The Identicals

Little, Brown. Jun. 2017. 432p. ISBN 9780316375191. $28; ebk. ISBN 9780316375207. F
Tabitha and Harper are identical twins yet as different in nature as the rival Massachusetts islands they inhabit. But this wasn't always the case. After their parents divorced, and Tabitha stayed with their mother on Nantucket and Harper moved to Martha's Vineyard to live with their father, the siblings grew apart. Then Tabitha blamed Harper for the loss of her baby son and their relationship deteriorated even further. When their father dies unexpectedly and their mother is suddenly hospitalized, they end up working together out of desperation. Tabitha needs someone to care for her teenage daughter, and Harper's life is such a mess that she needs to leave town ASAP, so they essentially switch lives. The realization that each twin could benefit from becoming a bit more like the other is soon apparent but isn't enough to mend their relationship. That will take an even greater force.
VERDICT Engaging family relationships mixed with vivid landscape descriptions create an effortless read. For fans of Hilderbrand's other novels as well as other novels with a beach setting such as those by Nancy Thayer. [See Prepub Alert, 1/8/17.]
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