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Saturday, September 11, 2010

Review - The Island by Elin Hilderbrand

A well written tale of human emotional struggles great for a summer read.
The Island: A Novel (Audiobook CD) by Elin Hilderbrand
    The Island: A Novel (Audiobook CD)
  • Audio CD
  • Publisher: Hachette Audio; Unabridged edition (July 6, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 160788240X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1607882404
Genre: Women's Literature/Chick Lit
Rating: 4.0 of 5.0
Birdie Cousins has planned a getaway with her daughter Chess on rustic, charming Tuckernuck Island off the coast of Nantucket, a chance to bond before Chess's upcoming marriage. Birdie's been through a difficult divorce herself, so she knows the big commitment that marriage entails. She's only recently dared to tiptoe back into the waters of romance.

When Chess abruptly breaks off the wedding and her fiancé shockingly dies in a rock climbing accident, it leaves Chess feeling guilty and deeply depressed. Birdie circles the wagons, convincing her younger daughter Tate, and her own sister India to join them on Tuckernuck for the month of July. Secrets and intrigue soon make their way to the surface, as Elin Hilderbrand once again weaves a masterful story of summer suspense.

Review: This is an engaging drama touching on lots of human emotions from grief, joy, guilt, despair and love, all encompassed in the art of living everyday lifes.

The four women each go to the rustic cottage in Tuckernuck with very different feelings and goals. Mother Birdie’s primary goal is to help normally vibrant Chess open up about why she unexpectedly ended her engagement and to help her overcome the grief when her ex fiancé tragically died.  Chess just wants to hide in her own sorrow and guilt which is often the way of the severely depressed.  The depression was probably the only emotion I had difficulty relating too.

Sister Tate, a computer wizard and tomboy, is willing to try to help reach Chess but secretly she fantasizes about pursuing her childhood crush on Barrett, who is now the new caretaker for the Island. Is there any chance that he will be available and that she could attract him now that Chess is not in a position to be as flirty as she was when they were all teenagers?

Aunt India isn’t sure about going back to the cottage which contains many memories of her famous artist husband who committed suicide 15 years earlier. But she is willing to be there for family and maybe she will think through her recent situation involving a star, female, art pupil.

Birdie has left behind a new romance with Hank who had unexpectedly swept her off her feet. But she runs into problems when she tries to connect with Hank at a distance. Surprisingly, and rather sweetly, she reaches out to her ex husband for support.

Again, as with The Castaways, I enjoyed how this author presents the story by chapters from the perspective of each of the four women. You are pulled along wanting to know the history and secrets that will be revealed and the future prospects for each character.

The narrator did a fine job of presenting the emotions and keeping a good flow.  Although I am not big on drama or “chick” lit, I like how this author is able to wrap you in a world of emotions set in a location that is totally distinct. If you enjoy a book chock full of emotion I think you will like this book and this author.


Enter the Giveaway for a chance to win one of three copies of the audiobook thanks to Hachette and Anna.

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