28 Summers by Elin Hilderbrand
It’s no secret that I absolutely love Elin’s books. I started with The Blue Bistro when I was 19 years old, working in my hometown at a bar on Lake Okoboji in the summertime. It’s not Nantucket, but I could always relate so much to her characters living for the summers and taking full advantage of every bit of sunshine! While I haven’t read her books for 28 Summers, I’m on year 11 and there’s still something so special about a new Elin book heading into summer! I have come to love listening to Elin’s stories narrated by Erin Bennett. She is fabulous!
28 Summers is the story of Mallory and Jake and their “Same Time Next Year” affair based on the classic film. They spend one weekend each year together and escape their real lives/worries. The story flashes back to the summers leading up to the present day, it’s such an original way of telling this love story that spans so many decades.
Each chapter actually starts with “What are we talking about in…” and then preps us on the big events of that particular year. Not only does she mention those events, but then weaves them into the story, making this a unique historical fiction piece! From 1993 to today, from 9/11 to the Me Too movement she explores so much history, making this rise above your typical fun beach read.
I love Elin’s books for so many reasons but her characters are the reason I keep coming back. She dives in deep, especially in this one as you see such a large span of time with them. I loved Mallory’s character, a teacher who inherited her aunt’s house on Nantucket and totally falls in love with the island. She’s so independent and strong, men are her only vice which so many readers can relate to. There are so many other side characters you will also love. This one is full of strong female characters!
This book is just beautiful. It’s the ultimate summer book you need. It lets you escape to Nantucket Island. She writes island life like no one else can down to the food the characters eat and cocktails they sip on. Her passion for the island and for cooking is always so evident, even in her fiction. She’s a total master at all kinds of storytelling and one of my all-time favorite authors.
The Guest List by Lucy Foley
The Guest List was my first novel by Lucy Foley and I really enjoyed it. So many people compared her writing to classic Agatha Christie and I totally got that vibe, plus she had the same atmospheric quality about her writing that Ruth Ware does, and I absolutely love it! The forgotten island setting was so creepy and ominous. She wrote the setting so well and made it feel like the bog and cliffs were coming for the characters as much as they were coming for each other.
Summary “On an island off the windswept Irish coast, guests gather for the wedding of the year – the marriage of Jules Keegan and Will Slater. Old friends. Past grudges. Happy families. Hidden jealousies. Thirteen guests. One body.
The wedding cake has barely been cut when one of the guests is found dead. And as a storm unleashes its fury on the island, everyone is trapped. All have a secret. All have a motive.
One guest won’t leave this wedding alive . . .”
I feel like I always say this but trapping people together in place they can’t escape, throwing in a murder and a whole lot of characters with motives, things go from bad to worse in the best way. It’s my favorite, plus obviously one of the reasons I love thrillers so much.
Foley expertly weaves each character’s past together as we jump back and forth in time, and she drops clues along the way. We see multiple perspectives, which was even more fun with so many fantastic narrators on the audio! This is one seriously twisty book and everything we learn throughout is important in the end! I literally sat with my jaw-dropped when the big reveals came! Everything comes to a head and you’re just along for one crazy ride. I highly recommend this one if you’re looking for a book you can’t put down and if you’re a fan of audiobooks, this one is perfection!
My name is Kylie Sebert. I'm a native of Spirit Lake and currently living in the literary hub of Portland, Maine! I have Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing, with an emphasis in fiction, and now hope to begin a novel writing career. You can find me on Instagram and Facebook as @notsotwentysomething. As with most writers, one of my passions is discovering and reading great books. I hope my reviews will spark an excitement for literature in people around the Great Lakes area!