Summer Island

Summer Island

A Novel

Paperback - 2010
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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER * The author of the cherished bestseller On Mystic Lake returns with a poignant, funny, luminous novel about a mother and daughter--the complex ties that bind them, the past that separates them, and the healing that comes with forgiveness.

"[Kristin] Hannah is superb at delving into the characters' psyches and delineating nuances of feeling."-- Washington Post Book World

Years ago, Nora Bridge walked out on her marriage and left her daughters behind. She has since become a famous radio talk-show host and newspaper columnist beloved for her moral advice. Her youngest daughter, Ruby, is a struggling comedienne who uses her famous mother as fuel for her bitter, cynical humor. When the tabloids unearth a scandalous secret from Nora's past, their estrangement suddenly becomes dramatic: Nora is injured in an accident and a glossy magazine offers Ruby a fortune to write a tell-all about her mother. Under false pretenses, Ruby returns home to take care of the woman she hasn't spoken to for almost a decade.

Nora insists they retreat to Summer Island in the San Juans, to the lovely old house on the water where Ruby grew up, a place filled with childhood memories of love and joy and belonging. There Ruby is also reunited with her first love and his brother. Once, the three of them had been best friends, inseparable. Until the summer that Nora had left and everyone's hearts had been broken. . . .

What began as an expose evolves, as Ruby writes, into an exploration of her family's past. Nora is not the woman Ruby has hated all these years. Witty, wise, and vulnerable, she is desperate to reconcile with her daughter. As the magazine deadline draws near and Ruby finishes what has begun to seem to her an act of brutal betrayal, she is forced to grow up and at last to look at her mother--and herself--through the eyes of a woman. And she must, finally, allow herself to love.

Summer Island is a beautiful novel, funny, tender, sad, and ultimately triumphant.
Publisher: New York : Ballantine Books Trade Paperbacks, 2010, c2001.
Edition: Ballantine Books trade paperback edition
ISBN: 9780345483447
Characteristics: 427 pages ;,21 cm.


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Jun 27, 2018

Good story. It drug a little for me but very readable.

Jan 17, 2018

Love this book. There hasn't been a Kristen Hannah book yet that doesn't grab me and not let me put it down.

Jul 10, 2013

Loved it.

Mar 29, 2012

Another good one from Hannah with all the elements we've come to expect. Ruby, struggling to become famous in California harbors a grudge against the mother who left her and her sister Caroline as teens. Nora, is now famous herself as a radio and newspaper advice guru. However, her fans don't know her past and when it comes out it seems she is ruined. After an accident leaves her injured Ruby agrees to come and take care of Nora on Summer Island, secretly planning to write a tell-all article for $50 grand. Meanwhile an old love of Ruby's with a dying brother come to neighboring Lopez Island. All come together with many tears and heart-felt confessions. Some might see it as a little sappy but I like Hannah's recurrent theme that the conceptions we carry with us from childhood are not necessarily valid. Children see things as children and as adults parents and sons and daughters can come to understandings if they can communicate as adults. I envy her characters sometimes in their abilities to leave the past behind.

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