Title: The Vineyard
Author: Michael Hurley
Format: Paperback, 374 pages
Source: Received from TLC Book Tours in exchange for an honest review
From Michael Hurley, winner of the Chanticleer Reviews Grand Prize for his debut novel, THE PRODIGAL, comes a complex and ambitious tale of old money, young passion, and ancient mystery in a classic New England seaside town.
Dory Delano, Charlotte Harris, and Turner Graham have been drifting through life since their days as roommates at Smith College, ten years ago. Dory is resisting taking the reins of her family’s legacy and fortune even as she relishes the fabulous lifestyle it affords her in the fashionable seaside resort of Martha’s Vineyard. She invites her old friends to join her for a summer on the Vineyard in hopes of rediscovering the innocence of old days and healing new wounds. But hidden in their midst and unknown to all but a few, a reclusive—some say dangerous—fisherman wanders alone, fueling wild speculation about his purpose and his past. None of these women can imagine the events their encounter with the fisherman will set in motion, the shadow he will cast over their destinies, or the transformation that awaits the world they know.
About the Author
Michael Hurley and his wife Susan live near Charleston, South Carolina. Born in Baltimore, Michael studied English at the University of Maryland and law at St. Louis University. Michael’s first book, Letters from the Woods, was a collection of essays, self-published in 2005, based on wilderness canoeing expeditions with his children. It was selected as a finalist in the Nature category for ForeWord magazine’s Book of the Year award. In 2013 Hachette Book Group published his memoir, Once Upon A Gypsy Moon, under their Center Street imprint. The Prodigal is his first novel.
When I first read the back of this book I was expecting a book about three women who come together in the summer on the island of Martha’s Vineyard. Which it was. I also thought it was going to contain a lot of these rich women just b**ching about their lives and how terrible everything is in. I wanted to read it because I love to see how authors write about these sort of events. I was wrong with this part. This book did not contain rich women b**ching about their terrible lives/husbands/kids, it was a story about three women whose lives have not gone as planned and who needed each other to stay strong. It is about hope and faith, friendship and love. It tells the story of three college friends who come together one summer and meet a loner who changes their lives in some way.
Although I did like the characters and each one had their own personalities, I found that I didn’t have a connection to any of them. I liked the story, but wish that the characters were developed a bit more before the story had continued on. Charlotte is a devout Catholic whose marriage fell apart because of the death of their daughter. She has come to the island to end her life. Then there is Dory Delano. She comes from the richest and proudest family on the island. She is not married and does not have any kids. She seems to love the single life. The third woman is Turner Graham. Turner seems to be the black sheep of the group. She runs a blog that attracts a lot of attention (mostly from men).
The story lines was a good story and I thought that it was interesting that religion was interwoven into the story the way it was. The book touched upon belief and the also the lives of priests. I thought that the way religion and faith were discussed, and sometimes questioned, was wonderfully done. I am a Catholic, and although I am not a devout Catholic by any means, I don’t like when authors attack the religion (mind you I don’t like when authors attack ANY religion). I did not feel like the Catholic faith was attacked at all- which I liked.
I recommend this book to everyone out there. It was a really well written book with a great message.
Overall, I give this book:
4 out of 5 Hippos
Thank you to
for allowing me to participate in this tour!