Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Review: Beautiful Day by Elin Hilderbrand

Beautiful Day by Elin Hilderbrand
Reagan Arthur Books
June 2013
Format: Hardcover, 416 pages
Source: Library

A summer wedding stirs up trouble on both sides of the family in this new novel from bestselling author Elin Hilderbrand.

The Carmichaels and Grahams have gathered on Nantucket for a wedding. Plans are being made according to the wishes of the bride's late mother, who left behind The Notebook: specific instructions for every detail of her youngest daughter's future nuptials. Everything should be falling into place for the beautiful event--but in reality, things are far from perfect.

While the couple-to-be are quite happy, their loved ones find their own lives crumbling. In the days leading up to the wedding, love will be questioned, scandals will arise, and hearts will be broken and healed. Elin Hilderbrand takes readers on a touching journey in Beautiful Day--into the heart of marriage, what it means to be faithful, and how we choose to honor our commitments.

My thoughts: One of the things I look forward to the most each summer is the release of a new Elin Hilderbrand book. With each book, I find myself getting to take a vicarious trip to Nantucket through the characters. I've never been to Nantucket, but it's definitely on my bucket list!

Beautiful Day takes place the weekend of Jenna and Stuart's wedding. It is told from the different viewpoints of those involved in the wedding, although not too much from Jenna or Stuart themselves. A big part of the story revolves around 'The Notebook', notes and ideas for Jenna's wedding written by her mother before she died of cancer and realized she would not be around for her youngest daughter's wedding. 

It would have been nice to learn more of the bride and groom's perspectives but really, while it was their wedding, the story wasn't really theirs to tell. It was the bride's sister, Margot and the bride's father Doug, the groom's mother Ann telling the story. It seems like every marriage is on the brink of collapse from the groom's married, divorced, and remarried parents, to one of the newlywed bridesmaids, to father-of-the-bride Doug, who is currently in a loveless marriage, to maid of honor, and divorced, Margot, who we met in the short story prequel, The Surfing Lesson. While they are all excited for Jenna and Stuart to begin their new life together, they seem to be re-evaluating the state of their own marriages.

The book also had some short "outtakes" scattered throughout the book. Mostly, they were brief comments from the minor characters as well as a few from the major characters. I loved these insights just as much as I loved reading all the "advice" that Jenna's mother left for her in 'The Notebook.'

This was the perfect beach read and my only complaint is that I now I have to wait another year for a new Elin Hilderbrand book!

Do you have an author that you associate with a certain season like I do with Elin Hilderbrand and summer?


  1. Loved the post. Sounds like a great book!!

    1. It really was. Have you read anything by her?

  2. How nice to anticipate the release of a new book each summer!


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