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The Life O'Reilly

av Brian Cohen

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
2917642,987 (3.65)6
Nick O'Reilly appears to have it all: a successful legal career in an elite Wall Street firm, financial security, and an apartment overlooking Central Park. He begins to reassess his life choices after representing a domestic violence victim fighting for child custody in his firm's first pro bono case.… (mer)

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From my blog

What a charming, sad, thought provoking read. I went through the why do bad things happen to good people opinion to appreciating and having a life of fulfillment opinion.

I have had this book for far too long but I am such a mood reader I just didn't pick it up. I am on vacation with my best friend and her new born baby and I thought it would be perfect while missing my daughter, partner and family back home. What a great choice.

I really enjoyed this story and recommend it for anyone that has chosen to be a career mom or dad, living the legacy of a family tradition, deciding to put their lives on hold for that 'special moment' instead of creating the moments.

All the characters were very real and I enjoyed them, even the miserable pain the ass colleagues. They had their place in the story. I thought the legal storylines were true and gave you a sense of the hard choices needed to be successful in this industry.

Nick had to be placed on Pro Bono work to be shown another side of life that he had dreamt of but never thought of achieving. The beginning of a journey that threw him every curve ball thought of but what amazing strength to get through it, very touching.

I think Brian Cohen did a great job with his debut book and can see this kind of story being his niche. I enjoyed reading an adult fiction novel from a men's perspective.

Overall, I thought this was a very good love story with legal drama and the way to deal with unfortunates of life.

I took a moment and considered what kind of person I wanted to be. I love and revered my father deeply, but his company-guy mentality no longer served me well. I was ashamed of myself. And then, when I thought about it, I realized that, deep down, after everything Dad went through, he wouldn't want me to just sit back and keep quiet. It was time to stand and be counted. pg. 120

And there it finally was. The faceless picture I had had in my mind for so many years was no longer faceless. The blanks were filled in.

No matter what the future rings, I thought, my legacy is intact. pg. 247 ( )
  marcejewels | Feb 20, 2012 |
really enjoyed 'The Life of O'Reilly'. It kept me turning pages. I didn't want to lay this book down. This is the first book for Brian Cohen. I can see real potential in his writing so I want him to write, write, write!

First, I want to get the negatives out and then tell why I think he could be a five star writer in the future.

Nick O'Reilly, the main character seemed to be either a man that is very cold or not in touch with his feelings.
I have a hunch that it is the latter. In that case, the author needs to let Nick stew in the bad stuff more. Glimpses of his anger at the firm came out in the book but Brian Cohen needs to let Nick spend more time in anguish. One thing he could do it share more of his feelings with Evan his best friend at work.

Also, Nick needs to enjoy his happiest moment more. I really enjoyed his love of music and his feeling for nature. Let it show more.

Also, some of the fancy words sound awkward. Read it out loud and see how it sounds and make changes to simplify.

Now the good stuff. The main character tells his story in first person. That helps so much. It carries the story along seamlessly. The values of Nick O'Reilly come out easily and there is humor in this book. Dawn, his romantic interest was a real plus to this book in how she related to Nick.

I am very glad that I read this book. I will be adding a new writer to my favorites. I hope that he writes much more.

I would recommend this book to those of us who enjoy trying out new authors and to other struggling writers. The author had some fumbles but he also starred in keeping you reading the pages. ( )
  Carolee888 | Nov 20, 2011 |
I saw a review of the novel on a blog and left a comment, only to be contacted several weeks later by the author offering his book for review, for which I thank him.The premise of The Life O'Reilly is one of redemption, love and hope. The plot is appealing, it tugs at even the most cynical heart and has an important and dramatic message. The story is told from the point of view of Nick, a corporate lawyer in his mid thirties whose life changes when he becomes involved in a pro bono case. I appreciated the time the author took to establish Nick's situation at the beginning of the novel allowing the reader to get to know him. Nick is an appealing protagonist and Cohen's careful development ensures we empathise with the struggles Nick faces in his professional and personal life. The relationship with Dawn is sweet and romantic, though I thought Dawn was a rather insipid until nearing the end of the book. There was more potentional to explore her character as an individual rather than of a reflection of Nicholas.The storyline has an undoubted emotional impact however I felt the writing lacked passion. The language is spare, sentences are short and analytical. Cohen has an eye for detail, but it feels impersonal. He carefully writes of character appearance and room furnishings yet the manner is dry and prosaic. There are several pauses in the story to allow Nick to illustrate his environment that I felt could have been incorporated more naturally during the scene. While the style had an impact on my ability to engage with the story, the strength of the novel is in the thought provoking lesson Cohen illustrates - you have only one life to live so make it all you can.The book has received much praise and won several awards in 2010 and I congratulate Cohen on his achievements with The Life O'Reilly. ( )
  shelleyraec | May 9, 2011 |
This book certainly takes you on one big rollercoaster of an emotional ride. From love to despair and sorrow with a blend of every feeling possible in between.

Brian Cohen has a blunt, matter of fact way of writing about events in the book making it so realistic as if they were happening right in front of you to your closest friend. It was so engrossing in that manner and kept me reading until I finished the book in just a couple of sittings.

When I read the summary of the book I immediately jumped to the conclusion that this would be a nice read but one that is sort of similar to a lot of books of this genre. I started to think about what I thought I knew would happen before I started reading. It really threw me (in a good way) when I read the first page because it turned out to be so much more than I was expecting. It really gets you thinking about life and what is actually important rather than the stupid things we worry about that don’t actually matter.

It’s a poignant story about life. It’s about sorting out our priorities and about realising our values and what we already have before we lose it. It was wonderful.

This is a story that lingers in your heart as well as your mind and is well recommended.

A big thank you to Mr Cohen for sending me his book to review! ( )
  GloriousBooks | Jan 26, 2011 |
Nick O'Rielly has it all. As a partner in a hugely successful law firm, Nick spends most of his time generating revenue for his firm and living the high life. Though the firm is successful, lately there's been some negative publicity stemming from the fact that they do virtually no pro bono work for the community. When this begins to bother the owner of the firm, he chooses Nick to represent a client who is going through an ugly domestic abuse and divorce case, Dawn Nelson and her young son Jordan. Though Nick tries to maintain a professional air with Dawn, he can't help but feel a spark of attraction to her, and in this case it's reciprocated. When the news leaks that Dawn and Nick may be more involved than propriety dictates, Nick's superiors put pressure on him to leave the firm. Though it comes as a shock to him, Nick realizes that the best parts of his life have been wasted at the firm and all his hard work has amounted to nothing. Taking the high road, Nick agrees to resign and to begins focusing on life with Dawn and Jordan, but fate has other things in mind for the new family. Though Nick and Dawn should have a life destined for happiness, a new complication from an old injury arises for Nick and soon the new family is in the pit of crisis again. Both uplifting and heartbreakingly sad, The Life O'Reilly is the story of one man's journey on the road of life, complete with all the joys and cruelties that befall him along the way.

This isn't the type of book I normally read. For some reason, I have a harder time enjoying books of this nature and often find myself shying away from them. I would have to say although this book tended to be a little dramatic, once I pushed my prejudices aside I actually found that I was able to connect with the characters, and especially towards the end, this book had me very involved.

Nick is a decent guy in a cutthroat world. Though he's put in all the time and effort to become a great lawyer, he knows there's something missing in his life. It seemed like he felt his life's work was fulfilling in some ways, but that he lacked some nebulous human connection and emotional tie with others in general, and more specifically, with a partner. While I was reading, I felt very sorry for Nick because I could see he wasn't happy and that all the work he was putting in was only wearing him down. When things finally get rolling with his representing Dawn, it wasn't hard to see what would happen; but despite the fact that it was a bit predictable, I felt a genuine happiness for him and wanted the boundaries between the two to be broken, regardless of the consequences. Dawn was representative of a lot of the things Nick had been missing in his life: love, spontaneity and the ability for him to create a legacy out of something other than his work.

Though there was a lot of tension in the middle of the plot line, certain things felt a little more loose and sometimes felt too predictable. Some of the foreshadowing was done with a heavier hand than what I'm used to, but the main thing I took away was its message, and in that respect, I think the book clearly delivered and was successful in its aim. What the book said to me was that life can be unpredictable in the extreme, and as humans, we need to realize our dreams can't wait forever to be gratified. Careers and goals can only give us so much, and in order for life to be fully lived, it's sometimes necessary to venture outside the boundaries we've created for ourselves. Sometimes the things you think are important in your life are not the things that truly matter, and when the chance comes to break away and change our lives in ways that do matter, it's imperative that we do so. All of this was evident in the path that Nick took, and all of it brought home the messages and concepts of fulfillment and desired outcomes. The book made me ask questions about my life and what it all boils down to, and although it was sometimes simplistic in the way it conveyed these messages, it ultimately had the desired impact on my psyche and made me think about my life in a different way.

The conclusion was stunningly sad, and although I knew what was coming, it didn't stop me from having a viscerally powerful reaction to the story itself. Life is what we make of it, yes, but in the case of Nick O'Reilly, I felt there was something haunting about the way his life played out. Just when he had grasped hold of a wispy happiness and was turning his dreams into reality, shocking news comes his way that changes everything about his life. During these sections of the book, I actually gained more respect for and felt more cohesiveness with the characters, and it was alternately painful and gratifying to see their lives start to revolve around the hand fate had dealt them. In a way, Nick's life had come full circle, yet in another more obvious way, his life had ceased to exist as he knew it the moment the news was delivered. It was a poignant bit of storytelling that Cohen managed with these characters, and at no time did they step out of character or become unrecognizable in their grief. In fact, they seemed to grow in their ability to love and in their regard and zest for life, which is something I found not only to be amazing, but uplifting as well. Yes, the pain they went through shaped and changed them, but it didn't change the story they were trying to write for themselves.

While I don't think I fully connected with all this story had to offer, I'm sure this has more to do with my tastes and preferences as a reader rather than anything the author did or failed to do. At its heart, this is a story about redemption and an emotional legacy, and reading it was important to me for a lot of reasons. The messages it delivered were very deftly managed, as were the character portrayals, and although I did have some slight misgivings about it, I can honestly say this read is definitely worth your time. It's impossible not be moved by the story Cohen tells, and I would bet that all who read this book will find a space in their heart for the ineffably courageous Nick O'Reilly. ( )
  zibilee | Dec 20, 2010 |
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Nick O'Reilly appears to have it all: a successful legal career in an elite Wall Street firm, financial security, and an apartment overlooking Central Park. He begins to reassess his life choices after representing a domestic violence victim fighting for child custody in his firm's first pro bono case.

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