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Publisher's Summary

The sensational New York Times best seller The Mill River Recluse reminds us that friendship, family, and love can come from the most unexpected places. Perfect for fans of Maeve Binchy.

From the outside, Mill River looks like any sleepy little Vermont town where everyone knows everyone and people never need to lock their doors. There are newcomers for whom this appeals, from police officer Kyle Hansen and his daughter Rowen, who are starting over after heartache, to Claudia Simon, the schoolteacher who is determined to reinvent herself.

But on closer inspection, there are those in Mill River - including a stealthy arsonist, a covetous nurse, and a pilfering priest - who have things they wish to hide. None more than the widow Mary McAllister, who for the past 60 years has secluded herself in her marble mansion overlooking the town. Most of the residents have never even seen the peculiar woman. Only the priest, Father O’Brien, knows the deep secrets that keep Mary isolated - and that, once revealed, will forever change the community.

©2014 Darcie Chan (P)2014 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

"Chan's sweet novel displays her talent." (Kirkus Reviews)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Performance
  • Story
  • E
  • 06-23-14

Lovely story with great narration

Would you listen to The Mill River Recluse again? Why?

Yes. It is a lovely, sweet story.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Mill River Recluse?

There were several scenes between Mary and Father O'Brian, especially during Mary's illness that are extremely touching.

Which character – as performed by Amy Rubinate – was your favorite?

Claudia is my favorite character, even though she isn't the main character. Ms. Rubinate really captures Claudia.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

When Father O'Brian realizes that Mary is not going to be around much longer.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story

Good story. Bad language.

The story did keep my interest until the end, which is why I finished the book. However, it was a struggle to listen to the profane and bad language all the way through the book. It was not just the bad characters who used it but pretty much everyone, which detracted from the story. Having said that, there were many positive things about the storyline; focusing on giving and acceptance. I would rather that the author not have created the impression that crawling under the sheets with someone you just met is ok as long as you are a giving loving accepting person.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Stephen
  • WORCESTER, MA, United States
  • 12-20-15

Girl With Troubled Past Gets Old and Dies

What did you like best about The Mill River Recluse? What did you like least?

Best: Scenes of village life in Vermont<br/>Least: Not much substance

Was The Mill River Recluse worth the listening time?

Not for me. The story wanders around through decades of time, slowing developing the main character's past, but in the end you don;t get a clear sense of why you care about the main character.

Any additional comments?

This is meant as your basic "good feel" novel I suppose. Not really my kind of book<br/>

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Kelly
  • RIVERTON, WYOMING, United States
  • 10-07-15

Narrator is one of the worst I've ever heard.

Great story. Horrible narrator. Read the book yourself. You'll be much happier. I love audio books, but wished I'd read this myself.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Intriguing

Narration was well done. Great story. Kept my attention. Surprise twist near the end. Very much enjoyed it.

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  • Susan
  • Bartonville, TX
  • 04-07-16

Epic cozy

When a young woman living in a small community on her fathers farm, strikes the fancy of the local aire to a marble empire, he decides he must have her as his bride. She endured a misdeed at a young age that has left her with the inability to interact with almost anyone, so she is quite the challenge for this young man. He and his Grandfather finally get her to join their family and when her new husbands true spoiled nature comes out, all of her allusions melt away. He is abusive to her and their animals until one day after finding out he is to be drafted, tragedy strikes.

This story goes back and forth between the past and present which is done with finesse as it did not give me whiplash. A nice cozy with some brutal parts. Warning: there is torture to a horse, but it's not a big part of the story.

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thoroughly enjoyed this book

This was a great book . I never expected the twists at the end. I highly recommend to anyone who enjoys a solid story.

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Abuse, abuse, abuse

I had NO idea this was going to be about an abusive husband. I turned it off after the horse scene, a third of the way through. Neither of us could take it anymore. IF you want a depressing slice of life about an abusive relationship, rape, etc., then this is your novel. The writing was not bad, but they should revise the advertising.

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Author had problems with math

Any additional comments?

This was a sweet, enjoyable book, but there were some odd discrepancies which distracted from the story. The biggest problem I had was with the ages, the mother was 17 when her daughter was born but then they are about 50 years apart in ages at the end of the book. The author needs to spend more time in Rutland, Vermont if she is going to write in detail about the area, there were odd tidbits that didn't add up. I was not unhappy I spent my time listening to this book, but I don't feel the need to read another by this author.

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very slow

I had a hard time finishing this book. I kept hoping that it would get better. There wasn't much of a plot. The big surprise at the end was predictable. I won't be getting the next book in the series.