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Good Harbor by Anita Diamant
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Good Harbor (original 2001; edition 2003)

by Anita Diamant

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8672710,272 (3.2)37
Member:jhsiess
Title:Good Harbor
Authors:Anita Diamant
Info:Pan (2003), Paperback, 336 pages
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Good Harbor by Anita Diamant (2001)

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I had forgotten that I tried this one once and put it down because I found it boring. I am glad I picked it up again. Although the writing style lacks, it's mostly just kind of flat, it is a very good story. I would like for it to have been done by someone with a beautiful writing style. That would have made what is a good book into a great book. ( )
  shesinplainview | Dec 9, 2014 |
Good Harbor by Anita Diamant is the story of the friendship between two women living in Gloucester. One is a children's librarian who was recently diagnosed with cancer. The other is a freelance writer who has come to write a novel.

I read the book for a combination of the location and the basic character descriptions. I'm a librarian and would like to be a children's librarian. I also want to a writer and I've had fun doing Nanowrimo. I'm also a woman of similar age to these two protagonists.

At first, there's not much to this plot. It starts off as a quiet book with the librarian doing everything in her power to not obsess over her breast cancer, and the other one doing everything possible to procrastinate with her writing. And then just to force a cinematic second act, a random dude on the beach is introduced and of course, he becomes the other man. Because nothing says edgy women's fiction like an extra marital affair.

I could have let the affair thing go except that the "hot" sex scenes were just so silly and not in a good way. I ended up having to stop reading because I just couldn't take the book seriously any more. ( )
  pussreboots | Sep 12, 2014 |
OK as a beach book. Begins by introducing 2 women in alternating chapters.,They meet and develop a develop friendship over the summer, slowly building trust enough to confide some of the secrets in their lives which they can't share with their husbands. Kathleen is dealing with breast cancer and memory of the accidental death of one of her children who was disabled. Joyce is struggling with a young teen daughter, distant husband, and writer's block. By the end, I realize that part of the purpose of writing this story was as a chance for Diamant to "explore her relationship with her own daughter", as Kathleen suggests Joyce might do in her proposed novel. I have to say, I felt like retching every time Patrick said "Joycey"--that sounded like such a patronizing nickname. ( )
  juniperSun | Mar 14, 2014 |
Almost two decades separate Joyce Tabachnik and Kathleen Levine. Each of them is in need of friendship; Kathleen because she is being treated for breast cancer, Joyce because she is at odds with her husband, her teenaged daughter and, seemingly, her life choices. The two women meet by chance at synagogue and a the beginnings of a friendship form. Fostered by long walks on the beach at Good Harbor, by shared confidences and by mutual kindness, the friendship grows.

This book seemed to me to be a meditation on the power and importance of friendship among women more than a story. That does not detract from the ease and comfort of the reading experience. The women and their experiences ring mostly true and the growth of their friendship is written in a way that seems genuine. No instant intimacy here. Not surprisingly, the male characters, husbands, lovers and sons, stay mostly unformed and in the background. The book is only 250 pages long and can be read in a relaxed afternoon. ( )
  turtlesleap | May 10, 2013 |
Good chick-lit about two women who become close friends, despite their 17 year difference in age. This book was warm and made me want to curl up with an afghan and cup of coffee, despite reading it during the heat wave in PA in mid July. ( )
  LivelyLady | Jul 26, 2011 |
Showing 1-5 of 27 (next | show all)
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Kathleen lay on the massage table and looked up at the casement windows high above her.
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"Good Harbor" addresses cancer, religion, parenting, death, infidelity, and relationships.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0743225724, Paperback)

Given the breadth of Anita Diamant's bestselling biblical epic, The Red Tent, it seems natural that her second novel has a much closer focus. Set in the small Massachusetts fishing town of Gloucester, Good Harbor is a slow-paced study of female friendship. Here Diamant can luxuriate in the development of just two principal characters: 59-year-old Kathleen Levine, a children's librarian who is undergoing radiation therapy for breast cancer, and a 42-year-old romance novelist, Joyce Tabachnik, who has bought a summer retreat in Gloucester in the hope of finally writing a "serious" book. The two meet at temple after a service presided over by a newly hired female rabbi. (What joy it must have been for Diamant, who chronicled so much oppression of Hebrew women in The Red Tent, to casually include the presence of female clergy.) Kathleen has no real confidante aside from her husband, Buddy; Joyce is facing estrangement from both her business-minded husband, Frank, and her soccer-obsessed daughter, Nina. What the women are lacking, they find in each other. As their intimacy grows, Diamant sometimes tells us what we already know, breaking into a conversation, for example, to announce how well things are going ("They smiled at each other. They were going to be okay."). This is a moving story nonetheless--short on incident, but with carefully drawn characters and fluid, matter-of-fact prose. --Regina Marler

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:41:23 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Two women are brought together by a mutual love for books, humor and nature for a once in a lifetime friendship.

(summary from another edition)

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