NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • A seaside town helps one young woman reclaim the light after darkness in an uplifting novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Debbie Macomber.
“Romantic, warm, and a breeze to read—one of Macomber’s best.”—Kirkus Reviews
Annie Marlow has been through the worst. Rocked by tragedy, she heads to the one place that makes her happy: Oceanside in the Pacific Northwest, the destination of many family vacations when Annie was a teenager.
Once there, Annie begins to restore her broken spirit, thanks in part to the folks she meets: a local painter, Keaton, whose large frame is equal to his big heart—and who helps Annie fix up her rental cottage by the sea; Mellie, the reclusive, prickly landlord Annie is determined to befriend; and Britt, a teenager with a terrible secret. But it is Keaton to whom Annie feels most drawn. His quiet, peaceful nature offers her both comfort and reprieve from her grief, and the two begin to grow closer.
Then events threaten to undo the idyll Annie has come to enjoy. And when the opportunity of a lifetime lands in her lap, she is torn between the excitement of a new journey toward success and the safe and secure arms of the haven—and the man—she’s come to call home.
In this heartwarming tale, Annie finds that the surest way to fix what is damaged within is to help others rise above their pain and find a way to heal.
Praise for Cottage by the Sea
“Macomber never disappoints. Tears and laughter abound in this story of loss and healing that will wrap you up and pull you in; readers will finish it in one sitting.”—Library Journal (starred review)
“Macomber’s story of tragedy and triumph is emotionally engaging from the outset and ends with a satisfying conclusion. Readers will be most taken by the characters, particularly Annie, a heartwarming lead who bolsters the novel.”—Publishers Weekly
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Don’t let the beachy cover fool you; Cottage by the Sea explores some heavy themes, like survivor’s guilt and domestic abuse. After losing her entire family in a shocking accident, Annie Marlow accepts a job in Oceanside, Wash., the town where many of her favorite childhood memories were made. She finds a community badly in need of healing—especially gentle giant Seth Keaton, a man she can’t stop thinking about. Debbie Macomber’s sweet romance drives home the comforting idea that small acts of kindness and forgiveness can have huge ramifications.
Macomber's vivid standalone novel focuses on a tragedy that changes one woman's life. When Annie Marlow loses her parents, brother, sister-in-law, and niece in a mudslide in Washington State, the guilt and pain she feels is almost unbearable. After leaving her job as a physician assistant in L.A., Annie returns to Seattle to help settle her family's estate. Sixteen months later, Annie is still unable to move forward. Finally, she decides to move to Oceanside, the seaside town where she had vacationed with her family. Annie is hired by the town's clinic and meets Seth Keaton, a gentle giant of a man who is a talented artist. Seth convinces his friend Mellie to lease Annie her grandparents' cottage, fulfilling Annie's dream of returning. Annie becomes invested in Oceanside, helping the town's residents and embarking on a relationship with the kind, laconic Seth. When faced with the possibility of attending tuition-free medical school in Seattle, Annie must decide whether to leave Oceanside and Seth behind for the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Macomber's story of tragedy and triumph is emotionally engaging from the outset and ends with a satisfying conclusion. Readers will be most taken by the characters, particularly Annie, a heartwarming lead who bolsters the novel.
Customer ReviewsSee All
How in the world did this make it to print?
This book is one cliché after another. The denizens of Oceanside aren’t just troubled, they’re completely depraved (until our protagonist arrives and straightens them all out in a matter of months). Every character is two-dimensional and the narrative drags on and on without making you feel anything. The book is so insipid and uninteresting that I walked away, something I NEVER do. The most positive thing I take away from this experience is the conviction that any of us can write a best selling novel.
Beyond trite. Don’t waste your time.
This was one of the most inane and poorly written pieces of fiction I have ever read. The plot line is inane. The author repeated the same themes, barely altering the text, chapter after chapter.
Compelling & Emotional novel
Cottage by the Sea is the latest novel by Debbie Macomber. Thanksgiving is quickly approaching, and Annie Marlow’s mother wants her to come home to Seattle, Washington for the holiday. She is unable to change her schedule and Annie knows she will be home for Christmas. Annie regrets her decision when she receives a call from Aunt Sherry on Thanksgiving that the continual rains have caused her parents home to slide off the hillside. Annie has lost her entire family in one day. Sixteen months later, Annie has spiraled into intense depression and is suffering from survivor’s guilt. A counselor suggests Annie go somewhere that made her happy. She remembers family vacations in Oceanside and decides to visit. Annie feels at peace in the small town and decides to make a change. With the help of local painter, Seth Keaton, Annie is able to rent her family’s old vacation cottage and obtains a job. Annie wants to make a difference in people’s lives and starts with her curmudgeon of a landlord. In Oceanside, Annie finds a way to heal along with new friends and an unexpected romance. What happens, though, when Annie is presented with a wonderful opportunity?
Cottage by the Sea is an engaging and emotional novel. My attention was captured right away, and it was held until I finished the story. Annie is devastated when she loses her parents, brother, sister-in-law and niece all in one day. She feels guilty for not joining them for Thanksgiving and sinks into a deep depression. Grief is a terrible thing and it is something a person can understand unless they experience it themselves (unfortunately). Cottage by the Sea is not your typical romance novel. It is a story of healing. Be prepared for your emotions to go on a roller coaster ride while reading Cottage by the Sea (you will need a hanky nearby). There is love, heartbreak, joy, hope, grief, guilt, humor and despair. Debbie Macomber created realistic characters who have real world problems. I enjoyed the small-town setting in the Pacific Northwest and the various animals in the story. Mellie Johnson is Annie’s landlord whose past continues to haunt her. Annie decides to befriend Mellie and her collection of romance novels help get her foot in the door. The secondary characters along with their story are as captivating as the main characters. Cottage by the Sea is different from this author’s other works (in a good way) and it does not end as you would expect. I was left with an unanswered question at the end of Cottage by the Sea (which I find frustrating) and the pacing could have used work in the second half. My rating for Cottage by the Sea is 4 out of 5 stars. If you are looking for a compelling new novel to read, pick up Cottage by the Sea.