Storyhelix Review 031: Once in a While

It’s always good to read a book that makes you think about the past. There’s so much we can learn from the past if we take the time to examine it.

If you’ve ever sat down with your parents and heard their story, this book might want you to do that. Once in a While by Linda Ellen is a story modeled after her own conversations and experiences with her parent’s story of their lives, both before they met and how everything changed after they did.


The story, set in 1937, starts off with Victor’s part of his tale. Better known as “Vic” to his friends, he is a man who is unable to find lasting employment. He feels the world is against him, and he is unsure of his future. Louise, on the other hand, is unable to think past her current dilemma, which is to perform in a play. Both of them come together as they face a major flood. This is where they really start to acknowledge they like each other. It’s very sweet.

The sweetness is followed by good romantic times, but after they end up arguing, Louise finds herself in a new relationship with a guy named TJ. They ended up getting married and having a son, Tommy, but TJ is disgusted with Louise, who refuses to give up her memory box, which contains a newspaper clipping of Vic and some others who helped save the people of Louisville from the flood waters in 1937.


1. The Frame Story. The story of the novel is actually being told by Louise as she and her children are packing up her house. She is in her eighties now, and her husband, Vic, has been gone for a long time. It’s a sweet reminder to the younger generation that once people are gone, their stories remain in the hearts of the people who loved them.

2. History’s personal and universal side. Tales like this one really how have disasters in history have shaped people’s lives as much as the land in which we live. It’s important to see how lucky we are to be where we are at. If Vic hadn’t been at the right place at the right time, he never would have met Louise.

3. It’s based on a real story. Who doesn’t love to see these things come together in real life? The story is based on the author’s mother’s story of growing up during the time of the Great Depression.

If you like history, and you like sweet romances with a more realistic feel to them, then this is a good book for you to read.


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