could talk to them one more time, this is a book for you. For me, it hit home on so many levels, as I identified with the emotions and desires these characters had. This was such an innovative yet meaningful idea, and not only does Laurie Frankel pull it off magnificently, but she helps you to see both sides of the idea. This book made me laugh and boy, did it make me cry.Read this book. Have tissues at the ready, but read it.

  • K
    2019-03-07 07:27

    Eh. Fascinating concept. Mediocre execution.What would grieving for a deceased loved one be like if a computer could generate a sort of alter ego for the loved one, using all of the loved one's e-mails, video-chats, etc. to generate a facsimile of the loved one to communicate with you? Would that be a very good thing or a very bad thing?This question lies at the heart of Goodbye for Now. Our protagonist, a computer geek named Sam, has shown himself to be brilliant at using computer programming to redefine social interaction (i.e., a way-too-successful matching program for daters which threatens to put his boss out of business). Sam then outdoes himself by creating a program that allows his grieving girlfriend to communicate with her beloved deceased grandmother. Or a computer-generated version of her grandmother anyway. Which begs a lot of questions.Without even going into all the suspension of disbelief demanded by such a premise (and there was a great deal, too much for my taste -- the computerized projections' responsiveness and authenticity were quite over the top, which I guess was necessary or there wouldn't have been much of a book), could a computerized projection of a dead loved one (DLOs, in Sam's parlance as his program gains popularity) ever be completely authentic? How three-dimensional (emotionally, not physically) could this projection actually be, and how satisfying could it really be to communicate with them? As it happens, one of my issues with the book's execution is that I found all of the characters rather flat -- the way computerized projections of people might move through life, perhaps. Sam and Meredith, his girlfriend, fall in love quickly and conveniently without any fits or starts. Sam himself seems rather inauthentic to me -- maybe because he seems like a female fantasy of an ardent, geeky (and therefore nonthreatening) but somehow charming male. The other characters also seem to be going through the motions so as to move the book forward and into exploring what the author wishes to explore through her characters. Even the dialogue feels computer-generated -- stilted and awkward, but steadily propelling the plot in the direction it needs to go.It is interesting to contemplate whether the finality of death is positive or negative. Is it good for us and for our grieving process that DLOs are completely cut off from our conscious experience? Would it be a good thing if we were suddenly able to reach out to our DLOs and they could answer us? Would that be a good thing even if their interactions with us were merely various permutations of things they'd already said? And then, of course, there's the whole artificial intelligence question about whether computers could ever overtake humans in terms of their own learning, creativity, etc.So overall, a very creative and interesting concept. If only the book's writing and characterization had been as fully realized.

  • Nicole
    2019-03-14 04:51

    Mithilfe eines Computers hat Sam seine Traumfrau Meredith gefunden. Als deren Oma Livvie stirbt, versucht er sie zu trösten: Er lässt seinen Rechner aus alten E-Mails von Livvie eine neue Nachricht generieren, wie die Oma sie geschrieben haben könnte. Meredith ist begeistert! Sie will weiter mit ihrer virtuellen Livvie kommunizieren. Und sie will anderen ebenfalls die Möglichkeit bieten, auf diese Weise mit ihren geliebten Verstorbenen in Kontakt zu bleiben. Doch damit beginnen die Probleme. Und auch die tiefe Liebe zwischen Sam und Meredith steht bald vor einer gigantischen Prüfung.Das Scherenschnitt-Cover und die Beschreibung haben mich das Buch mit einer gewissen Skepsis zur Hand nehmen lassen. Die Geschichte hat aber dann doch durch die sympatischen und nachvollziehbaren Charaktere und den flüssigen Erzählstil überzeugt. Schade, dass es mich in einer schlechten Lesezeit erwischt hat sonst wäre es schon viel schneller gelesen worden. Ich fand die Gedanken der Autorin dazu, was passieren würde, wenn wir tatsächlich eine solche Technologie hätten, wahnsinnig interessant. Es stellt sich auch die moralische Frage, wie weit man gehen darf. Auch die Beziehung zwischen den Protagonisten ist zwar sehr romantisch aber nicht kitschig. All diese spannenden Themen wurden meiner Meinung nach sehr gut umgesetzt. Und am Ende habe ich doch einen Taschentuch gebraucht.  Nicht viele Bücher können mich so bewegen. 

  • Marlene
    2019-03-08 08:30

    Originally published at Reading RealityWhat happens to us after we die is the province of religion and philosophy. The ones we leave behind go through an entirely different process, we grieve the loss. We mourn the hole that person has left in our lives; we heal the broken places, we eventually move past it.But what happens when, out of a different kind of love, someone uses technology to short-circuit that grieving process? If you can stay in denial indefinitely, are you healed, or are you just broken differently?In Laurie Frankel's latest novel, Goodbye for Now, she asks one of the biggest questions of all. What if love, with a little help from technology, meant that you really never did have to say goodbye? Would that be wonderful? Or terrible? Or both?Sam Elling is definitely a genius programmer. It's both the good news and the bad news. Like so many very geeky people, he's great at the technical stuff, but not necessarily so good at the social stuff. Considering that Sam works for an internet dating company, it's almost ironic. So Sam creates an algorithm that matches people with their soul mate, and it works perfectly. He knows it works perfectly because he uses it for himself first, and it brings him the love of his life, Meredith.It also gets him fired. Internet dating companies thrive on repeat business. People who find their soul mates on the first try, well, they don't come back.Sam still figures he's ahead. He not only got a terrific severance package, he got Meredith. He can always find another job, but another soul mate? Not a chance.But Meredith's love for Sam has come with a profound loss. At the same time that Sam walked into her life, her beloved grandmother Livvie stepped out of it. Livvie died. In the fullness of her years, but still, Livvie was Meredith's rock, and now, Livvie is gone.Sam has time on his hands, and Meredith wants Livvie back. Just a bit of her. Meredith wants to be able to email her and get a response, just like she used to do when Livvie was in Florida for the winter. There's lots of email to work with, and well, it's just another algorithm. And a little artificial intelligence. Sort of like the old computer program ELIZA, only more complicated.And more addictive. Once Meredith gets that first email from Livvie, she's hooked. She has her grandmother back. Livvie's just in Florida. Merde (Sam really does call her Merde) knows it's not really Livvie, but it sounds just like her. It does.And Merde is happy again. And she wants to share the gift with other people who are grieving. From Sam's need to help the woman he loves, suddenly they have a business ameliorating, (or is it extending?) the grief of hundreds.Until it all crashes down.Escape Rating B: Goodbye for Now sticks with you because of the questions it asks. As a love story, it is heartbreaking, but I'm not sure that was the point. I keep going back to what it says about those we leave behind, and how people deal with getting over the loss of a loved one.You probably will have the same reaction I did when I finished, which was to go hug everyone you love (including petting any animals you have). Goodbye for Now definitely gets at that sense of how grief mows you down.Then I started thinking, not so much about the tech as about the human side. The fascinating and scary thing about the tech side is that it will probably become possible sooner than we think. And would people become addicted to "emailing" the dead? Even knowing it wasn't real? Heck yes, some people will get addicted to anything. Looking toward the past would be more comfortable than forging a new and scary future.As a story, I think I was expecting more tech gadgetry and less contemplation. But the questions that Goodbye for Now asks about grief and the human response are profound and well worth contemplating.

  • M
    2019-03-13 02:48

    3.5, to be totally honest, and more like a three. But I feel that a book like this needs to be viewed in two different ways - the what, and the how. The what here is awesome, the how not so much. I will therefore start with the what.Many authors will tell you that their stories are often born about by a simple game of what if. What if a star pitcher broke his arm, what if the world began to freeze over, what if everyone died and one person remained? And now we have the big what if - what if after people died, we could still be in touch with them?Or rather, not them exactly, but a computer generated them, complete with texting, emailing, and most haunting of all, video chat. In this book, Sam computer geek first creates an alogorithm to help online daters find their real match, rather than the ones they seek through their wistful but woefully inaccurate profiles. This proves successful in that it matches Sam with his intended, Meredith, but proves too successful in that Sam is then fired for having put the online dating service out of business.Around this time, Meredith's beloved grandmother dies rather suddenly, and Meredith is distraught. On a bit of a whim, Sam suggests Meredith email her, and by loading a computer with all of the communications she shared with her grandmother, the new program generates a very grandmother sounding email back.This soon moves on to video chat, and soon becomes a business larger than life - or at least, larger than death. People can now connect with the ones they have lost, and discover they do not need to say goodbye. With this fantasy, however, comes a lot of complications as far as the grieving and ultimately healing process, the ever present conundrum of man versus machine, and how we view life once we see it as somewhat eternal.This reminded me of that Jose Saramago book where no one died (sounds good, doesn't it, but it's actually a really bad plan) and a little bit of Frankenstein and some others I am now blanking on. The bottom line is, it presented a really fascinating look at something we might all dream about (now I don't need to miss X anymore!) but in fact are blessed by not having (now I can never move on). It gets to the heart of loss and how we suffer in order to move forward but short sightedly want to skip the suffering and we simply cannot. And by exploring both the staggering strengths of machines as well as their fundamental limitations, we have both a frightening look at how easily we can be replaced as well as a reassuring sense that, no, not really.Now the how.Sorry, Frankel, but here's where we part ways. I kept thinking while reading this, Are you really allowed to write like this? By which I mean, you know how sometimes you read a book and you're like, I could never do that. Well this read more like a book that you could write if you never bothered editing or going for subtlety or trying to develop characters or make dialog at all believable. A study in craft this is not. The humor is often painfully obvious and contrived (ala Tropper but not as witty), the love of the main characters veers from not at all explored or believable to being beyond pukey and TMI. Those charming rom com perfect lines spoken moments? Maybe they're cute in a theatre, they're nice when they happen to you, but man they do NOT translate onto the page. So, the thing is this. Easy read? Yes. Thought provoking and kind of fascinating? Absolutely. Believable? Not even slightly, and the very present narrator and its highly irritating and overdone snarky "humor" did not help. Well written? Not remotely. But I whipped through this one and, thought the 'twist' was incredibly predictable rather early on, I still felt compelled to see it through.So, I recommend the what, but for the sake of my integrity, heed my caution as to the how.

  • K
    2019-02-23 02:26

    I laughed, I cried, I honestly loved this book. Goodbye for Now is a truly unique novel that focuses on how we love, how we grieve and how we let go. Sam, a computer programmer, works for an online dating company and develops a program that can match people with their one true soul mate by looking at their true interests and honest online communication. Sam tests the program on himself and is matched up with Meredith, a woman who works just down the hall from him; their relationship quickly proves that Sam's program was right on - the couple is a perfect match.Though it looks like everything is going well in their relationship, when Meredith's grandmother passes away unexpectedly, she breaks down. Out of love and the desire to help her with her grief, Sam uses his relationship algorithm to create a program that allows Meredith to "communicate" with her grandmother through e-mail and video chat. Soon, Meredith and her cousin, Dash, urge Sam to turn his program into a business - it has helped them cope in a way that they never imagined, and they are certain that it will help others who are grieving as well. As their business (aptly named RePose) grows, Sam and Meredith's relationship continues to bloom. Sam, Meredith, and Dash become adept at helping the mourners who seek their help, and watch as RePose becomes a vehicle for healing. In a twist of events, however, tragedy hits close to home, and the technological tool which was created to help others will be desperately needed by the team. I don't want to spoil the ending, so I won't give any more details, but this story is absolutely great. It is a touching story that brings up the subjects of how we grieve and the never-ending power of love.Although love and technology seem like mutually exclusive concepts, Laurie Frankel does a wonderful job blending them together in this adorable and touching story. While it does have moments of tragedy, it is far from a sob-story - Frankel does a lovely job of making this into a contemporary love story and touching readers' hearts with believable characters, universal questions, and modern themes. Furthermore, as a Northwest writer, Frankel has local details incorporated into this story, making it an extra-special treat for those acquainted with Washington state. This is a truly great read! From Shelfishness.blog.com

  • Linda
    2019-03-21 05:52

    All the reviews were good so I decided to dive into this intriguing concept. I began this book curious to learn if technology really can ease the mourning process when a loved one or friend passes on. I came away with mixed feelings on the subject. It's certainly not for everyone. The choice to use a service such as Sam creates is as individual as we are. Mourning is a process, steps to being OK in the world without your beloved. Talking to a computer version of a treasured human being would appear to prolong the process keeping the pain of loss very much alive. As in 12 step programs there is the 13th step. Living on. Midway through I found it difficult to continue it slows somewhat at this point. I didn't want to read about death, dying and sadness anymore. Death is in our lives every minute of every day but I prefer to focus on the joy of sharing life with those I love while we are all still here.

  • Katie Kenig
    2019-03-18 02:53

    I loved this book, even if it did break my heart just a little.Sam is a great computer programmer. So great, in fact, that he creates an algorithm for his workplace - a computer dating service - that actually lets people find their soulmates. And fast. He tests it, and finds his own soulmate, Meredith, who he falls hard for (and vice versa) from the first date. The only problem is, when everyone finds their soulmate right off the bat, the company collects no monthly membership fees. You see where this is going, don't you? Sam gets fired.While he's filling his days jogging, playing with Meredith's dogs and learning to cook, his relationship grows. But then, tragedy strikes and Meredith's grandma passes away. She is so broken that all he can think of is that he needs to find a way to help her reconnect with her loved one, especially when she says she'd give anything for just one more email. Back to the drawing board goes Sam, who creates this time a program that sees who a person really is through all their online activity - much like his soulmate program - and composes an email for Meredith.Oh this book is so lovely. I adored Sam and Meredith both, and heck, even Livvie, the departed Grandma. I loved the world they were in, and I loved the premise of it all. Since in the real world, I love an IT guy myself, it touched me even more. The writing style was comfortable and conversational, but with some really amazing moments that elevate it to the art form it's meant to be. The characters are fantastic and very real. And I could see exactly how these programs would work, unlike some who've mentioned in reviews that they had trouble suspending disbelief, because I know how programs work, basically. It sparked a lot of conversations between my husband and I about the nature of human relationships and how the advent of AI will alter our realities.In short, loved, loved, loved this book. I'll be looking for more from this author. I'd recommend this one to anyone who can read, it's that wonderful, but especially anyone with a relation to the computer industry.*Book received at no cost through the GoodReads First Reads program

  • Tamary Anderson
    2019-03-19 06:27

    I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads. I loved this book... so glad that I got a chance to read it!Sam is a computer programming nerd. He works for a online dating company and creates an algorithm to match people up with their one true soul mate. He uses it on himself first and finds Meredith. Turns out, the algorithm works TOO good: the company is losing money. Sam is fired and when Meredith's beloved grandma died, he begins a new "job" = creating an algorithm to allow Meredith to communicate with her grandmother. At first it is just e-mails but soon (@ Meredith's request) it branches out to video chat. As other characters learn of Sam's amazing invention (such as Meredith's eccentric cousin, Dash) it is decided that it is too much of a miracle to keep it to themselves. rePose is born. Coming from someone who has lost family members (including my mother) at a young age, this book REALLY got me. I understood exactly how these characters felt. If I had the chance to do this with my mom, I would be forking over the cash in a second. I loved that this book made an unreal thing seen SO REAL and not at all impossible. Who knows, maybe this technologist WOULD work. I didn't notice any spelling errors. The grammar is a little off, but it seems to just be the style of the author's writing and it isn't distracting at all. I will definitely be looking forward to reading more novels by Laurie Frankel.I recommend this book to ANYONE, because we have all lost someone and wished we could have them back... just for a second.

  • Aja
    2019-03-09 04:44

    This was a NY Times editor's choice book and I have no clue why. Cliche, boring characters, a predictable storyline, plus a needless hot yoga sex scene I almost threw up while skimming through. OK idea, but poorly executed. And SPOILER ALERT, I cry at EVERYTHING so when you try to tug at my heartstrings with the death of a main character and I feel nothing, that is some really bad writing.

  • Allizabeth Collins
    2019-03-16 06:30

    Description: Sam Elling gets fired from an internet dating company after designing a ground-breaking algorithm that actually calculates a person's soul-mate. The problem? The software works too well, and after one date, prospective customers find the “one” and cancel their membership. Fortunately, that is how Sam meets Meredith – the girl of his dreams. But the couple hit a rough patch when Meredith's grandmother, Livvie, dies.Meredith is inconsolable, her grandmother being one of the most influential people in her life. She has countless memories, but cannot seem to accept Livvie's death; so she asks Sam to do the impossible - create an interactive simulation from Livvie's past emails and web-cam sessions so she can say goodbye. What begins as an unlikely project ends up becoming a life-changing business, as Sam, Meredith and their families start bringing the recently departed back to virtual “life”. Can their business and relationship handle the repercussions of meddling with the grief of those left behind?Review: I was more than intrigued when I read the back cover blurb, especially since there is already a confirmed film deal with Summit Entertainment. A modern love story like this one must be pretty good if it is on the way to the big screen; after reading it, I understand why. Goodbye For Now is emotionally-charged - full of life, love, loss and the pain of saying goodbye. Laurie Frankel captures the realities of family, falling in love, and coping with the uncertainty that surrounds us. Sam, Meredith, Livvie, Dash and Josh are characters with definite impact, on the plot and the reader. I can tell that the author is passionate about her characters - their relationships, triumphs and vulnerabilities are evident on every page. I could easily relate to, and sympathize with, each character, so as the book progressed, so did my emotional state. A great author makes you feel what the characters are going through, no matter how complex those feelings may seem. I did get some serious shocks while reading, but I am a fan of the unexpected, (no spoilers). There is enough detail to keep readers interested, but not enough to ruin the resulting story-line. Even though it was more technologically modern, there wasn't too much jargon; appreciated since RePose was based on such a heterogeneous computer algorithm. I enjoyed the whole book immensely! I will be looking for other books by this author in the future, and highly recommend Goodbye For Now to all readers teen and above. The countdown to the film has begun...Rating: Clean Getaway (5/5)*** I received this book from the author (Doubleday) in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.

  • Kelly Roll
    2019-03-08 02:45

    Goodbye for now is well written and it certainly brings up a variety of questions regarding death. I appreciated the questions raised in the novel such asHow long should we try and hang onto our loved ones and how healthy really is it to keep revisiting a computer projection that can never change while we do?Can technology used in this way really help with the grieving process and/or help people come to grips with unresolved issues?Is social networking harmful in that it isolates – instead of getting together and making memories in face to face interactions we sit in front of our computers alone trying to reach out to other people.For me the most disturbing question raised was - do we cut off all electronic communication with our loved ones once we are ill so that the only electronic image they will be left with is that of a happy, healthy loved one? I cannot imagine isolating myself as the ill person from those who might be able to offer support and as the loved one I’d feel both guilty and resentful that I was pushed away from trying to help someone who is ill. After all there is a very real and powerful bond formed when caring for someone who is ill.However – while I can appreciate the book I always felt a little distant from the characters. I never really felt I got to know either Sam or Meredith as complex characters. Even the supporting living characters come across as a little too perfect, everyone seemed to be very nice human beings without much in the way of flaws. While it might be very nice to be friends with such good people it might also be a little boring.I also felt that the story had begun to meander somewhat before the big surprise in the last half of the book nor did I ever really feel much tension in the book in spite of all the death and dying. After all we know that the Dead loved one would be appearing on a computer screen soon enough so there was really no way for the bereaved to really grow. SO I am going to give this book a pass. It is not my cup of tea but it could very well be yours.

  • Kim McGee
    2019-03-15 06:37

    Saying goodbye is hard. So what if you didn't really have to. Sam is a computer programmer with a heart of gold. He develops a great program that helps you find your soul mate and it really works because Sam finds his in Meredith. After Meredith's beloved grandmother passes away Sam sees that Meredith isn't ready to let go so he develops another wonderful program that lets her share emails with her grandmother. This leads to another level and viola - they are in the business of talking with the dead. Enter Meredith's crazy cousin Dash who thinks making cheese is the answer to all of life's problems and everything seems to be coming up roses until the next disaster strikes.Laurie Frankel will have you laughing and crying in the same breath. She has a wonderful way of blending technology with good old fashioned values and characters. The book takes you on a journey of love and loss - makes you wish these characters were your friends and family - you cannot ask more from a novel than that.

  • PopcornReads
    2019-02-24 04:32

    Book Review & Giveaway: Goodbye for Now by Laurie Frankel had a book cover I couldn’t resist. It’s funny the things that draw you to a book cover, isn’t it. When I read the publisher’s description, I couldn’t figure out what link the story had to the cover but I was intrigued enough that I wanted to find out. I’m so glad I did! This is a story about love and loss, of relationships we hold dear, but with a unique twist that only social media and the internet could provide. It’s definitely going to appeal to women and I think it should also appeal to men. Thanks to the publisher and author, we’ve got two advance readers copies (ARCs) to give away to lucky readers! WooHoo! Read the rest of my review & enter to win at http://popcornreads.com/?p=4405.

  • Elizabeta
    2019-03-02 05:39

    I'm so annoyed by this book. A great idea: deals with AI where you get to talk with people you lost. But the characters are soooo boring (even when they were trying to be funny), the dialog is unrealistic (who talks like that?), relationships between them are unbelievable. I just couldn't care less about them. 95% of the book is about them, about their feelings and boring conversations. Too bad, because I really like the idea, but very meh execution.

  • Gayle
    2019-02-27 08:35

    Full review at: http://www.everydayiwritethebookblog....Goodbye For Now is a novel set in Seattle. When it opens, Sam and Meredith are coworkers at an online dating company, Sam a programmer and Meredith in marketing. Sam develops an algorithm that identifies soul mates, which identifies Meredith as his perfect match. They start dating and fall in love, and all goes well until Sam is laid off and Meredith’s grandmother dies. Meredith is devastated, and desperate to make her feel better, Sam creates a program that mines all of Meredith’s emails from and video chats with her grandmother and creates a posthumous, digital version of her capable of interacting with Meredith on her computer. Meredith is horrified at first, but as soon as she finishes their “chat”, she wants to do it again.From this experiment, a company called RePose is born. The recently bereaved hire RePose to create digital alter egos of their loved ones, and then come to RePose’s office to interact with them. Word of this new service spreads quickly throughout Seattle, and Sam and Meredith find themselves very busy with their new venture.Goodbye For Now is a thought-provoking exploration of death, grieving and the ways in which survivors try to comfort themselves. There are many types of deaths in Goodbye For Now – sudden ones, deaths after long illnesses, deaths of children, spouses and parents, deaths of friends. There are even non-deaths, as families with loved ones suffering from Alzheimer’s sign up for RePose to be reminded of what they were like before the disease. Does RePose actually help the people left behind? Or does it keep them from moving on? What about the people who can talk more freely and honestly to the RePose version of their dead spouse than they could to the living one, while he was alive? And does RePose put pressure on the dying, who feel they need to create a positive, happy digital archive for their families so that they can have positive, happy conversations after they’ve died?Heavy stuff. And I haven’t even mentioned the deaths that actually happen in the book.I love Frankel’s writing and her sense of humor. She’s smart and thoughtful, which shows through in both Goodbye For Now and This Is How It Always Is. I wish we were friends IRL – she seems like a very cool person. I also liked Sam and Meredith’s relationship, which was not plagued with conflict (unusual for a novel) but was built on love, attraction and respect.Overall, I liked Goodbye For Now, though it dragged in places and seemed to take a while to get through. There is a lot of detail and a lot of conversation, some of which could have been trimmed. But it’s a moving and sad book, and it’s one that will stay with me for a long time. If you can stomach the sadness and grieving, it’s a worthwhile investment.

  • Anna Janelle
    2019-03-18 02:33

    Gorgeous. Amusing. Extremely relevant. Heart-breaking and thought-provoking. Goodbye for Now is a book that will live on in readers' memories long after finishing the book.I'm going to try and make the review of this book intentionally vague because it's a book that everyone should own, and hug, and cherish. Discover on their own. I really can't say HOW MUCH this book affected me given the current circumstances of my life. People die. That a given. But the people that are left behind, grieving the loss of a loved one, that's a role that all of us are condemned to play at some point in their life. If I get off topic, I apologize. My fiance's grandmother is terminally ill, in the hospital, getting worse everyday; his grandfather is also ill, something that hasn't yet affected him yet but will no doubt affect him in the very near future. My own grandmother is losing her sense of reality everyday, growing old but refusing to acknowledge her infirmities. This book struck a cord with me, strummed the strings of my psyche, and made me ache inside. "Death is for life," after all. But it's the lives of those who are living, left only with the pain of their memories, that this book tries to capture. (Side note: This book is immediately being passed on to my fiance's mother, who is currently wallowing in the mire of dealing with the impending loss of her parents. An ENORMOUS thank you to both Doubleday and Laurie Frankel for allowing me this GoodReads FirstReads win. I intend to recommend this book to all persons who love literary fiction, lovers of books that cause you to evaluate your beliefs, challenge your outlook on life and tear-up over exquisitely formed sentences and plot. I honestly can't believe how attached I grew to these characters; Sam, Meredith, Dash and Salon Styx/RePose customers were three-dimensional, endearing persons. For a quirky, hilarious novel, Goodbye for Now delves into the philosophy surrounding death and mourning in a particularly apt manner. I am immediately adding Laurie Frankel's other novel, The Atlas of Love, to my "to-read" list. She is a masterful storyteller, and if Goodbye for Now is characteristic of her genius, I'll be a reader of her's for life.Love, love, and more love for this book. True story. This book will chew you up and spit you out in the most positive way possible. Go on - pick it up and say it didn't captivate your heart and soul. I double-dog-dare you.[image error]

  • Grace
    2019-03-16 08:33

    Author: Laurie FrankelTitle: Goodbye for NowDescription: Sam is a computer genius. He works for an online dating company and comes up with the perfect algorithm to allow people to find their soulmates. He uses it to find his—Meredith, who works in the same company. When he gets fired for costing his company business, he uses his skills to help Meredith get over the grief of losing her grandmother by writing an algorithm that will duplicate her online presence. When they decide to offer this service to others with dead loved ones (DLOs), Sam learns a lot about life. Review source: Library Thing Early ReviewersPlot: This seems like the kind of book where the author asked a “what if” question, then answered it. In Frankel’s case, though, she keeps coming up with more what ifs. What if your DLO was not who you thought they were? What if the DLO had spent their whole life being sick? What if you told your DLO that she was dead?Characters: Frankel has a wonderful way with her characters. I loved them all. Writing style: This book is primarily about death and grief, but it was really funny and a fun read. Audience: It’s tough to know how to classify this book. I suppose literary fiction, where stuff goes when you don’t know what to call it. I think just about anyone would like it.Wrap-up: I loved reading this book even when the end made me cry. It will be a keeper for me. 5/5*

  • Dianna
    2019-03-21 09:39

    This is my first free book!!! Was excited to have won it and anxious to read it. As it turns out, was not disappointed. As a self-proclaimed computer geek, Sam works for an internet dating company and still cannot get a date. Deciding to tweak the program, he develops one that matches people with their soul mates. He finds his perfect mate, Meredith. In the meantime, it works so well, the company loses the repeat customers that keeps them in business and he is fired. When his girlfriend's grandmother, Livvie, dies, he is motivated to create a simulation of her from her correspondence. The virtual Livvie helps Meredith with her grief. Thinking Sam could help others who lost loved ones, the couple along with her brother, launches a business. This is a tale of love, loss and letting go. Laurie Frankel's writing style at first reminded me of dots and dashes the way the conversations took place. But it didn't take me long get absorbed into the story line. It is clever, touching and laugh out loud funny! I would recommend this one!Thank you Goodreads!!

  • Emily
    2019-03-21 09:50

    What a beautiful book. I already know that this is one that will stay with me for a very long time. Sam is a computer programmer who is fired from a dating service when the algorithm he's written to match people with their perfect mate works too well and starts losing the company business, but not before it's found him his own perfect match, Meredith. However, soon after, Meredith's grandmother dies and Sam invents an algorithm to bring her back, analyzing her electronic correspondence. The ramifications of this, dealing with grief and how social media might be able to help people heal constitute the theme of the book. With clever, witty dialogue and very real and genuine characters, this was entertaining to read, despite the somewhat depressing subject matter. In the end, a very hopeful and poignant book.

  • Helen
    2019-03-08 06:26

    This novel was very moving, but has such an unusual premise that I think many people will pass it by. It takes on issues of the role of technology in grieving. The fact that this is such an odd juxtaposition made it fascinating to me. In the story, emails and face chats the deceased left behind are used to help heal those who are grieving the loss. While reading this book, I found myself thinking a lot about my father, deceased since 1998. It wasn't that I wanted to communicate with him in the way the book describes, but I couldn't help feeling connected to him. I really do not know how to describe it. I thought this book was phenomenal, and the characters engaging. Not sure how to recommend it, though, because of the subject matter.

  • Nicky Robinson
    2019-03-21 09:53

    An interesting concept here. A story around the idea that a software program could be designed, based on all of our online interactions with our loved ones, so that an algorithm could predict our responses to emails, sms, or even by video chat after we die. So we could effectively still be "communicated with" by our loved ones. The book explores the implications of this concept on the people left behind, and whether it helped or hindered the grieving process... the question of which was not really resolved. Very sad in parts but also written so that you felt emotionally removed sometimes and more like an academic observer. Interesting and enjoyable but just a solid 3 star read overall.

  • Lisa Stein
    2019-03-04 03:35

    Very interesting premise. Heartbreaking in one way. Soothing in another. A wee bit creepy, as well. Enjoyed reading it. Something different.

  • Rose
    2019-03-01 10:30

    Death and dying. When people become experts, they know what to do. Sam was not an expert on death and dying, until he wanted to help someone. This is what happens when someone so smart wants to help. They can't think like common people, so what is born is more than what was ever expected. This book will stay with me for a long time. I am so happy I read it. Thank you Laurie Frankel, for understanding grief and our feeble ways of dealing with it.

  • Jill Elizabeth
    2019-03-24 07:32

    My review copy of Goodbye for Now was provided courtesy of LuxuryReading.com, which also hosted the original (shorter) post of this book review on August 2, 2012.***The title and back-cover blurb are pithy, the cover is whimsical (airplanes flying in a perfect cerulean sky, dotted with just the right amount of wispy white clouds). The story is pretty much as far afield from those two adjectives as possible though – in the best of all possible ways.Goodbye for Now is ostensibly the story of Sam Elling, a computer coding whiz-kid who works for an internet dating company. But it seems to me it’s really the tale of the quest for love and happiness in a technologically overwhelmed world that continually blurs the lines between physical reality and cyber-simulation. This overlay is precisely the kind of goofy juxtaposition of people and situations that the author, Laurie Frankel, expertly weaves throughout this surprisingly touching and deftly navigated tale of life, love, and loss.In a very small nutshell, Sam develops a computer program to match people with their soul mate, gets fired by the dating company because they lose business, develops a computer program that helps the girl of his dreams “talk” to her dead grandmother – and then turns that program into a business to help others deal with the death of loved ones. Hard to imagine how that could go wrong in any way, shape, or form, isn’t it? (I’m not making light of this, don’t misunderstand; my point is that, as with all things, no good deed of Sam’s goes unpunished.)Of course, things don’t play out the way Sam intends them to. We all know how good intentions usually play out, now don’t we? But the journey Sam, his girlfriend Meredith, and their friends and family take is a fascinating and well-crafted one, full of the bumps and bruises and life-altering-but-seemingly-unimportant-at-the-time moments that make real life frustrating and challenging and beautiful and magical and devastating and uplifting in turns.Frankel skillfully creates a world peopled by characters in both senses of the word – Sam and his compatriots are unique and believable and utterly human, and they are the perfect teachers for the lessons she carefully weaves into her thoroughly enjoyable piece of fiction. She delivers those lessons gently, through narratives that will break your heart and send you rolling to the floor in equal parts, told from the perspectives of very real-feeling, well-intentioned, optimistic, flawed, and utterly human characters. You won’t be able to help but love Sam, even if you find yourself, like me, occasionally cringing at the ramifications of the type of world his brilliance at coding allows him to create.There’s a lot of food for thought here, packaged nicely in a very palatable and enjoyable love story. In this world in which the boundaries of the possible are constantly being pushed, in which the aforementioned lines between reality and simulation are constantly growing fuzzier, all focus is on what can be done. Frankel reminds us that there’s another vastly element in the equation of possibility that gets ignored all too often: the difference between ‘can’ and ‘should’ – and that difference is Grand Canyon-wide. Thanks for helping draw attention to that element, Ms. Frankel – and I for one look forward to seeing whether you continue pushing us to think with our fiction as we move into the type of future you’ve so elegantly crafted.

  • Lindsay
    2019-03-17 08:40

    'It wasn't a miracle. It was computer science.'Sam Elling is a genius but lonely software engineer working, ironically, at an online dating company creating wondrous algorithms that will find you your soulmate. 'He cracked the code to your heart.' He runs the programme on himself and finds his match within the same company, Meredith Maxwell. His invention is so successful he is fired because it works too well! His next invention will change his life. Meredith suffers a loss and Sam has a computerised answer for it. Does his genius mean that people will no longer have to say goodbye for ever, even when someone dies?'Forget really good internet dating. Without even trying, without even deciding to really, somehow Sam had invented eternal life. Immortality.Not for you, but you wouldn't care because you'd be dead. As far as your loved ones were concerned, however, Sam could keep you alive and with them forever. How was that not immortality?'His invention, which harnesses the modern day social networking and electronic communications methods we seem to prioritise, such as facebook, email, texting, twitter, video chat, means that someone's thoughts and opinions and their love may still be there, still be available to us even after their physical presence is no longer with us. We could still share things with them, tell them what we wish we'd said, talk with them and receive their advice. Can it help those who are bereaved to deal with loss? Or does it merely prolong forever the ache of missing them?The premise for this story intrigued me straight away. Then, when I started reading, the imaginative storyline grabbed me and kept me reading until the end. The two primary characters, Sam and Meredith, came across as warm, caring human beings. Sam is a geek who is sweet, likeable and romantic, Meredith is a lovely lady and they suit one another so well. Their relationship is touching and believable.Sam's incredible technological invention, the responsibility for what they have made possible, comes to dominate their lives. It is viewed variously as wondrous, destructive, healing yet pain-inducing, troubling yet miraculous. As it evolves, it could be said to destroy human contact with the living and yet it helps others find it anew.At the heart of the matter is the stark loss felt when a loved one dies and that connection is lost: 'You think you'll have all the time in the world. You think there will always be a later. Sometimes, suddenly, horribly, there's not.'What would we give to have another chance to see and speak to that loved one? There are moral issues. Readers may react differently depending on their own personal views regarding death. It is rich with topics to discuss and debate.I don't want to reveal too much about how the story, and the invention, progresses, because this is best discovered as you read the novel.I really enjoyed this author's style of writing and her use of language throughout. From the start Laurie Frankel's writing is witty and heartfelt, her words offer us ideas and truths, and the story is both incredibly modern in terms of relationships and technology, and yet completely timeless in its' themes of love, loss, memories and death.Goodbye For Now is an insightful, imaginative novel, at times funny, at times heartbreaking, and definitely thought-provoking.

  • Tori
    2019-02-24 07:32

    Wow - what a thought-provoking novel! I sure can't do it justice in this brief review. I have recently been reading a number of books that have computer geeks as main characters (Reamde, Ready Player One, and this one) - and this is probably the trend of the foreseeable future. Computers impact so much of our lives, and, in some cases, overtake them.... anyway, this story is about Sam, a computer genius, who works for an online dating company. After figuring out with an algorithm for how to find your soulmate, he meets Meredith, HIS soulmate. Together, along with her cousin, they end up creating a company called RePose, to help mourners connect with the DLOs (Dead Loved Ones). Definitely strange - but fascinating! Sam is able to input video and audio information from a deceased person's computer, and their loved one is then able to "communicate" with the departed. Of course, the departed isn't really able to say anything "new", but the program allows it to go over its database and make logical choices as to how the person communicated in the past. I can't describe it adequately, that's for sure. But, it sure makes you wonder if such a thing is actually possible. AND, more importantly, if it were possible, would it actually be a good thing? Sam's purpose in creating this computer program was "to help people mourn, help then get over it a little faster...." but does it actually prevent them from getting over it? Is it actually limiting? Does it force you to dwell in the past - having to remain the person you were, and not to become better somehow? More able to give? I guess part of this also depends on your beliefs about death and life. My own belief and faith system tells me that life is not confined to a material body, and I have to believe that life goes on for the departed. this human existence isn't where anyone should be forever.Does this characterize many today? "...everyone spends most of their time with virtual friends these days. Everyone spends more time on Facebook than out with people, more time clicking through profiles that going on dates, more time playing video game tennis than actually tennis and video game guitar than actual guitar. Social media just isn't that social. Really it's isolating. Really it's being alone." One of my favorite quotes!I enjoyed Frankel's observations about computer dating - how much could you learn about a person from fill-in-the-blank questions. and what is it you actually miss about a person that has passed on? How do you learn to miss someone forever? Are you supposed to get over it.? Frankel described one character as "...he had no desire to get over it, no desire to move on from it, no desire to heal or reconcile or achieve grace or peace or forgiveness or hope for the future. He desired to achieve perfect Platonic misery." One older character recognized that you don't need a computer to visit with the dead.The author wrote in an easy-to-read way, and was both fun and profound - what a great combination. There were parts in the book where I laughed out loud, and other parts that made me put the book down for a bit to think.This is definitely a book I will continue to think about for a quite a while!

  • Emily
    2019-03-19 05:33

    Weird overall concept, but somehow beautiful and sweet. While so much of the story focuses on death and lost loved ones, it ultimately was a story of life and the connections that bind us. There was a sort of manipulative twist about two-thirds of the way through, but then again, the inner flap synopsis more than hinted that something like this was about to happen. I feared that the rest of the novel would fall flat, but instead, was life-affirming.Some laughter, some tears, some swelling of the heart....enough to make me look for other novels by this author.

  • Diane
    2019-03-04 06:29

    When Sam Elling creates an algorithm for the internet dating company that employs him that matches people with their soul mates, two things happen: he gets fired and he meets his soul mate.The owner of the internet dating company decides that people actually finding their soul mates would end his company, which relies on people continuing to search for that perfect person, so he fires Sam.Sam's algorithm matches him with Meredith, who works in the company's marketing department. We watch as they fall in love and as Sam searches for his next career move. Then Meredith's beloved grandmother dies suddenly, and Meredith is bereft. She spent a lot of time with her grandmother, and all she wants is to talk to her again.Sam can't stand to see Meredith so sad, and he comes up with a crazy idea. He creates an algorithm that goes through the deceased person's emails, video chats and social network messages that allows the deceased person to communicate with loved ones left behind. The caveat: they can only say things that they have actually said in the past, so it is essentially having the same conversations over and over.Initially he does just to make Meredith feel better and it does. But Meredith thinks others could use it to make them feel better too. She convinces Sam to start a business, and Meredith's cousin Dash joins them.Their first customer is Eduardo, whose brother died suddenly in an accident. Eduardo tells his brother that the brother is dead in their first chat, and Sam has found a bug; the dead loved one can't understand that he is dead. The first thing rule has become "Don't tell your loved one he/she is dead", and every single person breaks the rule.The business takes off, and they meet many kind, loving and sad people. Meredith handles the people part of it, Sam the tech part. Things go well, until they get some bad publicity. Questions are raised about the ethics of doing this, and whether they are profiting from other's people tragedies.I read this remarkable book on a plane and I flew through it. A tragedy occurs in the last third of the book, and although it is one that a careful reader will see coming, it is still devastating. I sobbed and read through tears.Frankel has written a novel that asks you to question how much technology is too much, and I guarantee that you will be much more conscious of your social media and email communication after reading it. She has taken something that seems at first so fantastical, yet makes you believe it is possible.The end of the story reinforces your faith in humanity, and the importance of the human connections we make. Facebook friends are nice, but when the chips are down, it is the actual, physical relationships we create with each other that sustain us.I loved the characters, and the story is just beautiful. We have all faced loss; Frankel takes that universal experience and the desire to keep our loved ones with us forever and touches your heart with her moving, emotional novel.