Monday, July 16, 2012

(97)Summerland by Elin Hilderbrand

Summerland

Publication Date: June 26, 2012
Pages: 400


Elin Hilderbrand has become notorious for her books set on Nantucket.  A lot of the time she writes about people who "summer" on Nantucket, like in Silver Girl, and other times she writes about the people who live year round on Nantucket, like in Summerland.

Summerland starts off on the night of graduation.  Four friends, all Juniors, have decided to hit a few graduation parties to celebrate their friend's accomplishments and the start of summer.  Hobby, Jake, Penny, and Demeter have been having a really good time, until it is time to leave. Penny is the designated driver and just has fun while the others engage in copious amounts of underage drinking.  Somebody has said something to Penny that sets her off and she is so angry, that even though she has not had a drop of alcohol, she should not be driving.  Her anger distracts her and her distracted driving is the cause of a horrific crash and the lives of these four teens, and the community of Nantucket, are forever changed. 

Elin Hilderbrand has to be one of my favorite authors ever.  She creates such intricate characters who may have their flaws, but at their core they are good people and that makes them very empathetic characters. You want to hate them for their broken moral compasses and horrible decision making skills, but instead you just feel empathy for the situations they have created for themselves. I think the most shining example of the broken moral compass is the relationship between Jordan and Zoe, for in Summerland she not only writes about the deadly mistakes made by some teens, but she also writes about their flawed parents.  And how one night in June changes everything for all of them.

Bottom line, once again Elin Hilderbrand hit a home run with Summerland.  I settled into the "comfy couch" this afternoon and read this book in one sitting.  As always, the scenery of Nantucket is  stunning, the characters are multi-dimentional, and the story is captivating. Now do I really have to wait a whole year for another Nantucket tale?

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Why I Read...

I remember the carefree summer days when I used to ride my bike to the public library to pick out new books. I would go almost daily to find books to read. I read to learn. I read to explore the world. I read to escape. I read because not reading is not an option.

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