Here's To Us by Elin Hilderbrand
|Here's To Us by Elin Hilderbrand|
|Category: Women's Fiction|
|Reviewer: Zoe Morris|
|Summary: A super summer read, this is Hilderbrand's signature mix of intense island life and family drama with some delicious food mixed in|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 416||Date: June 2017|
|Publisher: Hodder Paperbacks|
|External links: Author's website|
Obituaries follow a pretty standard format, talking about how much someone meant to the loved ones in their lives – partner, children, wider friends and family. In Deacon's case, though, he's leaving behind not one wife but three, if you count the exes. And he has children across several decades. It's a true smorgasbord, as a chef might say. But yes, Deacon is dead and his family are gathering together, possibly for the first time ever in one place, to say good night to their sweet prince. That place is Nantucket where the chef kept a house, and where all the children (and all their mothers) have spent many happy summers over the years, albeit not in each others company.
Elin Hilderbrand writes wonderful books set on the island of Nantucket, with the one true amazing thing that the characters rarely overlap, despite the small size of the island. This book splits its time between there and New York, where Deacon was most recently living and where his daughter Angie worked with him at a top restaurant. As well as place, this book travels in time too. Most of it is set over a weekend, during which the wives and offspring travel from across the globe to their central meeting point in his old, beloved house on Hoicks Hollow Road, but we also have Intermezzo where we scoot into the past and into the lives Deacon had with Laurel, Belinda and Scarlett, how he met them, fell for them, felt his life change in different ways. After all, if one wife is a social worker, one a Hollywood star and one your former nanny, it's safe to say none of his marriages were all that similar.
This book builds such a clear picture of Deacon even though he is living for only a smattering of pages. His legacy, and his culinary prowess, will live on, that much is clear. He was not an old man when he died, but he started young and was therefore old enough to have two grown kids, so in an unusual but delightful way we had chapters narrated by wives but also chapters showing Hayes and Angie's perspectives. There is an awful lot going on in this family, and we need to hear from all sides if we're going to figure it out.
I enjoyed this book from start to finish. It's a family saga, a family drama, but with small secrets and lies, more than real mysteries to solve. For the reader it's a hello and we join the family in their good byes, and much like people would say about Deacon, it was so good to meet them, even if it felt we didn't have long enough with them.
Thanks go to the publishers for sending us a copy to review. I was sad when it ended, and it stayed with me long after the final page.
If you like the strong food theme that comes through in this book, you might also enjoy The Food of Love by Anthony Capella
You can read more book reviews or buy Here's To Us by Elin Hilderbrand at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy Here's To Us by Elin Hilderbrand at Amazon.com.
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