Jessica's books

The One and Only Ivan
Revolutionary War on Wednesday
Leprechaun in Late Winter
Ella Enchanted
The Courage of Sarah Noble
Plain Murder
Gone-Away Lake
Circling the Sun
Maggie and Max
The Haunting of Sunshine Girl
The Night Sister
Tuck Everlasting
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Bedknob and Broomstick
Mister Monday
Alice Through the Looking Glass
The Birchbark House
The Hobbit
The Witch's Daughter

Jessica's favorite books »

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Book Review: The Island by Elin Hilderbrand

Synopsis (from  At the start of this steamy woman's novel from Hilderbrand (The Castaways), recently divorced Birdie Cousins is busy planning the September wedding of her older daughter, Chess, at the family house on Tuckernuck, a privately owned island near Nantucket. Birdie hopes to spend some quality time with Chess on Tuckernuck in July, but then Chess breaks her engagement to her consummate Ivy League golden boy fianc√©, Michael Morgan. Michael fatally plunges off a Utah crag just when Birdie acquires her own new beau--a married man with a wife stricken with Alzheimer's. Birdie, Chess, and their support team--Birdie's computer-guru younger daughter, Tate, and Birdie's bohemian widowed sister, India--hare off to Tuckernuck. There hunky handyman Barrett Lee flutters hearts and dampens underwear in a breathless month of supercharged estrogenic imbalances. This never-never land portrait of the rich and randy will please those looking for a satisfying beach read.
My thoughts:  At first I thought that I would put this book away unfinished.  I wasn't totally into it and I really didn't care for the characters.  After about 75 pages though, I couldn't put it down!  The author makes you love and hate each of the characters. 

Birdie was not my favorite character at all.  There were times when I thought she was pathetic, boring and just let people walk all over her.  Then, halfway through the book, she changed and I liked her more.  She still wasn't my favorite in the book but she was a little more manageable.

I had a complete love/hate relationship with Chess.  I got so tired of her self-pity (yes, those who have read this book will probably think I am heartless) and depression.  I mean, after all, she is the one who broke off the engagement.  After reading more, you understand why Chess was feeling so guilty but it took awhile to get the whole story (which is the point, I am sure).  At the end of the book, I loved her!  She was probably one of my favorites!

I thought Tate would be my favorite character at the beginning!  She was so fun and happy and optimistic!  I really enjoyed her at the beginning until she got to Tuckernuck Island.  Then I found her to be a little too self-conscious.  She would be thinking "I want to do this but Chess wouldn't do it that way".  Who cares?  Be your own person.  Then, more towards the end, I found her to be childish.  However, at the end of the book, I loved her again!

Barrett and India were by far my favorite characters throughout the book.  India was amazing!  She was so confident, independent, sexy and I found no flaws with her whatsoever!  Barrett was great too! 

I loved how the book went from all four women's point of views.  The author would get you caught up in one woman's problems and life and then the chapter would end and I would be so disappointed to be leaving her and then in no time I would get caught up in the next woman's story and it would happen all over again.

All in all, I would recommend this book.  It was a little slow to start but then you feel a kinship with all four women.  The author makes you want to live "simply", as they live on Tuckernuck and I actually found myself craving to spend a couple of weeks with no electricity, only cold water and absolute privacy.  I finished the book feeling like I had four new friends. 


  1. Glad to see that your perserverance with the book paid off :)

    I read one of the author's books years ago; I don't remember which one, just that it was set at a Beach Club. I read it on summer vacation, and remember thinking it was a perfect beach read.

  2. She's an awesome author. I've got to read this one still.