The Sarah Selects July Book Club Pick!
"As sophisticated and delicious as lobster bisque." -- Amanda Eyre Ward, New York Times bestselling author of The Lifeguards and The Jetsetters
Louisa has come to her parents’ house in Maine this summer with all three of her kids, a barely-written book, and a trunkful of resentment. Left behind in Brooklyn is her husband, who has promised that after this final round of fundraising at his startup he will once again pick up his share of the household responsibilities. Louisa is hoping that the crisp breeze off Penobscot Bay will blow away the irritation she is feeling with her life choices and replace it with enthusiasm for both her family and her work.
But all isn’t well in Maine. Louisa’s father, a retired judge and pillar of the community, is suffering from Alzheimer’s. Louisa’s mother is alternately pretending everything is fine and not pretending at all. And one of Louisa’s children happens upon a very confusing and heartfelt letter referring to something Louisa doesn’t think her father could possibly have done.
Louisa’s not the only one searching for something in Maine this summer. Kristie took the Greyhound bus from Pennsylvania with one small suitcase, $761, and a lot of baggage. She’s got a past she’s trying to outrun, a secret she’s trying to unpack, and a new boyfriend who’s so impossibly kind she can’t figure out what she did to deserve him. But she can’t keep her various lives from colliding forever.
As June turns to July turns to August, secrets will be unearthed, betrayals will come to light, and both Louisa and Kristie will ask themselves what they are owed and what they owe others. A delicious summer read and an exploration of family, responsibility, ambition and loss, Vacationland is Meg Mitchell Moore at her best.
Moore (The Islanders) follows a family's tribulations while summering in Maine in her delectable latest. NYU history professor Louisa McLean brings her three children to her parents' summer home in Rockland without her husband, Steven, who stays behind and continues putting in long hours in chasing his dream of selling his podcast company. Louisa, resentful at having to deal with the kids herself, also hopes the time away will help her stop procrastinating on writing her book. Tensions mount as her mother reveals that paying to care for Louisa's father, Martin, a judge who now has Alzheimer's, might require them to sell the family house as soon as the following year. Then a young woman named Kristie Turner arrives by Greyhound after her mother's death, determined for reasons that are only revealed later to gain an audience with Martin. She decides to stay a while, gets a job as a waitress, and worries about money after learning she's pregnant. Kristie's life is detailed in sharp contrast to Louisa's leisurely days, as Louisa weighs a desire to help Kristie with her parents' needs. Steven's lack of understanding over how much the house means to Louisa, meanwhile, causes tensions to flare. Moore details the dicey situation with nuance and grace. Readers are in for a treat.