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Island Apart by Steven Raichlen

Island Apart

by Steven Raichlen

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This is another of the books that remained on my wish list forever, then I had an extra coupon so in the cart it went. I'm always glad that these books that turn out so good have proven to surprise me… why didn't I read this two years ago! Well, it's all about Martha's Vineyard, a place I visit because I'm lucky enough to have a friend who has a house there and what a wonderful history filled, food filled read this was. ( )
  mchwest | Jun 16, 2014 |
The food descriptions in this novel are lush and exciting, and I would love to eat each and every one of them! Even the doctored-up oat bran insisted upon by a food faddist sounds tasty.

The rest of the novel was not as good. The characters are flat at best, and the plot melodramatic and very coincidence-driven, rather than feeling like it emanates naturally from the characters in the set-up. I also very much dislike the trope where one of the people in a romantic relationship does all the changing to meet the other, and it's not reciprocated. I don't like it when the woman does all the changing for the man, and I don't like it the other way, either.

Still, it's a fast read, and worth it for the food descriptions if one is into that sort of thing! ( )
  cissa | Apr 13, 2014 |
ISLAND APART by Steven Raichlen
ISBN: 9780765332387
Story of Ed and Claire. He lives on the island and everything he eats and uses is from the island. Nobody knows much about him as the tale goes on so he's known as the hermit.
Claire and her friend are summering at Sheilas house when Claire informs her that divorce from her husband and police charges against him make her not want to go back to NY. It's agreed she will stay on into the fall months to catch up on her reading for her publishing job and travel to Boston for chemo when needed.
Brings back memories of what it's like to live on the island where I grew up. Summer months and the island growing to 5times the population. Love the winter months the most where you get to learn about your neighbors and you barter with one another.
Love to hear of the history lesson as to the first inhabitants to the island.
The hermit travels the island on foot and we discover all the hidden treasures.
He found her on the beach knocked out after a bike accident and carried her miles to the ferry where ambulance was called. After she was better she would make food for him, breads, pies, etc and leave them just past the cemetery, he would arrive and get them and return the empty sack to her mailbox at the post office.
The ingredients used to make their lavish gifts came from the island where they probably were just a few feet from one another as they foraged for the fruits or nuts to make flour. Cooking and combination of what goes into a dish is just outstanding!
What Claire does is what I'd want to do, live on the island year round and read. And add in that Mary knits, I'd like to do that also. And being that it's on an island the smell of the ocean would be super.
Tender sex scenes are very loving and passionate. Like how they spend time investigating the island by car.
They each have secrets and the other finds out in time...
Medical and other studies cited are like a mystery solved.
Love and mysteries, nature scenes and island living got to me, priceless. ( )
  jbarr5 | Jul 25, 2013 |
ISLAND APART has been on my wish list since last year, and when I saw the audiobook at the library, I snatched it up. The cover screams “light beach read,” but I was thrilled to discover that it went much deeper. Colorful characters, a magnificent setting, and an unusual love story made this book a memorable read. Oh, and the food! I can’t forget the delectable descriptions of dishes that kept me drooling page after page.

Claire is a likable character and easy to sympathize with. She’s a smart, strong woman going through a very rough time in her life. She’s just divorced a deadbeat, cheating husband, she has a strained relationship with her college-age daughter, and she’s battling a serious illness. Claire’s closest friends offer her the use of their summer home on gorgeous Chappaquiddick Island while she recovers. Who would say no to that? Not me!

Not long after moving in, Claire meets a strange, reclusive man known as the Hermit. The way they met and how their relationship developed was so unique! (Here’s where all that scrumptious food comes in, but that’s all I’m going to say.) The Hermit has a tragic past of his own, which caused him to withdraw from society, that is until Claire comes into his life. When Claire discovers his secret, their fragile new relationship is threatened.

I enjoyed how the author wove the history and local lore of Chappaquiddick into the story, from the colonial days, to the tragedy on the bridge in 1969, through the island today. I consider myself an armchair traveler, and the rich descriptions of this place made me feel like a local.

ISLAND APART is a bittersweet tale I won’t soon forget. I got misty-eyed a few times, especially at the end. No man is an island…

I listened to the audiobook, narrated by Susan Boyce. I enjoyed her performance. She captured Claire’s persona beautifully, and her male voices were good too. ( )
  bookofsecrets | Jul 23, 2013 |
With no disrespect to either author, Island Apart could easily have been mistaken for a Nicholas Sparks novel but with one major difference. Raichlen very skillfully weaves stories of the history and lore of Chappaquiddick Island (yes, that Chappaquiddick) in Martha's Vineyard along with absolutely mouth watering descriptions of food, both procuring and preparing, into this story of a survivor of life woman and a lost recluse of a man. This was an "it caught my eye" library find, and I'm happy that the serendipitous reading fairy waved her wand when I passed by the new fiction shelf. ( )
  owlsfeathers | Jul 29, 2012 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0765332388, Hardcover)

From the celebrated author of Planet Barbecue and How to Grill comes a surprising story of love, loss, redemption, and really good food.  
Claire Doheney, recovering from a serious illness, agrees to house-sit in an oceanfront mansion on Chappaquiddick island in Martha’s Vineyard. The New York book editor hopes to find solace, strength, and sufficient calm to finish her biography of the iconoclastic psychotherapist, Wilhelm Reich.

The last thing she expects to find is love.  

Then she meets a mysterious man the locals call the Hermit. No one knows his real name or where he lives. To their mutual surprise, Claire and the stranger discover that they share a passion for cooking that soon sparks something more.

But Claire’s new friend has a terrible secret that threatens to drive them apart forever. The clock is ticking. Can Claire let love into her life once more before it's too late?

Told by a New York Times bestselling author and international TV host with a keen eye for Chappaquiddick's extraordinary natural beauty, Island Apart has it all—romance, history, travel, crime, lovemaking of exquisite intensity, and cooking scenes so vivid, they'll make your taste buds ache with hunger. Steven Raichlen's novel is a smart love story—not to mention a terrific beach read. Think The Bridges of Madison County with better food.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:11:36 -0400)

Seeking to convalesce from a serious illness and finish a literary project, New York book editor Claire Doheney house-sits an oceanfront mansion on Chappaquiddick Island, where she falls in love with a mysterious loner who harbors a devastating secret.… (more)

» see all 2 descriptions

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