St. Martin's. Jun. 2019. 400p. ISBN 9781250200112. $27.99; ebk. ISBN 9781250200129. F
OrangeReviewStarDEBUT Harrison's historical fiction debut transports readers to a Long Island resort in 1938, where high-society ladies, occasionally joined by their husbands, spend summer days socializing and gossiping, and main character Beatrice Bordeaux longs for more. While Bea deals with infertility, the untimely death of her brother, and her husband's aloofness, she and the wealthy women around her swan through the tail end of the Great Depression in glittering dresses and fancy hats. The rich New Yorkers play tennis and sip cocktails at their posh resort, but Bea explores the nearby fishing village and befriends several year-round residents who barely make ends meet as laundresses and lobster fishermen. As she ventures further from the beau monde, she falls in love and works to find her place in the world around her.
VERDICT Full of substance and delightful characters with intriguing and intricate lives, Harrison's first novel will be a strong pick for fans of historical fiction featuring strong female leads, such as Kate Alcott's A Touch of Stardust and Jacqueline Winspear's popular "Maisie Dobbs" series.
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