The Matchmaker [NOOK Book]

Overview

A touching new novel from bestselling author Elin Hilderbrand in which a woman sets out to find love for those closest to her - before it's too late.

48-year-old Nantucketer Dabney Kimball Beech has always had a gift for matchmaking. Some call her ability mystical, while others - like her husband, celebrated economist John Boxmiller Beech, and her daughter, Agnes, who is clearly engaged to the wrong man - call it meddlesome, but there's no ...
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The Matchmaker

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Overview

A touching new novel from bestselling author Elin Hilderbrand in which a woman sets out to find love for those closest to her - before it's too late.

48-year-old Nantucketer Dabney Kimball Beech has always had a gift for matchmaking. Some call her ability mystical, while others - like her husband, celebrated economist John Boxmiller Beech, and her daughter, Agnes, who is clearly engaged to the wrong man - call it meddlesome, but there's no arguing with her results: With 42 happy couples to her credit and all of them still together, Dabney has never been wrong about romance.

Never, that is, except in the case of herself and Clendenin Hughes, the green-eyed boy who took her heart with him long ago when he left the island to pursue his dream of becoming a journalist. Now, after spending 27 years on the other side of the world, Clen is back on Nantucket, and Dabney has never felt so confused, or so alive.

But when tragedy threatens her own second chance, Dabney must face the choices she's made and share painful secrets with her family. Determined to make use of her gift before it's too late, she sets out to find perfect matches for those she loves most. The Matchmaker is a heartbreaking story about losing and finding love, even as you're running out of time.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
05/19/2014
Hilderbrand's (Barefoot) charming, poignant 13th novel chronicles what happens after a woman's true love returns to her 27 years after they've agreed to no longer be in touch. Born with the ability to discern whether a couple is a perfect match or doomed to fail, Nantucket girl Dabney Kimball Beech knew from the moment she met high-school sweetheart Clendenin Hughes that they were meant for each other. Sadly, ambitious Clen was also destined to have a case of wanderlust that would lead him to a reporter job on the other side of the world. Pregnant with his child but terrified of leaving the island after a childhood trauma involving her resentful mother, Dabney tells a reluctant Clen that she needs a clean break. When Clen shows up in Nantucket, Dabney is plagued by ominous spells of pain and weakness that she attributes to being lovesick. Now the mother to a grown woman named Agnes, Dabney can see that her daughter's fiancé, C.J., despite being generous and charming, is also a controlling and ill-tempered poisonous match. Dabney's sweet husband, Box, seems to like him, but Box, a famous economist, is generally oblivious. Often away in Cambridge tending to teaching duties at Harvard, he hasn't had a physical relationship with Dabney in a while. Dabney begins a bittersweet affair with Clen while trying to urge her daughter away from C.J. Agnes, home for the summer, teams up with pal (and potential match) Riley Alsopp to get to the bottom of things after noticing her mother's suspicious absences. Hilderbrand's narrative is thoroughly readable, with likable heroes and believably despicable antagonists. One misstep is the downer ending; though you see it coming, it still feels like it belongs in another book. Despite this, Hilderbrand's story is an engaging read. (June)
From the Publisher
"Hilderbrand's surprisingly original take on the wedding disaster novel...A wedding readers won't be able to resist crashing."—Kirkus Reviews

"Hilderbrand's latest is the perfect beach read....[her] straightforward style pulls the reader into the minds of her characters, and all the secrets and sorrows that create the universal messiness of major family events."—Publishers Weekly

PRAISE FOR SUMMERLAND:

"Summerland is as readable as any beach book, but with a much bigger heart."—Boston Globe

"The Queen of the Summer Novel...Hilderbrand blends real-life issues - depression, teen alcoholism, bullying - with her signature soapy twists and illicit romances."—Joanna Powell, People

"Hilderbrand has once again written an engaging story wonderfully illustrating the often complex lives of young people struggling toward adulthood."—Booklist

"A sensitive glimpse into the lives of damaged people groping their way toward healing."—Kirkus Reviews

Booklist
"Hilderbrand has once again written an engaging story wonderfully illustrating the often complex lives of young people struggling toward adulthood."
Boston Globe
PRAISE FOR SUMMERLAND:

"Summerland is as readable as any beach book, but with a much bigger heart."

Joanna Powell
"The Queen of the Summer Novel...Hilderbrand blends real-life issues - depression, teen alcoholism, bullying - with her signature soapy twists and illicit romances."
Kirkus Reviews
2014-05-07
Hilderbrand's latest Nantucket heroine has a very particular kind of clairvoyance: She can always tell whether a couple is compatible or not.Dabney Kimball Beech, 49, who heads up Nantucket's Chamber of Commerce, is known for her headband, pearls, penny loafers and other preppy accoutrements, as well as her fabulous menus for tailgates and picnics. Then there's her track record of spotting perfect matches: If a couple is suited, she sees pink around them; if not, green. So far, her unerring intuition, augmented by artful introductions, has resulted in more than 40 long-term Nantucket marriages. As the wife of John Boxmiller Beech, aka Box, a Harvard economics professor who's frequently summoned to the Oval Office and whose benchmark textbook nets about $3 million a year, Dabney's domestic life is serene—except that she's never gotten over her high school sweetheart, Clendenin "Clen" Hughes, a Pulitzer-winning journalist whose beat has been, until recently, Southeast Asia. Due to a childhood trauma involving a runaway mother, Dabney has been too phobic to leave Nantucket (except for four years at Harvard). Nearly three decades before, unable to follow in Clen's globe-trotting footsteps, Dabney banished him from her life and from the life of their daughter, Agnes, who's never met her father, though she knows who he is. Now Clen is back on Nantucket—minus an arm. Agnes is engaged to the uber-rich, controlling and decidedly unclassy sports agent CJ. (This couple is definitely swathed in a green cloud.) Since Box is teaching in Cambridge during the week, the opportunity to resume an affair with Clen proves irresistible to Dabney. The complications mount until, suddenly, Hilderbrand's essentially sunny setup, bolstered by many summer parties and picnics (and lavishly described meals, particularly seafood), takes a sudden, somber turn. Hilderbrand has a way of transcending the formulaic and tapping directly into the emotional jugular. Class is often an undercurrent in her work, but in this comedy of manners-turned-cautionary tale, luck establishes its own dubious meritocracy.Beach reading with an unsettling edge.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780316329026
  • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
  • Publication date: 6/10/2014
  • Sold by: Hachette Digital, Inc.
  • Format: eBook
  • Sales rank: 1,401
  • File size: 751 KB

Meet the Author

Elin Hilderbrand
Elin Hilderbrand does her best writing on the beaches of Nantucket, as well as on the charming streets of Beacon Hill in Boston. She has three magical children who beg her not to sing along to the radio or dance in public. The Matchmaker is her 13th novel.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 58 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(32)

4 Star

(14)

3 Star

(6)

2 Star

(5)

1 Star

(1)

Your Rating:

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 58 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 15, 2014

    Another great beach read!!!

    Evrry time I read Elin Hilderbrand I feel like I am in Nantucket! I practically have my vacation planned!! As always, emotions run the gamut from happy, hopeful, surpirsed, sad, and heartbroken and back again. I feel like I know these characters personally! Whew...now I have to wait another year...

    5 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 30, 2014

    I Also Recommend:

    Another winner read it in two days .When I first started this bo

    Another winner read it in two days .When I first started this book I said wow I don't know if I am going to like it ... Well I was wrong. After the wonderful in depth character development it became a page turner. Dabney was OCD in so many ways, but she loved her daughter, Box in her way, but she was in love with Clen and Nantucket. A book about life's choices and how in one moment a choice can set the course of your life. I know many wouldn't change anything, I know I wouldn't . But how many would? Thank you Elin, already waiting for your next one. I highly recommend this one.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 12, 2014

    What a marvelous read!

    I was excited to get this on the first day available and the characters did not let me go! I have read most of this author's novels during my summer reading breaks from school. Dabney, Agnes, Box, Clen, and each person you meet will grab your heart and carry you along. Dabney has the ability to "see colors" of love around two people and you soon learn, she's always right!

    4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 24, 2014

    Loved, loved, loved!!! Finished it in just over a day. After bar

    Loved, loved, loved!!! Finished it in just over a day. After barefoot, this is my favorite. The characters are in true hilderbrand fashion flawed but beloved. I'm so excited about this book. I was disappointed with her last book, beautiful day, that I was admittedly a bit nervous. However, she rallied back to her normal style that I truly treasure. Thank you, thank you, thank you Elin for such a wonderful novel. I know she's known for summer reads but this is the best novel I've read in quite awhile. 
    Her normal heir of mystery is evident but not distracting. Characters are interesting and wonderfully intertwined. Do yourself a favor and treat yourself to this phenomenal, very real novel that pulls at your heart from start to finish.

    If you loved this book, and Elins writings, please share any and all recommendations me. I tried Jane green, not for me. Thanks;)

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 21, 2014

    Love!

    Perfect summer read! Didnt want to put it down!

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 17, 2014

    I met the author at a book signing for the Matchmaker at Warwick

    I met the author at a book signing for the Matchmaker at Warwick's BooksLala Jolla, CA, in April. She read us the first 12 pages of the book. She became tearful when describing that the story had a sad ending. I had no idea how it would end. I cried tears that I have not cried in years after finishing this book. It was wonderful, bittersweet. Have read every one of her books.  When asked which book was her favorite, she said The Blue Bistro. I have read this one twice. The Matchmaker was an amazing story, most emotional of all her books yet and most touching. Elin is very bubbly, engaging, effervescent, just like you would picture her characters to be. 

    2 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 14, 2014

    The Matchmaker

    I have been waiting for this book to come out for awhile. I have read all of Elin's books and this one was not a disappointment? I didnt want this book to end. Maybe she will write a follow up book about the characters. I would love to see what happens to them. Wonderful read!!

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 13, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Love Lost Drama!

    Elin’s Hilderbrand’s latest novel, The Matchmaker is a story of a forty-eight year old Dabney who grew up on the island of Nantucket with her family. Married to John, a famous professor at Harvard with a daughter, Agnes. Dabney possess match making skills and has a pretty high success rate.

    When Dabney finds out she has pancreatic cancer, and her high school sweetheart, Clendenin, a journalist returns to the island (learned about this relationship from her novella –The Tailgate) which was not a bad read. However, I am finding Elin’s novellas are better than the actual novel).

    In The Tailgate, we learn Dabney was seeing a therapist every week to discuss her issue of agoraphobia. After eight years of therapy, she found she could not be fixed; however her therapist helped her manage it. Nantucket was her oxygen. It was the only place she felt safe, healthy, whole.

    Dabney and Clen fell in love years ago; however, he was offered a job he could not refuse and Dabney chose not to go with him, remaining on her beloved Nantucket because of fear. She was raising Agnes as a single parent until the older professor and he adopted her. Now twenty years later, and her current illness causes her to second guess her life.

    Unfortunately, cannot recommend this book as could not wait for it to be over (listened to the audiobook), as most of the book involved the main character, complaining about things which were of no importance. I have read all Hilderbrand’s books and enjoyed her earlier ones in years past; however, the last few have been lacking substance.

    2 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 5, 2014

    Great summer read!  I always enjoy reading a Hilderbrand book.  

    Great summer read!  I always enjoy reading a Hilderbrand book.  Her characters are always well written, and one feels like they really know them

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 4, 2014

    highly recommended MUST READ IT

    ANother great book from Elin Hilderbrand I read her new books as soon as they come out never a disappointment MUST READ

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 26, 2014

    Love the stories she comes up with, great read as usual.

    Love the stories she comes up with, great read as usual.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 23, 2014

    Disappointing

    A good choice for those who like to get emotionally involved in a book. However, I found this rather melodramatic. There were certainly no surprises. Don't thnk I would read this author again. This genre just isn't my cup of tea, but I'm sure she has many loyal readers.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 15, 2014

    Ok book

    Beginning was a bit slow. I liked the characters but was disappointed with the ending.

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  • Posted September 5, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Reviewed by Anne Boling for Readers' Favorite This is a review

    Reviewed by Anne Boling for Readers' Favorite

    This is a review of the audio version of The Matchmaker written by Elin Hilderbrand and read by Erin Bennett. This is the story of Dabney Kimball Beech, matchmaker extraordinaire. She had 42 'something good' matches to her credit. While her husband Box and her daughter Agnes considered it nonsense, many others swore by her expertise. Dabney sees a aura of rose when the couple should be together, but around an imperfect couple she sees green. Dabney and Box were not a perfect couple; they had been together for twenty-seven years and the spice had gone out of their marriage. Dabney refuses to leave Nantucket and Box seems to be traveling all the time. Then Clendenin Hughes comes back into her world. She has loved him for years. Is it too late to renew their love? 

    Warning: before reading this book place a box of tissues next to your chair. That’s right. The Matchmaker by Elin Hilderbrand is a tear jerker. First, let me state that I was disappointed in the actions of Dabney and Clendenin. While I definitely wanted them to be reunited in love, I was disappointed that they resorted to an affair. On the other hand, I did not like Dabney’s husband, Box. He was self-absorbed and neglectful of his wife. Dabney as a matchmaker was eccentric and humorous. I found myself crying more than once. Elin Hilderbrand is one of my all-time favorite authors and I look forward to her next book.

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  • Posted August 26, 2014

    I doubt Ms Hilderbrand could write a truly bad beach book, but I

    I doubt Ms Hilderbrand could write a truly bad beach book, but I wasn't blown away by this one.  It almost seemed the main character
    was being punished for making the choices she did in life--she could only have true happiness for a moment before she dies.  I didn't
    really enjoy it that much.  The foreboding was evident from the start.  There was nothing particularly wrong with it--I just didn't enjoy it much.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 23, 2014

    Another Great Book...

    Wish she was able to clone her books and write more:)
    Love this author and her books

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 7, 2014

    predictable

    Could have been really good - too predictable - didn't need to finish when i got half way thru - already knew what was going to happen then for some reason the writer drags it on and takes tooooo long to actually tell you what happens - i finished it but was bored

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 27, 2014

    Classic Hilderbrand

    Another good summer beach read by Elin Hilderbrand. Engaging and hard to put down. Great book to sit back and enjoy on the beach.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 26, 2014

    Could not put it down

    So good--my favorite of all her novels to date.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 22, 2014

    Highly recommend it !

    I have read all of Elin's books and this is one of my favorites. I enjoyed the mini stories of matchmaking as well as much as the main story. I found it very touching and couldn't help but cry in parts, and laugh in others.

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