Genre: Beach Read
Publisher: Little, Brown, and Co.
Pub. Date: June 14, 2022
Elin Hilderbrand is the queen of Nantucket. This is the author’s 28th beach read set on the tiny, isolated island off Cape Cod. I have read three of them. Given that my most recent reviews of literary novels have been deep ones, I was seeking something light. My mind yearned for a vacation. Similar to the previous Nantucket books that I have read by Hilderbrand, this one isn’t all that unique. Despite this, every time I read one of her books I cannot help but escape from reality and enjoy the sights and sounds of beach life. Here the protagonist is a delightful ghost. She was a young hotel maid who passed away in 1922 during a fire in the hotel. The question is did someone purposely start the fire?
For decades, the hotel lay dormant. In the present, a billionaire has bought the hotel and brought it back to life, well beyond its former splendor. Other storylines include a male rich kid working as a maid to atone for some mysterious, terrible thing that he did not long ago. The female head of housekeeping has a secret. And, the nasty breakups of island marriages. This being a Hilderbrand tale, there is plenty of gossip, and love affairs. The male chef, who is hotter than any dish on the menu, falls for the beautiful female general manager as she recovers from heartbreak. The author doesn’t stray from her usual style. I don’t believe that she has ever had a gay love affair in her books. I would need to research to learn if this is true or not.
Of course, there are twists, usually not believable, but heck this is a beach read. And also, of course, all the characters are chiseled or doe-eyed. However, I give the author credit for making most of her characters middle-aged, which is unusual for this genre. For the guests, the general manager creates a “Blue Book” containing all her recommended island itineraries. In the appendix, the author includes a lengthy, real-life version of the “Blue Book.” I guess if you are going to Nantucket, you will appreciate it. But, I thought she was filling up pages. Links alone would have been a preferable alternative. Still, I recommend the novel, especially if you read it wearing a bathing suit, on a beach, and drinking a chilled glass of wine.
Find all my book reviews at: