About the Book:
Every August, four women would gather together to spend a week at the beach, renting a new house each year. The ritual began when they were in their twenties and their husbands were in medical school, and became a mainstay of every summer thereafter. Their only criteria was oceanfront and isolation, their only desire to strengthen their far-flung friendships. They called themselves the Girls of August. But when one of the Girls dies tragically, the group slowly drifts apart and their vacations together are brought to a halt. Years later, a new marriage reunites them and they decide to come together once again on a remote barrier island off the South Carolina coast. There, far from civilization, the women make startling discoveries that will change them in ways they never expected.
I loved the writing. I found myself reading passages out loud because I loved the way they sounded. The story was told in the first person and felt like I was sitting on the porch listening to her telling me what happened. I liked reading a book about women who were not young anymore--these women were in their forties, for the most part. Even though I really enjoy romance novels, I liked the fact that this book did not have a stock plot. The beach setting was fabulous and Anne Rivers Siddons made it come to life in my mind.
What didn't I like? I didn't like the way the three old members of the group treated the newcomer. I found them to be mean and rude. While I can understand them not inviting this 23 year old into their inner circle, I found them to be rude to Baby. I also found there were a lot of things going on that were never really explained--they were brought up and as a reader I'd hope for more information but it never came. We know that all three of the older women will be facing big life changes when they get home, but the book ends with a boat on its way, not with them at home. What made Baby marry a man that much older than she is? What was her relationship with her family? To me there were just too many loose ends and unanswered questions--we joined these women for two weeks on the beach, but we don't know what happens when they go home.
I'd like to thank the publisher for making a review copy available via NetGalley. Grade: B.