Something in Stone by Linda Reid

I’m pleased to introduce you to six women: Chris, a bookkeeper, Abby, a local mayor, Nina, a psychiatrist, Rennie, the organizer, Morgan an actress and Annette, who is shrouded in mystery. All in their mid fifties, they’re drawn together after many years by a will that leaves them a beach house. No ordinary venue, this is the beach house of their youth, filled with memories from 35 years of pathos and ethos, which all comes tumbling out in the interaction of crisp, intense dialogue crafted by Reid. In addition to secrets, there are mysteries that maintain a background of tension to the last page of this novel.

The characters come alive in the first chapters and stay with you throughout the story, like a Thanksgiving family gathering. Reid manages to capture both the closeness and the separations of life-long friendship. Her fascinating plot line follows in the tradition of two notable films: The Return of the Secaucus Seven (1979) and The Big Chill (1983). Like the films, Reid is able in this novel to define relationships in terms of the transition from one age to another. She weaves the story of these six lives like a complex tapestry that includes anger, love and depression, but ultimately caring. I can recommend this book both as an enjoyable read and as a study in character development.

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