Tuesday, May 19, 2015

The Guest Cottage by Nancy Thayer

Published May 12, 2015 by Ballantine Books

Sensible thirty-six-year-old Sophie Anderson has always known what to do. She knows her role in life: supportive wife of a successful architect and calm, capable mother of two. But on a warm summer night, as the house grows quiet around her and her children fall asleep, she wonders what’s missing from her life. When her husband echoes that lonely question, announcing that he’s leaving her for another woman, Sophie realizes she has no idea what’s next. Impulsively renting a guest cottage on Nantucket from her friend Susie Swenson, Sophie rounds up her kids, Jonah and Lacey, and leaves Boston for a quiet family vacation, minus one.

Also minus one is Trevor Black, a software entrepreneur who has recently lost his wife. Trevor is the last person to imagine himself, age thirty and on his own, raising a little boy like Leo—smart and sweet, but grappling constantly with his mother’s death, growing more and more closed off. Hoping a quiet summer on the Nantucket coast will help him reconnect with Leo, Trevor rents a guest house on the beautiful island from his friend Ivan Swenson.

Best-laid plans run awry when Sophie and Trevor realize they’ve mistakenly rented the same house. Still, determined to make this a summer their kids will always remember, the two agree to share the Swensons’ Nantucket house. But as the summer unfolds and the families grow close, Sophie and Trevor must ask themselves if the guest cottage is all they want to share.

Inspiring and true to life, The Guest Cottage is Nancy Thayer at her finest, inscribing in graceful, knowing prose matters of the heart and the meaning of family.

My Thoughts…

Let me start with the ending.   Oh My Gosh… I swooned, I had tears, I loved it.    Have you ever started a book and had a good idea of how it should end?   That is how I felt about this book.   I knew what I wanted to happen but who knows if the author followed the same thought line.   I got to about 75% done and knew I would get nothing else done. 

On to the story.  This story was simple and easy to follow.  I feel like that allowed me to really understand the characters and get to know their true feelings.   Even when the characters did not know their own feelings, I could see where they were heading.   I love that I was not always sure how Sophie and Trevor would work thinks out, but that I was sure that they would.  Somehow, someway, and in their own time.  

The Guest Cottage is a story of families and how their dynamics can change.    How the loss, whether in death or divorce, of one family member can tip their world upside down and how the families can come together to make their own happy ending.    Watching Trevor try to deal with the death of his wife and how his adorable son is dealing with it, broke my heart.   For a son to lose his mother at such a young age is difficult for anyone, much less a dad who doesn’t have much support.    Then there was Sophie.  I could not believe how strong she was while trying to come to terms with a cheating husband and the possibility of a divorce.     She kept herself strong for herself, but mostly for her children.   I am not sure I could have done that.   

This is a great summer read.  It is a Feel-Good story.   I recommend checking The Guest Cottage out.  

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