Book Review: A HUNDRED SUMMERS

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“Summer of 1938: A scandalous love triangle and a famous hurricane converge in a New England beach community. Add in a betrayal between friends, a marriage for money, and a Yankee pitcher, and it’s a perfect storm.” —Good Housekeeping

From the Publisher

One of summer’s best beach reads, as named by People magazine, Vanity FairO: The Oprah Magazine and Good Housekeeping.

Memorial Day, 1938: New York socialite Lily Dane has just returned with her family to the idyllic oceanfront community of Seaview, Rhode Island, expecting another placid summer season among the familiar traditions and friendships that sustained her after heartbreak.

That is, until Greenwalds decide to take up residence in Seaview.

Nick and Budgie Greenwald are an unwelcome specter from Lily’s past: her former best friend and her former fiancé, now recently married—an event that set off a wildfire of gossip among the elite of Seaview, who have summered together for generations. Budgie’s arrival to restore her family’s old house puts her once more in the center of the community’s social scene, and she insinuates herself back into Lily’s friendship with an overpowering talent for seduction…and an alluring acquaintance from their college days, Yankees pitcher Graham Pendleton. But the ties that bind Lily to Nick are too strong and intricate to ignore, and the two are drawn back into long-buried dreams, despite their uneasy secrets and many emotional obligations.

Under the scorching summer sun, the unexpected truth of Budgie and Nick’s marriage bubbles to the surface, and as a cataclysmic hurricane barrels unseen up the Atlantic and into New England, Lily and Nick must confront an emotional cyclone of their own, which will change their worlds forever.

My Recommendation

It is not often that I’ll ignore an entire day of perfect weather to sit inside on the couch–forgetting household obligations, dogs, and humans for hours at a time–to finish a book, but that is exactly what happened with Beatriz Williams’ A HUNDRED SUMMERS.

A delicious and devourable historical drama, A HUNDRED SUMMERS has all of the ingredients of the perfect read: colorful characters, memorable dialogue, scandal, passion, secrets, and evocative period detail. The reader will smell, taste, and feel this beach-set novel, will gasp as the secrets are revealed, and will cry with–well, I will spare the word so I don’t give anything away–at the end.

This is the first novel I have read by Williams, and I can’t wait for more. Her next novel THE SECRET LIFE OF VIOLENT GRANT will be released on May 27th, and I have an early copy in my possession that I was waiting to read until closer to its publication date, but which I might not be able to resist.

Fans of THE RULES OF CIVILITY and THE CHAPERONE will love A HUNDRED SUMMERS. If you have not yet read it, make sure it is in your beach bag before the season begins.

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