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Publisher's Summary

“The perfect summer read” (USA Today) begins with a shocking tragedy that results in three generations of the Adler family grappling with heartbreak, romance, and the weight of family secrets across the course of one summer.

“Rachel Beanland is a writer of uncommon wit and wisdom, with a sharp and empathetic eye for character. She’ll win you over in the most old fashioned of ways: She simply tells a hell of a story.” (Rebecca Makkai, Pulitzer Finalist for The Great Believers)

Atlantic City, 1934. Every summer, Esther and Joseph Adler rent their house out to vacationers escaping to “America’s Playground” and move into the small apartment above their bakery. Despite the cramped quarters, this is the apartment where they raised their two daughters, Fannie and Florence, and it always feels like home.

Now Florence has returned from college, determined to spend the summer training to swim the English Channel, and Fannie, pregnant again after recently losing a baby, is on bedrest for the duration of her pregnancy. After Joseph insists they take in a mysterious young woman whom he recently helped emigrate from Nazi Germany, the apartment is bursting at the seams.

Esther only wants to keep her daughters close and safe but some matters are beyond her control: there’s Fannie’s risky pregnancy - not to mention her always-scheming husband, Isaac - and the fact that the handsome heir of a hotel notorious for its anti-Semitic policies, seems to be in love with Florence.

When tragedy strikes, Esther makes the shocking decision to hide the truth - at least until Fannie’s baby is born - and pulls the family into an elaborate web of secret-keeping and lies, bringing long-buried tensions to the surface that reveal how quickly the act of protecting those we love can turn into betrayal.

Based on a true story and told in the vein of J. Courtney Sullivan’s Saints for All Occasions and Anita Diamant’s The Boston Girl, Beanland’s family saga is a breathtaking portrait of just how far we will go to in order to protect our loved ones and an uplifting portrayal of how the human spirit can endure - and even thrive - after tragedy. 

©2020 Rachel Beanland (P)2020 Simon & Schuster, Inc.

What listeners say about Florence Adler Swims Forever

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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I was grabbed up right away!

I enjoyed this story of family. Perhaps all families have difficult decisions within their histories. The right or wrong of any choice weighs heavy. I enjoyed the various character notations and voices of the narrators. May we all be remembered at our best!

27 people found this helpful

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Great story, multiple actors harder to follow

I really enjoy each of these narrators separately. Having so many actors with each doing multiple voices for each character was harder to follow for me.

25 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars

Good premise but incomplete

Good premise but too many questions were left unanswered at the end. The ending felt rushed.

17 people found this helpful

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I did not want it to end

Throughout the novel we are posed with a question. Will you lie? What damage will it do?
Each chapter is in the voice of the characters making up this important story so we are able to feel their perspective.
It is lovely. I did not want these people to leave my life.

17 people found this helpful

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I can’t wait to read Rachel Beanland’s second book!

I finished the book in one day. A very interesting story that make you think about marriage, family, death, secrets and much more. A must read!

14 people found this helpful

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  • 07-13-20

Enchanting.

You won’t be able to forget this story or its characters. Beanland’s deftly woven tale is rich with historical details and keen observations about human nature. I loved every moment.

13 people found this helpful

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Great read!

I can picture Florence Adler swimming forever in the memories of her family. This was a wonderful family story that captures the reader immediately. It is a book where you don’t want to stop reading until the very end.

12 people found this helpful

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Special story!

loved this book. Great production! Loved multiple voices. highly recommend this story as a break from politics.

10 people found this helpful

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captivating!

This story was captivating, with excellent character development! Loved that different readers were used for various characters.

10 people found this helpful

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Swim on Florence

Endearing characters, Florence will swim on forever in my heart. The authors note was such an important piece to this story.

10 people found this helpful