Publish Date: June 19, 2018
“Marriage is like a public toilet. Those waiting outside are desperate to get in and those inside are desperate to come out.” – Anonymous
It’s Nantucket wedding season, also known as summer-the sight of a bride racing down Main Street is as common as the sun setting at Madaket Beach. The Otis-Winbury wedding promises to be an event to remember: the groom’s wealthy parents have spared no expense to host a lavish ceremony at their oceanfront estate.
But it’s going to be memorable for all the wrong reasons after tragedy strikes: a body is discovered in Nantucket Harbor just hours before the ceremony-and everyone in the wedding party is suddenly a suspect. As Chief of Police Ed Kapenash interviews the bride, the groom, the groom’s famous mystery-novelist mother, and even a member of his own family, he discovers that every wedding is a minefield-and no couple is perfect.
“A man in love is incomplete until he is married. Then he’s finished.” ― Zsa Zsa Gabor
This is my first Elin Hilderbrand book.
Reading this book is like taking a vacation on Nantucket. You can practically taste the wet, salty sea air, hear the waves breaking near the shore, run your toes through the sand, hear the seagulls squawking, and taste the first bite of a lobster roll, which is a heap of sweet lobster meat piled onto a soft, buttery hot dog bun. (Connecticut-style, of course.)
The story starts in the days before the most anticipated wedding of the year on the Nantucket social scene. Everything is ready – the flowers, the seating arrangement, the menu, the cake. I can envision Benji and Celeste’s wedding being spotlighted in Martha Stewart Weddings or Town & Country magazine. Who doesn’t love a beautiful, elegant, picture-perfect wedding, and all of the hopes and dreams that come with it?
The book has a diverse cast of characters, including the wedding party, the wedding guests, the wedding staff, and even the police. The story is told from almost all of the characters’ perspectives so that the reader gets to knew each one individually. Elin Hilderbrand develops these people so carefully that I had no trouble keeping them straight.
Each character has secrets. EVERY.SINGLE.ONE. And many secrets were unexpected and revealed eventually throughout the book which made it so fun. As Greer Windbury, the mother of the groom, best puts it: “We all have flaws we try to hide, darling. Secrets we try to keep. All of us.”
The title of the book is ironic, because there are many couples in this book and several relationships were highlighted and analyzed. Which couple is the title of the book referring to? It made me wonder.
I loved the mystery surrounding the deceased maid of honor. It was not written in police procedural and the book did not have a thriller vibe. But it elevated the story from typical chick-lit to a whodunit and gave it a different spin.
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This quote from the book sums it up: “There is no such thing as a perfect couple.”