• Summer House

  • A Novel
  • By: Nancy Thayer
  • Narrated by: Emily Durante
  • Length: 11 hrs and 34 mins
  • 4.2 out of 5 stars (179 ratings)

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Summer House  By  cover art

Summer House

By: Nancy Thayer
Narrated by: Emily Durante
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Publisher's Summary

After years of wandering from whim to whim, 30-year-old Charlotte Wheelwright seems to have at last found her niche. The free spirit enjoys running an organic gardening business on the island of Nantucket, thanks in large part to her spry grandmother Nona, who donated a portion of her land on the family's seaside compound to get Charlotte started. Though Charlotte's skill with plants is bringing her success, cultivating something deeper with people---particulary her handsome neighbor Coop---might be more of a challenge. Nona's generosity to Charlotte, secretly her favorite grandchild, doesn't sit well with the rest of the Wheelwright clan, however, as they worry that Charlotte may be positioning herself to inherit the entire estate. With summer upon them, everyone is making their annual pilgrimage to the homestead---some with hopes of thwarting Charlotte's dreams, others in anticipation of Nona's latest pronouncements at the annual family meeting, and still others with surprising news of their own. Charlotte's mother, Helen, a Wheelwright by marriage, brings a heavy heart. She once set aside her own ambitions to fit in with the Wheelwrights, but now she must confront a betrayal that threatens both her sense of place and her sense of self. As summer progresses, these three women---Charlotte, Nona, and Helen---come to terms with the decisons they have made. Revisiting the lives and loves that have crossed their paths and the possibilities of the the roads not taken, they may just discover that what they've always sought out was right in front of them all along.

©2009 Nancy Thayer (P)2011 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"Nancy Thayer has a deep and masterly understanding of love and friendship, of where the two complement and where they collide." (Elin Hilderbrand)

What listeners say about Summer House

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Performance
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Story
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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    24
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • MW
  • 05-07-15

Best Nancy Thayer book I've read

Just as much of a page turner as her others, but with more depth and heart. Great narrator. Highly enjoyable.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Superb read for anytime~great beach read~I loved i

What made the experience of listening to Summer House the most enjoyable?

I felt I was in the story and part of each character. The different voices make the book!!!

What did you like best about this story?

I liked everything about this book but Nona's personality; life with Herb; and her wisdom of knowing how to get the best result in her family was captivating!

What about Emily Durante’s performance did you like?

Emily was excellent through the entire book!!! She made it alive and "real"!!

Who was the most memorable character of Summer House and why?

Nona was my favorite filled with great wisdom and a calm voice that got more results than any other way! She was phenomenal! I also like Helen her role was excellent!

Any additional comments?

This book caught me from chapter one and I never lost interest in any part of the book. It's a great family story!!! A must read!!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Great read for the beach

What did you love best about Summer House?

I love Nancy's storys and her images of Nantucket. Her characters are always so memorable. There is always one character you love to hate in her books...this time it was Grace.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Summer House?

When the privot hedge was cut down....I was in shock.

Have you listened to any of Emily Durante???s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No, not familiar with Emily's work.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

??

Any additional comments?

The one thing I didn't like was the way the book ended. Just as I was warming up to everyone and wanted to see what the future held for them, it ended I didn't know what happened to Teddy or Charlotte. There needs to be a sequal!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Abrupt ending…

Was not expecting it but the ending was abrupt. Good story. I will listen to this again.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Narrator Voices

Nice story as all Nancy’s are, but the narrator using a variety of voices is very distracting.

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Performance ruins this one

This story may or may not be enjoyable. After two hours I could not get past the narrator- making Boston/New Englander’s sound like southern/dim/overly exaggerated folks made no sense. Stopped listening.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Large group of irritating people w bad accents

Remember Shirley Temple? That little moue her face assumed when she talked sass? Well imagine that voice, in adult form, right in your ear for over 10 hours. Ugh. Not quite accurate tho, that was just for the female characters. The men of the family- characterized as upper middle class Boston suits- sound like White Plains Street thugs. And everyone complains pretty much all the time I managed to slog through. When I noticed that my own face was pinched up in annoyance, I quit. This was supposed to be a nice beach read. I am actually at the beach, and annoyance is not in the plan. Good-bye!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

easy read

Not bad. Somewhat predictable. The story line is sweet and we'll balanced. I feel like I want to rent a house on the beach!