Return to the Beach House

July 12, 2014 Fiction, Women's Fiction 2

16248158Title: Return to the Beach House
Author: Georgia Bockoven
Source: from publisher through Goodreads giveaway
Rating: ★★★★☆
Review Summary: The short length of each story meant that parts of the endings were too pat or not resolved enough, but each story was emotionally moving and I was impressed that some dealt with difficult topics.

Return to the Beach House is more a collection of short stories than a traditional novel, with each section connected to the others by their shared location. Although this is a sequel, it stands alone quite well. During their stay at the beach house, characters are forced to confront the things straining their relationships. They learn to move on from loss, seek independence, trust in their friends, and maintain relationships in the face of devastating tragedies. More specific details are available in the goodreads summary.

I hate starting in the middle of a series so I was happy to find that Return to the Beach House stands alone very nicely. The author does throw a lot of names at you at the beginning of each of the three short stories, but it’s manageable. With all the different characters in each story, I thought the author did a great job sharing everyone’s perspectives and transitioning smoothly between characters.

My one complaint with this book is that it was simply too short. I loved that each story involved characters dealing with relatable life challenges. They were all very emotional and really pulled me in. However, the short length made it inevitable that conflicts would often be tied up too neatly or inadequately. That meant this book fell squarely in the light, feel-good, beach read category for me. I was still impressed by some of the tough topics that were tackled though and overall I found the book a fun, enjoyable read.

2 Responses to “Return to the Beach House”

  1. Laurie C

    Pretty cover! It looks like they’re going for the beach reading demographic! I didn’t realize this book was essentially short stories. Sometimes I wonder if books like this are put together from stuff that had to be cut out of an earlier book or that the writer started and never fleshed out into a novel!

    • DoingDewey

      Haha, yep, this is definitely intended to be a beach read and it achieves that very well! It’s emotionally moving and deals with some tough issues, but isn’t too deep to be a nice, relaxing read. I’m guessing this book started as a short story collection because I think the author has two earlier books in the same format, but I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s how some short stories and novellas start out.

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