A Summer Affair

A Summer Affair

3.6 156
by Elin Hilderbrand
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

Sheila Crispin Cook, mother of four young children and nationally renowned glassblower, bites off more than she can chew when she agrees to co-chair the Nantucket's Children Summer Gala. Sheila is asked to chair the benefit, in part, because she is the former high school sweetheart of rock star Max West. Max agrees to play the gala and it looks like smooth sailing

Overview

Sheila Crispin Cook, mother of four young children and nationally renowned glassblower, bites off more than she can chew when she agrees to co-chair the Nantucket's Children Summer Gala. Sheila is asked to chair the benefit, in part, because she is the former high school sweetheart of rock star Max West. Max agrees to play the gala and it looks like smooth sailing for Sheila-until she promises a "museum-quality" piece of glass for the auction, offers her best friend the catering job, goes nose-to-nose with her Manhattan socialite co-chair, and begins a "good-hearted" affair with the charity's Executive Director, Lockhart Dixon.
Hearts break and emotions are pushed to the limit in this riveting story of one woman's attempt to deal with loves past and present, family, business, and high-powered social pressures. Elin Hilderbrand's unique understanding of the joys and longings that animate women's lives will make this her newest summer bestseller.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Hilderbrand's seventh novel delves into the psyche of a guilt-ridden mother/artist who embarks on a self-destructive path. Nantucket glass artist Claire Danner Crispin has pieces in private collections and one in the Whitney, but is overwhelmed with the needs of her husband and four kids (she gave up full-time glassblowing to take care of the family). Her troubles worsen when Daphne, a friend she'd been drinking with, is severely injured in a drunken car wreck. Claire is convinced that Daphne's husband, Lockhart, holds her responsible, so she's surprised when he asks her to co-chair a charity gala and create a new piece of glass art for auction. The plot mushrooms as Claire and Lockhart begin an affair; Claire rethinks her priorities; a slew of gala-related complications arise; and Claire's ex-boyfriend turned rock star comes into play. Hilderbrand keeps a lot of balls in the air, and if she pays too much attention to event-planning minutiae, there are still enough conflicts to keep readers entertained. (July)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Kirkus Reviews
Nantucket artist ponders a tryst. An accomplished glassblower, Claire Danner Crispin set aside her work to raise her children. Indeed, for most of her life Claire has followed the rules and been a reliable friend, wife and mother. All that changes when she is asked to co-chair Nantucket's annual Summer Gala to benefit the children's programs on the island. Wealthy Lock Dixon personally asks Claire to contribute her time and talents. Claire says yes. Soon she finds herself in the arms of Lock, who offers relief from the monotony of her marriage and the demands of caring for four youngsters. It's fun to watch Claire give in to her desires. As the Gala nears, a threat of exposure looms. As an artist, Claire knows that creating something of value and beauty requires sacrifice, love and a strong will. The question is: Does Claire value her newfound passion more than her marriage? There are a few too many loose ends to make the novel fully satisfying: Hilderbrand (Barefoot, 2007, etc.) writes herself into a corner by introducing too many characters to track. But witnessing Claire's walk on the dark side is pure voyeuristic fun. A perfect summer cocktail of sex, sun and scandal.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780316080507
Publisher:
Little, Brown and Company
Publication date:
08/01/2010
Pages:
512
Sales rank:
67,150
Product dimensions:
4.10(w) x 6.70(h) x 1.20(d)

Videos

Meet the Author

Elin Hilderbrand lives on Nantucket with her husband and their three young children. She grew up in Collegeville, Pennsylvania, and traveled extensively before settling on Nantucket, which has been the setting for her six previous novels. Hilderbrand is a graduate of Johns Hopkins University and the graduate fiction workshop at the University of Iowa.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >

A Summer Affair 3.6 out of 5 based on 1 ratings. 156 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book doesn't have the breeziness of the previous novels, and I found the main character, Claire, unlikeable. She has it all-lives in a beautiful place, has a husband, four small kids, even a live-in au pair, and is a respected glass artist. She has an affair with a billionaire, give me a break, while also serving as chairperson for a summer gala which takes up so much of her time that her husband resents it. I skipped a large part of the book because I wasn't interested in the progress of the affair, and found that I didn't miss anything. The ending was unsatisfying, and I think Hilderbrand is asking too much of the reader to pity Claire and admire her. This is a ponderous beach book that has everything but the kitchen sink thrown in, and I was more interested in Siobhan, the less-fortunate sister-in-law, who had problems I could better relate to. I prefer it when Hilderbrand writes about realistic people who work to get what they want in life.
GailCooke More than 1 year ago
Take A Summer Affair to the beach and take it with a grain of salt. It's a tad difficult to believe how or why an intelligent, caring woman who has it all - good husband, four fine children, a career as an acclaimed artist - would risk throwing it all away for a summer spin in the sand? However, credulity can be easy to suspend when a narrative is filled with pretty people, dreamy scenes, and pulsing passion. So, forget the how's and why's if you've a mind to, and join the fray. Fray is precisely what it turns out to be when Claire Danner Crispin agrees to chair the Nantucket's Children summer Gala. Not only will she serve as chair but she'll also create an original art piece - a gorgeous glass chandelier. It's not that Claire doesn't already have her plate piled high with house, husband, and kids, as most everyone can see save for Claire. But we're told she suffers from an inability to say no or even not now. Billionaire Lockhart Dixon directs Nantucket's Children (why are these fellows always millionaires, billionaires or zillionaires?) Whatever the case he and Claire are soon having an affair. Lock's wife was involved in a tragic auto accident which left her mentally impaired. Problems? What else? Claire has husband problems, lover problems , best friend problems, and problems with her New York co-chair. How did a rational woman ever get herself into such a mess? One cannot help but wonder. The one thing this listener didn't wonder about is the reading by Tony Award nominee Isabel Keating. Her delightful performance makes a lighter than a cumulus cloud plot seem almost plausible. Once again star quality narration gives a boost to an unremarkable story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book has marvelous descriptions of Nantucket, of glassblowing, of mothers and children. HOWEVER, it also has negativrs that make me want to slam the book out the nearest open window. Hey, I love a good soap opera, but these unhealthy storylines just make me shudder. Why did these people get married, and I'm not just talking about the 2 Crispin families and the Dixons, but most of the people that inhabit this story. Lies and secrets are not the way to populate a story. You just can't get your own way when you break your promises or your vows. The priest was fully right in his declaration that it must stop before he assigned penance. And Claire and Locke aren't the only affair. Both Crispin brothers are in unhealthy affairs with teleivison and gambling. Claire's secretive glassblowing, Edward and getting even, the children's charity's treasurer, Locke's co-dependant relationship with his wife.... and then Max and his addictions. Is this a true description of a wealthy community? Who knows. It's a bit reminiscent of the sixties. All I know is that if I ever am given another Hildebrand book, I'd think twice before reading it.
tina1234 More than 1 year ago
I almost stopped reading after the first few chapters when I realized where the main character was headed. But by the 4th or 5th chapter I was sucked in like a high-powered vacuum and couldn't stop reading! More than anything, I enjoy Elin's writing style. She lead me through the ups and downs of the main character, even though I couldn't relate to her situation.
JCgirl 7 months ago
The story of a summer affair on Nantucket, but it is also about the most strange women on the island. The story centers around the Nantucket social event of the season. The conflicts of the year-rounders and the summer people. All the problems of a summer romance and everyday family life. I loved Elin Hilderbrand's novel because she put the setting of the story on Nantucket.
FrancescaFB More than 1 year ago
A SUMMER AFFAIR was an entertaining read Good characters, but an abrupt ending. There were too many unanswered questions; too many of the characters left just dangling there, without any resolution to their situations. I would have preferred a further wrap-up of their lives.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
One of my favorite Elin Hilderbrand books... as a woman in my mid-40s I for some reason found it very relatable, even though my life is nothing like anyone's in the book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I've never felt compelled to write a few midway into a book but this book is one of the best I've read in along time. The plot and all the drama really motivate you to keep on reading to see what happens next.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
After not being able to put the book down, I was extremely disappointed of how the book ended! It was a very bad ending. I wanted to read on what happened to characters. What happened to Siobhans husband? Did Jason ever find out? Lock, Daphne, Galvin, Isabella, etc. I hate when the book is good but the ending is quick.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Enjoyed it, the Island is still my favorite!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
LC112648LC More than 1 year ago
Normally like her books. Couldn't get into this one!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
After reading Barefoot, I had high hopes for this book. But the story was infuriating and I had a hard time finishing. Definitely NOT her best work.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I agree with the previous reviews. A woman with an ideal life has an affair with one man while her ex-boyfriend turned rock star is also in love with her. Not only is the book so far fetched it's ridiculous, the main character is so unlikable you wish she would run away mid-book so the remaining characters (that are more real) can have a chance at salvaging the story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago