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Beachcombers: A Novel

Beachcombers: A Novel

Written by Nancy Thayer

Narrated by Karen White


Beachcombers: A Novel

Written by Nancy Thayer

Narrated by Karen White

ratings:
4/5 (32 ratings)
Length:
12 hours
Publisher:
Released:
Jun 29, 2010
ISBN:
9781400187287
Format:
Audiobook

Description

Abbie Fox hasn't seen her father or two younger sisters in almost two years, during which time she has jetted around the world and experienced life, if not love. But now Lily, the baby of the family, is sending Abbie urgent e-mails begging her to return home to Nantucket. Their middle sister, Emma, has taken to her bed, emotionally devastated after the loss of her high-powered stockbroker's job and a shockingly unexpected break-up with her fiancé. Also, Lily is deeply worried that Marina, the beautiful, enigmatic woman who is renting their guest house, has set her sights on the sisters' widowed father, Jim. The Fox girls closed ranks years ago after the haunting, untimely death of their mother, but seeing their dad move on with his life forces each of them to take stock.



Over the course of the summer, the sisters' lives grow as turbulent as the unpredictable currents encircling Nantucket. When Abbie encounters an incredibly appealing married man, she breaks her own rules in the name of love, fearing all the while that she'll regret it. Meanwhile, type-A Emma learns a new definition of success, and strong-minded Lily must reconcile her dreams with reality. Even Marina, who has come to Nantucket to forget heartbreak and betrayal, faces an astonishing turn of events that will find her torn between fate and freedom. At summer's end, these unforgettable women will face profound choices and undergo personal transformations that will surprise even themselves.
Publisher:
Released:
Jun 29, 2010
ISBN:
9781400187287
Format:
Audiobook


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Reviews

What people think about Beachcombers

4.0
32 ratings / 27 Reviews
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Reader reviews

  • (4/5)
    Beachcombers is a fun book to read while sitting by the pool or on the beach.It is set on Nantucket Island and is the story of three sisters and a woman who is renting a small cottage on their property. All of these women are starting relationships with men they believe have the potential to make them happy. There are some other aspects to the women's lives, separate from their need to have the right life partner, but I do wish there were more. Lily, the youngest sister, is a bit immature and selfish, but seems to do the best job of setting personal priorities. Emily, the middle sister, makes some choices that are not well thought through. Abbie, the oldest sister, with a history of sacrificing for her siblings, struggles to treat herself better. Meanwhile, Marina, the woman renting their cottage, is finding her way to deal with betrayals she's experienced with the help of Jim, the father of the three sisters. The plot seems like a soap-opera, but in an interesting way. I like the writing and enjoy most books set in resort areas.I recommend this book for people who like light romances.Steve Lindahl – author of Motherless Soul, White Horse Regressions, Hopatcong Vision Quest, Under a Warped Cross, and Living in a Star's Light
  • (3/5)
    This is a good choice if you are looking for a light beach read. I liked how the book was told through the perspective of four different women. Some parts of the book were unrealistic but still enjoyable.
  • (4/5)
    A good summer read.
  • (3/5)
    Awesome book, beautifully written, powerfully felt, full of both abundant joy and heart-wrenching sorrow - an extraordinary novel that centers on the bittersweet reunion of three captivating, very different sisters on Nantucket over one gorgeous, exhilarating summer.
  • (5/5)
    Abbie Fox hasn't seen her father or two younger sisters in almost two years, during which she has jetted around the world and experienced life, if not love. But now Lily, the baby of the family, is sending Abbie urgent emails begging her to return home to Nantucket. Their middle sister, Emma, has taken to her bed, emotionally devastated both by the loss of her high-powered stockbroker's job and a shockingly unexpected break-up with her fiance. Also, Lily is deeply worried that Marina, the beautiful, enigmatic woman currently renting their guesthouse, has set her sights on the sisters' widowed father, Jim. The Fox girls had closed ranks many years ago after the haunting, untimely death of their mother, but seeing their dad move on with his life forces each of them to take stock.Over the course of the summer, the sisters' lives grow as turbulent as the unpredictable currents which encircle Nantucket. When Abbie encounters an incredibly appealing married man, she breaks her own rules in the name of love, fearing all the while that she'll regret it. Meanwhile, type-A Emma learns a new definition of success, and strong-minded Lily must reconcile her dreams with reality. Even Marina, who came to Nantucket to forget heartbreak and betrayal, faces an astonishing turn of events that will find her torn between fate and freedom. At summer's end, these unforgettable women will face profound choices - and undergo personal transformations that will surprise even themselves.I must say that I thoroughly enjoyed this book! I was immediately drawn into the plot of a story that, in my opinion, was told by a born storyteller. I may have five books - perhaps several more than that - by Nancy Thayer already sitting on my bookshelf, however I think that Beachcombers: A Novel is the first book that I've read by this author. I may have read another book by Nancy Thayer in the very distant past, but I can't really remember. Anyway, I give this book a definite A+! and am placing it on my 'Bookshelf of Keepers' to read again at some point.
  • (3/5)
    Beachcombers is told from the perspective of 4 different characters over the course of a summer in Nantucket. All of these women are at different stages of their lives, two have just suffered unimaginable heartbreak, and each has some life-changing event occur during this summer when their lives intertwine.I liked this book a lot, except it made me want to go on vacation really, really bad. I thought the story was well-written, and provided colorful descriptions of both the people and the places in the novel. This is the first Nancy Thayer book I have read, and I have already checked another one out of the library.However, there were a few things that made me rate this book only 3 out of 5 stars:1. The character of Lily drove me INSANE. I could not stand the fact that despite being 22 years old, she still whined, refused to take responsibility, was selfish and self-centered, and overall very immature and childish.2. There were a LOT of ups and downs in this book. Just when you thought everything was ok, something drastically changed that situation almost immediately.3. Since none of the inner monologues of the male characters were ever told, I always felt like the guys were 'playing' the girls in the story- I was always expecting more heartbreak (probably from all of the Nicholas Sparks books I read).Overall, I enjoyed this story, even if it did leave me feeling a bit of wanderlust. I can't wait to read more from Nancy Thayer!
  • (4/5)
    This was a good read while I was home sick. I enjoyed reading this while curled up on the couch with some tea. It was a quick read and well written. I would love to read more by Nancy so I'll be keeping my eyes open for more of her books.
  • (3/5)
    This is a story of three sisters who live on Nantucket, whose mother died when they were young. Abby, the oldest, then fifteen, raised her younger sisters, Emma and Lily. Grown, single, and now home again for various reasons, they all take temporary jobs to help out their father, whose contracting business has hit hard times. He has even rented out their playhouse to a summer person. Predictable as it could be, but the beauty of Nantucket, and the ups and downs of family live, made this an enjoyable beach read.
  • (3/5)
    I meant to read this in the summer, making me think of beaches -- but I was on the wait list at the library for 6 months so here I am in February with a beach read. I enjoyed the characters and loved the setting, despite the need to get four separate romances all tied up in the same summer, which was a bit forced. If it hadn't been for the ridiculous scene where one daughter essentially planned to "steal" (kinda sorta) from her employer, I'd have given this another star. But that whole plot turn was so off the wall and uncharacteristic that it made me cringe. Otherwise, read this and get ready to look up Nantucket summer rentals.
  • (3/5)
    A quick read. A family story about sisters, women, friendships, and relationships. Perfect for the beach or a lazy summer afternoon.
  • (3/5)
    I wish I'd read this lying on the beach! It's worth the read just to get to vicariously visit the ocean. :) For the most part her characters were great and the dynamics between them very realistic. That said, I was confused by how everyone (all three sisters, plus the other adult female main character) had to get married off by the end of the book. I also didn't get how the dad, who seemed like a some sexist relic, was painted as such a catch . . . Hmmm . . . Now it sounds like I didn't like it. I did though--I'm definitely trying at least one more of her books--probably BELONGING (I see the cover sports an empty wooden lawn chair staring out over the sea . . . :D)
  • (4/5)
    Three sisters are together for the summer on Nantucket and each comes with her own unique problems. Their father, a widower whose wife had died years ago, has rented a summer house on the property; the renter becomes important to the plot. All 5 of these characters come alive in the way that books by this author always do. This book is a very good visit to the beach and I recommend it.
  • (5/5)
    There is something about summer that compels me to read books centered around beach communities in the Northeast. So it should come as no surprise that I picked up Nancy Thayer’s latest, Beachcombers, a story about three sisters who find themselves all living in their childhood home in Nantucket.Abbie, the oldest, has been away from the family for two years living in Europe and working as a nanny. She’s enjoying her independence after giving up her dreams for so many years to take care of her sisters after her mother died. Emma, the middle child, was a successful investment banker. When the economy stumbled, she found herself broke, without a job and or a fiance. (He was kind enough to dump her and take up with another banker in their office.) Lily, the baby, lives at home and works for a local newspaper covering the social events on the island.The book begins when Emma’s job loss forces her to move home and her depression worries Lily so much that she summons Abbie to return home. When Abbie arrives at home she finds that the economy has also placed a strain on her father. He has rented out “the playhouse” to a 40 year old recent divorce from the Midwest. Marina, hurting from her ex-husband’s betrayal, has fled to Nantucket to escape and heal in a place that brought her much joy when she was younger.Beachcombers is a wonderful story about unexpected relationships and the process of healing. Each of the women becomes involved in a relationship which on the surface may appear complicated or not to work but is exactly what they need. Thayer does an excellent job painting the characters especially Howell, Harry and Mrs. Bracebridge.My one complaint about this book centered around the character of Lily. At times, I found her behavior too childish for a woman in her early 20s. I also found myself frustrated at times with her sister’s reaction or over-reaction to minor incidents like Lily forgetting to buy milk for the house. I understood what Thayer was trying to do but it just felt a little much.That being said I highly enjoyed this book. I found myself losing myself in the story and the characters. I would recommend this book and give it a 4.5/5. Now to to check out more books by Thayer….
  • (4/5)
    From My Blog...Beachcombers by Nancy Thayer is a funny, sad, warm, and uplifting story of one special summer on Nantucket. Jim Fox is struggling to make ends meet and his youngest daughter Lily does not know how to handle things when Emma moves back home after her investment firm downsized and her fiancé dumped her for another broker in the firm. Lily frantically reaches out to her oldest sister Abbie to take care of everything just as she has since the death of their mother. Naturally, Abbie flies home from her Au Pair job in London to assist and it is not long before she devises a way to get Emma out of bed and all of them earning some money. Jim too has ideas, his first being to lease out the Playhouse for six months to tourist Marina Warren a 40-year-old recently divorced, jobless, and deeply hurt, she has come to Nantucket to heal. Thayer weaves together the lives of Marina, Jim, Abbie, Emma, and Lily along with glimpses into the brief life of Danielle Fox along with a diverse and lively group of people who either live on or are visiting Nantucket for the summer. Beachcombers is a novel that is easy to get wrapped up in and wish to be a part of the joys and sorrows that fill the lives of the characters. My favourite characters were Abbie and Marina for their strength and maturity and their ability to see beyond the superficial in young 22-year-old Lily. While I have never been to Nantucket I felt as though I could visualize every part of Nantucket through Thayer’s beautiful, detailed descriptions. Thayer has a way of making her characters and their surroundings spring to life. Beachcombers is a wonderful, life-affirming, witty, and deeply enjoyable novel. I would recommend Beachcombers to anyone looking for a charming, feel-good book this summer.
  • (5/5)
    Here is my recipe for the perfect summer book. Ingredients…At least one husband having an affair with his wife’s best friendA wife running off to a guest cottage in Nantucket because of her husband’s infidelityA dysfunctional trio of sisters who all have their own issues…including falling in love with a married man, getting dumped by a fiancée and losing a job and being the youngest in the family with no concern at all for other family membersAn island widower still trying to recover from his own issues and the death of his wifeDirections…Now toss all of these characters together, add some odd island old society characters, lots of angst and self doubt, a small theft or two, some blue fish, beach swims, bicycle rides and boat trips and you have a yummy novel that you will not be able to put down.Nancy Thayer does a lovely job of keeping all of these many characters moving throughout the course of one summer. The book is charming and a total delight to read. And helped me to arrive at my decision to head to Nantucket in the Fall.
  • (4/5)
    This was the first book I have read by Nancy Thayer. The chapters are short enough to read throughout a busy day. Set in Nantucket, the Fox sisters are each dealing with seperate issues and all come together one summer when middle sister Emma's engagement is called off and her job is lost. Their hardworking and protective father Jim, still tries to shelter his twenty-something girls from the hurt of their mother's questionable suicide when they were children. Enter Marina, a city gal, whose husband has left her for her best friend. She is taking up residence in the Fox's on-property Playhouse to regroup following her husband's infidelity.Each character is well-developed and attention is spread equally between them as well as Marina, as the chapters alternative between their third person omnicient points-of-view.
  • (4/5)
    This is a book about 3 sisters and their widowed father. Each of the sisters has their defined "role" within the family, and they are each trying to break out of the mold in some way. Then the father introduces the woman that he is interested in.... and it comes with mixed feelings and somewhat strong reactions from his daughters. I thought the book was an easy read, and you felt as if you really knew the characters. This will make an excellent beach read for anyone.
  • (4/5)
    Beachcombers is the story of three sisters who come back home to Nantucket for the summer. Lily - the youngest sister - emails Abbie - the oldest sister - to come home because she is concerned about Emma who is going through a nasty breakup as well as their father, Jim's financial issues. Jim rents out the girl's childhood playhouse to Marina who is recovering from a divorce. Their mother had formed the Beachcombers Club with them when they were children, teaching them to look for something more in the sand and in life. After she had died when the girls were young, Abbie tries to take over the role as mother as best she can. As adults, each of the women are in need of hope and healing, and the beautiful setting of Nantucket seems to be just the ticket. On their arrival back to Nantucket, the girls seem to fall back into their appointed roles as sisters. Nancy Thayer does an excellent job describing beautiful Nantucket - I could almost feel the sand between my toes. Lily drove me nuts! She enjoyed her role as a society reporter just a tad too much which made her come across as shallow to me. One of my favorite characters was Millicent Bracebridge, an elderly woman Emma was hired to read to every day. She was very wise and full of grand advice. I wouldn't mind spending an afternoon reading Agatha Christie to her, one of her favorites. I loved every minute I spent reading this novel. Each chapter is told from one of the women's perspectives but the story flows very nicely. I enjoyed the dynamics between the four women and the people they encounter over the summer. There were enough twists and turns to keep me reading. This book is a great summer read - not too demanding but quite enjoyable.
  • (4/5)
    Beachcombers By Nancy ThayerA summer (or beach) read where you can imagine yourself on Nantucket Island, a historic part of the Atlantic coast and the destination of thousands of vacationers.Beachcombers gives you not one, not two, not three, but four, yes four stories of summerLove as the three Fox sisters and their widowed father find romance arriving with the summer breeze. The girls are in the early 20’s to late 30’s - the elder two have recently been disappointed in life and love and when the younger sister asks them to help with their father’s “mid-life-crisis”, they are glad to return to the island where they grew up. I especially enjoyed the author’s depiction of Nantucket. I have never been there, but I live in a much smaller resort area in the Great Lakes, and I appreciate how she captures the heady “relax, we’re on vacation,” style of summer resort life.I found each character to be special, no problem mixing them up. Each has her unique experience and all is resolved in a happy and believable ending, after a few twists in the plot. This is for the casual reader, nothing profound, but a little vacation in itself from our ordinary daily lives.
  • (4/5)
    Beachcombers by Nancy ThayerPublished by Ballentine BooksISBN 978-0-345-51828-6At the request of Pump Up Your Book, an ARC was sent, at not cost to me, for my honest review. Synopsis (taken partially from book): Sisters reunite on Nantucket over a tumultuous summer of love and chaos. As the eldest daughter, Abbie took on a lot after her mother's death. Afterward, she feels she's earned the right to jet around the world, experiencing life, if not love. Her sister, Emma, a Boston stockbroker, seems to have it all...until the stock market crash leaves her jobless and her fiance dumps her. Remaining in Nantucket with their widowed father, Lily, the baby of the family, is full of dreams though she's not terribly helpful in a crisis. So when Marina, an enigmatic newcomer to town, begins wooing their successful, attractive father, Lily summons home her sisters. Reunited for the summer, the sisters start Nantucket Mermaids-a company providing an eclectic range of services for the island's wealty residents. Over the course of a busy summer, they work, gossip, and, of course, squabble. In the twilight of summer, all four women have changed--transformations that surprise themselves and each other. My Thoughts and Opinion: Nancy Thayer has created a story set in the picturesque and quaint island of Nantucket where four unique women have joined to heal from the pain of the past with the hope of the future. Eighteen years ago, shortly before the tragic death of Danielle Fox, mother to the very young Abbie, Emma and Lily, The Beachcombers Club was formed. Where the 4 Fox girls would walk the beach of Nantucket looking for treasures in the sand. Danielle taught them to always believe in something more and to look at what is right in front of them. Scars from that time are still present but is it time to heal? I was transported to this special place through the author's masterful descriptions to where the wealthy vacation and the native young try to leave. I became so engrossed in the lives of these four women that they became my friends throughout the entire read. I laughed when they laughed and cried when they cried. Beachcombers is the perfect summer read. My Rating: 4
  • (4/5)
    Emma Fox, who has just been dumped by her fiance and fired by her high powered brokerage firm, has fled back to the family home on Nantucket. Her younger sister Lily is so worried about Emma spending her days crying and sleeping that she e-mails their older sister Abbie to come home from London. That's not Lily's only worry; their dad has rented out the playhouse to a complete stranger who Lily thinks is after their dad. Marina, their new tenant, has come from the midwest and is on Nantucket to help herself heal after a heartbreaking divorce. She finds a lot more on Nantucket than just a small rental on the ocean. When Abbie arrives home, things go right back to the old pecking order. Lily is again the family baby and expects everyone to take care of her while she can just be her irresponsible self but over the course of the summer Lily is in for quite a few surprises from her two sisters,her dad and in the end herself. Beachcombersis a wonderful story of a family in flux who find themselves in some new and unexpected relationships. The story is told from the perspective of each of the four women changing with each chapter. I love the way Thayer managed to transport me mentally and emotionally to Nantucket and put me right in the scene with these well developed characters in such a delightful setting. The writing flows smoothly and the story kept me engrossed to the point that I hated to see it end. Another endearing book by Nancy Thayer perfect for a light summer read.
  • (4/5)
    Three sisters are brought together one summer at their childhood home on Nantucket Island. Abbie is the oldest and wisest; the mother of the family. Emma has just lost her job, her fiance, and is depressed. Lily is the youngest and is somewhat self-absorbed. Their father, Jim, is struggling financially with his construction business. The girls lost their mother at a young age, and their dad worries about how this has affected them. Marina, a recent divorcee, is renting their guesthouse and has troubles of her own. Emma and Abbie start a new business, Nantucket Mermaids, doing odd jobs around the island. All have issues and this seems to be the summer to figure it all out.I really enjoyed this story of three sisters. The characters are warm, real, and you end up wanting the very best for each of them. I loved the setting of Nantucket Island...from finding treasures with their mom in the Beachcombers Club to Surfside Beach. A lot happens with each character, but it is all interesting, fun, and it worked for me!
  • (4/5)
    Thayer once again takes us to a summer on Nantucket Island, this time embroiled in the lives of the three Fox sisters. Youngest sister Lily emails oldest sister Abbie to come home to help navigate the trials of middle sister Emma, who has lost her job and fiance in one swoop. The three girls fall somewhat predictably into their old family roles once they are together under one roof. The baby of the family, Lily, seems especially stymied by the presence of her older sisters. There is a fourth voice in the novel as well. Marina has just divorced and in re-evaluating her life, has rented the Fox "playhouse" for six months. The girls seems disturbed by their father's interest in this renter and the possibilty of his living his own life. The stories work together well, and there is some interesting Nantucket history included too. All in all, this was a good read to kick off summer.
  • (4/5)
    Beachcombers was my first beach read of the summer, and it really fit the bill perfectly. Abbie, Emma, and Lily were all well written characters, and their adventures over the summer in Nantucket made for interesting reading.I can’t say whether I sympathized with Abbie or Emma more. Abbie was the mothering figure, yet at the same time she was hesitant to become that once again for her family. It was important to her to live life on her own terms; she didn’t want her homecoming to mean that her sister Lily could stop taking on any sort of responsibility. On the other hand, Emma starts out the novel with no direction. Her life has come crashing down around her and she does not know where to turn. She has no reason to get out of bed each morning until Abbie gives her one. I can definitely say that Lily was the character I sympathized with least. On one hand, she was only twenty-two – she wanted to have fun, not take on responsibility, which is understandable at that age. On the other had, she was petty and selfish, which made her very difficult to like at times. Thayer did an excellent job developing her character though, making her grow up over the course of the novel and begin to understand that the world doesn’t revolve around her.This was a satisfying read, though things did tend to happen inexplicably quickly. Emma couldn’t get out of bed because of her depression, and a few pages later she’s running around the island. Abbie’s love interest in the novel also comes about quite suddenly. I can understand Thayer’s desire to keep the book moving at a brisk pace, but these jumps were a bit unrealistic.Still, Beachcombers was an enjoyable novel that is absolutely perfect for a summer read. These women are interesting characters and Thayer does a wonderful job making them seem like real people. If you’re looking for a good book for the beach, make sure you stick this one in your bag.
  • (4/5)
    Such a good book! There was no huge dramatic or tragic event, but there was just something about the characters that kept me wanting to get back to it. Each chapter was told by four different ladies, three sisters, and a recently divorced tenant living on their family property. This was just an enjoyable read, and my first one from this author, but it won't be the last. I'm looking forward to checking out her other novels, and if they're as good as this one, I know I won't be disappointed.
  • (3/5)
    A story of three sisters whose mother died when they were young. The oldest, Abbie raised Emma & Lilly. The book tells the story of their romances and heartbreaks and is a story of hope after loss. Abbie rushes home when Lilly calls saying Emma needs her. Emma lost her job & fiance and is crushed. Abbie gets the idea to start a company and they both meet the love of their lives through it. Meanwhile, their dad falls for the lady who rented the cottage who also was going through heartbreak & loss. A light "girly" read.
  • (3/5)
    This is a novel about three sisters and their father who have lived year-round on Nantucket thrroughout their lives. The ups and downs of their romances and employment encompass one summer in a lovely setting. What I liked was learning about the lore and lure of Nantucket by someone who obviously loves it. It is a very easy read with happily-ever-after resolutions that are no surprise, and would probably be a good beach read.