THE BOOKSHOP AT WATER'S END by Patti Callahan Henry

THE BOOKSHOP AT WATER'S END

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Two best friends find unexpected healing when they return to the beloved beach town where tragedy occurred.

Bonny and Lainey spent their childhood summers in Watersend, South Carolina, staying in a house between the river and the ocean. But after Lainey’s alcoholic mother disappeared, they never returned. Now an adult, Bonny is looking for a change. She’s planning to leave both her job and her husband—that is, until Owen, Lainey’s brother, walks into the ER where she's a doctor. Bonny’s been in love with him since they were kids, and his presence throws her off so much that a patient dies under her distracted watch. As the hospital investigates her role in the death, Bonny decides to go back to Watersend. She brings along her teenage daughter, Piper, and convinces Lainey to come with her children. Piper is having problems of her own, having failed her freshman year of college and gotten arrested for public intoxication. Although Piper and Lainey are there reluctantly, all three women quickly become entrenched in the town. As Bonny attempts to figure out what direction her life and career should take, Piper falls for a local boy, and Lainey tries to find out just what happened to her mother. It turns out that the local bookshop owner, Mimi, has a knack for helping people discover what they need—and she may know something about Lainey’s mother, as well. Henry (The Idea of Love, 2015, etc.) creates a world that feels rich and real—readers can practically hear the rushing river, see the ocean waves, and smell the hydrangea bushes. Some of the plotlines, specifically Bonny’s relationship with Owen, don’t feel quite fleshed out enough. But that’s forgivable, as this is primarily a story about Bonny, Lainey, and Piper, their relationships, and their journeys toward happiness.

A quiet, atmospheric look at friendship, forgiveness, and second chances.

Pub Date: July 11th, 2017
ISBN: 978-0-399-58311-7
Page count: 352pp
Publisher: Berkley
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1st, 2017




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