Genre: Women's fiction
Nan is in her sixties and is still enjoying life to its fullest. She lives in a majestic and beautiful house by the beach, but is feeling lonely since her husband committed suicide years ago. Nan decides to rent out some rooms in her home, and is enjoying the company. The house soon fills up with troubled yet loving people, as they help one another over their obstacles and discover where their place in the world truly is.The Beach House is one of the touching yet midly depressing books about infidelity, depression, and healing. I was drawn to the cover when I saw it in the library and decided to try it out! Overall, it was relatively enjoyable, although I couldn't relate to the characters to my satisfaction.
One thing I really liked about this book was how these seemingly unrelated people, each struggling with their own internal issues (from cheating to having an unwanted child to sexual orientations), are perfectly tied together. For the majority of the story, we follow Nan and three other groups of people as they live their lives and attempt to overcome their problems. But somehow, at the end, these people are woven together and are each affected by this one big surprise. For this reason I always felt engaged and entertained while reading. It's evident that Jane Green is a skilled author - I'll be on the lookout for some of her other work!
As I mentioned before, I couldn't connect with any characters like I would have hoped. I soon discovered that this book is aimed more towards the middle-aged woman who is trying to come to terms with what she has accomplished and what she wants her life to be. Since I am far from that point in my life, this book entertained me rather than helped me.
As a whole, The Beach House is a fun yet (sometimes) heavy book to read. Most of the characters are going through a dark and depressing time in their lives, and the book certainly seems to focus on that. But once you make it to the end, Jane Green switches from sad to inspirational. Everything works out!
Recommendation: I don't think many young teens would enjoy this, but I can see older readers picking this book up. It's a mature novel, but The Beach House is usually fun and engaging.