Publishing year: 2009
The start of this novel revolves around a tragic event.
Tess and Greg MacAvoy have died drowned as they were on their way to Martha’s Vineyard in their boat to celebrate their twelfth wedding anniversary. We see this event from the different perspectives of their friends, and we get to know the couple and the relationships within these eight friends.
The first one we meet is the Chief, whose name is Ed Kapenash, and who is in the police. The Chief, the name he is given other than Ed, is married to Andrea, who was Tess’s cousin. The Chief was very close to Martha and Greg, who he considered almost like a brother.
Then there is Addison Wheeler, married to Phoebe. We learn that Addison and Tess were having an affair. Tess and Greg had separated for a bit when she heard rumours about him and one of his students. I imagine that the affair started then, but later she returned to her husband, but it is clear that Addison thought that Tess would tell Greg that she loved Addison this weekend. Phoebe Wheeler, his wife, seems to be a woman who has emotional and mental problems, and I get the impression that she suffers from constant depression.
Another one in the group is Jeffrey, who is a farmer. He is married to Delilah, who works in a restaurant, and her way of life is very different to Jeffrey’s. Delilah likes clubbing and indulges in alcohol and pot. It is clear that Jeffrey and Delilah are not an ideal couple. We know that years ago Jeffrey dated Andrea and they even lived together. Yet, for some reason they broke up, and Andrea ended up marrying the Chief. From Jeffrey’s thoughts we know that he still has feelings for Andrea even if many years have passed since they were a couple.
The beginning of this new book is really intriguing, and in these few pages we have learnt a lot about the different characters. Now we will see how these two characters’ deaths will affect the others, and what consequences this terrible event will have. The first thing we know is that this couple leave two children orphans, a set of twins, seven-year-old Chloe and Finn, and now they are staying with Jeffrey and Delilah, who have two children of similar age. We can also guess that Tess’s death will leave Addison bereft, and I have the impression that this couple was key to keep the rest of the friends together, and I have the feeling with their deaths, things will never be the same for this group.