11 July 2009

Review: The Castaways by Elin Hilderbrand

Eight people, four couples, one island. From the outside, they were a happy and blessed group who traveled together, celebrated together, and raised their children together. The day that Addison and Pheobe, the Chief and Andrea, and Jeffrey and Delilah learned of the sailing accident that killed Greg and Tess, all illusions would be shattered.

Castaways is a novel told from six viewpoints as each friend tries to make sense of the deaths and of the events that led to that fateful day. Was it just a simple capsizing in bad weather? Or could the accident have been the result of foul play? From the first page, when we learn about the deaths, to last page, when we learn what happens one year later, the true stories of each castaway are revealed layer by layer. Eventually, all the pieces are provided and we can assemble them into a coherent whole.

Hilderbrand introduces us to imperfect, self-reflecting, and self-involved characters who are not easy to like. Their lives seem to veer off course onto paths that most of us would not take. Regardless, the story is addictive, and the reader is compelled to see the drama through to the end. The multiple connections and gulfs between and among the couples drive the plot forward, keeping us guessing until all is brought to light.

Although a few extraneous characters are described in more detail than was probably necessary, Hilderbrand has written a tight, well-told story that makes a good summer read. I recommend the book and plan to explore the author's other novels.

Castaways has a great website with discussion forums, photographs of Nantucket, and even a yummy-sounding summer cocktail recipe!

Published by Little, Brown, 2009
ISBN-13: 9780316043892
Challenges A-Z Author, 999, 100+
YTD: 55
Rating: B


Sandy Nawrot 7/11/09, 7:30 AM  

All of the reviews I've read so far on the tour have been favorable. It was even mentioned as a "Noteworthy" book on my Kindle! Somebody out there is doing a good marketing job!

Anonymous,  7/11/09, 8:17 AM  

I'm looking forward to this one. I have one of her other books on my shelves, but haven't gotten to it yet.

bermudaonion 7/11/09, 8:31 AM  

Fantastic review! I enjoyed this book - there was more to it than I was expecting.

Nise' 7/11/09, 8:36 AM  

You are so right! I could not relate to the excess of their lives, but had to keep reading to find out what happened. Great review.

Julie P. 7/11/09, 8:56 AM  

I wasn't sure if I would like this book, but I think it was the perfect escape read. I thought the characters were all very flawed which made the book interesting.

Nicole (Linus's Blanket) 7/11/09, 11:01 AM  

It was a bit like watching a train wreck, but I enjoyed every minute if it.

Michelle 7/11/09, 11:22 AM  

It sounds like Lost! great review!

The Tome Traveller 7/11/09, 11:24 AM  

I liked this one too. I was expecting chick lit, so I was pleasantly surprised to find the depth and complexity.

Joanne ♦ The Book Zombie 7/11/09, 1:40 PM  

I'm really looking forward to reading this one. I think it will be the perfect summer read!

Julia Phillips Smith 7/11/09, 6:03 PM  

I like books that explore one incident from several different viewpoints.

Anonymous,  7/11/09, 6:45 PM  

I have this on my list...can't wait!

Nely 7/11/09, 6:49 PM  

Great review - I enjoyed this one too! :D

Angela 7/11/09, 7:25 PM  

I haven't heard any bad reviews for this blog yet - and I believe this is about the seventh review I've read. I've already added the book to my to-read list.

Thanks for the review.

Anna 7/12/09, 8:15 AM  

I've heard such good things about this one. I can't wait to read it.

Diary of an Eccentric

Dorte H 7/12/09, 3:45 PM  

The structure of this book sounds really appealing!

Darlene 7/12/09, 6:30 PM  

Nice review! I agree that this story was addictive. Once you got going and go to know everyone better you just had to know where it would end up. I'm looking forward to reading more of her books.

Melody 7/12/09, 7:40 PM  

I've read a lot of good reviews about this book so I'll definitely keep a look out for it.

The Reading Momster 7/13/09, 8:22 AM  

At some place I actually read that it had great character building...!
It has great reviews :)
Something to look out for!

Belle 7/13/09, 1:44 PM  

This one looks like a great summer read. Maybe I'll win a copy!

Dawn - She is Too Fond of Books 7/14/09, 9:09 PM  

I was pleasantly surprised by how strongly I like THE CASTAWAYS. Though the storyline had a few 'too convenient' elements, the character development was key for me. I neglected to mention the varied viewpoints in my review, and that added so much to the telling.

I enjoyed the opening lines of your review ... what a teaser!

Serena 7/24/09, 9:59 AM  

I can't wait to read this book. It sounds fantastic. great review.

Thanks for stopping by. I read all comments and may respond here, via e-mail, or on your blog. I visit everyone who comments, but not necessarily right away.

I cannot turn off word verification, but if you are logged into Blogger you can ignore the captcha. I have set posts older than 14 days to be on moderation. I can no longer accept anonymous comments. I'm so sorry if this means you have to register or if you have trouble commenting.


All content and photos (except where noted) copyright © cbl for Beth Fish Reads 2008-2020. All rights reserved.



To The Blogger Guide, Blogger Buster, Tips Blogger, Our Blogger Templates, BlogU, and Exploding Boy for the code for customizing my blog. To Old Book Illustrations for my ID photo. To SEO for meta-tag analysis. To Blogger Widgets for the avatars in my comments and sidebar gadgets. To Review of the Web for more gadgets. To SuziQ from Whimpulsive for help with my comments section. To Cool Tricks N Tips for my Google +1 button.

Quick Linker



  © Blogger template Coozie by Ourblogtemplates.com 2008

Back to TOP