Wednesday, September 18, 2013

The House on Oyster Creek

Finished The House on Oyster Creek by Heidi Jon Schmidt. This was one of my last buys from Borders before they closed forever. I don't know what took me so long to pick it up. It's a good, deep read with complex, original characters who really stick with you. It's also set on Cape Cod. An added bonus.

Charlotte is married to Henry, a much older, intellectual recluse, habitually holed up in their NYC apartment. He's grumpy, easily irritated, and so intensely immersed in his work that much of the stream of daily life passes by unnoticed by him. They have a four year old daughter who both confounds and charms Henry. Charlotte has grown used to their unconventional, lonely life together. When Henry's father dies and leaves him his house in Wellfleet, MA, Charlotte decides they should occupy the house and a new life, hopefully giving their daughter Fiona a more balanced childhood. In order to afford this new seaside existence they sell a portion of the land that comes with the house, unknowingly placing the local oystermen's livelihood in jeopardy. Most of the locals snub and ignore Charlotte as a transplant, a "washashore." Except for Daryl, an oysterman and builder who is trying to reconstruct his own life. Enter friendship, suspicion, sexual tension and a satisfyingly original plot. This was an excellent read.

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