Friday, July 16, 2010

The Castaways - Elin Hilderbrand

With rumors of infidelity straining Greg and Tess MacAvoy's marriage, the couple head out on their sailboat one early-summer day to celebrate their wedding anniversary, hoping the roughest waters are behind them. But in an accident off Nantucket, they mysteriously drown, leaving behind two small children as well as the three couples who have long been their closest friends. Tragedy brings to the surface long-simmering conflicts and emotions, and the MacAvoys' six grieving friends find themselves unprepared for the revelation of secret upon secret as they struggle to answer the question: What happened to Greg and Tess?
The Castaways probes the boundaries of friendship and forgiveness as it tells a page-turning story of passion, betrayal, and suspense, filled with the perfect details of summer island life that have made Elin Hilderbrand's novels beloved bestsellers.

Title: The Castaways
Genre: Adult Fiction
Publisher: Back Bay Books, Little, Brown and Company
Publication Date: July 1, 2009. Paperback edition published June 8, 2010.
My Rating: 3/5

Tess and Greg are at the center of a close-knit group of friends. When they die unexpectedly in a boating accident, their friends are left to pick up the pieces and carry on with their lives. They leave behind two children, whom the group of friends has decided to raise. The three couples are left to deal with their grief in some sort of fashion, all the while uncovering secrets, betrayals, and the truth.
The characters were all well-developed. I enjoyed some more so than others. They all remember different memories throughout the book. We get to enjoy all of these flashbacks courtesy of the 6 remaining friends. The story deftly weaves a sense of mystery, and suspense throughout the book as certain secrets are revealed. The one thing I didn't find enjoyable, was the fact that these characters all seemed to pine after, or have illicit affairs with another member of the group. I found the plot dragged a bit. I would have enjoyed it more, had some of the characters reacted to the uncovered secrets. They seemed to show no emotion, and took everything in stride. The book also wraps up smoothly. Everything is accounted for, and explained fully.
It was interesting to see what actually did happen, though I wish that there had been more of a mystery to the novel.
All in all, this would be a good beach read. It isn't too heavy, but there is a lot of back and forth between the 6 remaining friends. Their voices are distinctive, and it was intriguing to see how the story unraveled.

Many thanks goes to Valerie from Hachette for sending this book for review. I received this book free of charge in exchange for an honest review.

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