The Summer House
When Flossy Merrill summons her children to the beloved family beach house to celebrate their father’s eightieth birthday, both cherished memories and long-kept secrets come to light in this charming and lyrical novel from the author of The Lake Season and Mystic Summer. Flossy Merrill has managed to—somewhat begrudgingly—gather her three ungrateful grown children from their dysfunctional lives for a summer reunion at the family’s Rhode Island beach house. Clementine, her youngest child and a young mother of two small children, has caused Flossy the most worry after enduring a tragically life-altering year. But Samuel and his partner Evan are not far behind in their ability to alarm: their prospective adoption search has just taken a heart-wrenching turn. Only Paige, the eldest of the headstrong Merrill clan, is her usual self: arriving precisely on time with her well-adapted teens. Little does her family know that she, too, is facing personal struggles of her own.No matter. With her family finally congregated under one seaside roof, Flossy is determined to steer her family back on course even as she prepares to reveal the fate of the summer house that everyone has thus far taken for granted: she’s selling it. The Merrill children are both shocked and outraged and each returns to memories of their childhoods at their once beloved summer house—the house where they have not only grown up, but from which they have grown away. With each lost in their respective heartaches, Clementine, Samuel, and Paige will be forced to reconsider what really matters before they all say goodbye to a house that not only defined their summers, but, ultimately, the ways in which they define themselves. Featuring McKinnon’s “sharp and evocative” (Kirkus Reviews) voice, this warm-hearted novel is perfect for fans of Elin Hilderbrand and Mary Alice Monroe.

The Summer House Details

TitleThe Summer House
Author
FormatPaperback
ReleaseJun 6th, 2017
PublisherAtria/Emily Bestler Books
ISBN1501162802
ISBN-139781501162800
Number of pages336 pages
Rating
GenreFiction, Family

The Summer House Review

  • Lori Palmer (Palmer's Page Turners)
    May 24, 2017
    This book was such a breath of fresh air and just what I needed to get excited for summer! It was everything I love about a summer read--beach house setting, great characters, and a feel good story that makes your heart happy. Normally in books with chapters with multiple characters, I almost always have that one (or two!) character that I'm not as excited to read about. Not so with The Summer House! I loved each character and did not find myself bored or wanting a certain character's chapter to This book was such a breath of fresh air and just what I needed to get excited for summer! It was everything I love about a summer read--beach house setting, great characters, and a feel good story that makes your heart happy. Normally in books with chapters with multiple characters, I almost always have that one (or two!) character that I'm not as excited to read about. Not so with The Summer House! I loved each character and did not find myself bored or wanting a certain character's chapter to be over. I loved each character's story and journey throughout the book. I found myself wishing I could go hang out at the house with this wonderful family.I loved both of the author's previous books, and The Summer House did not disappoint! The writing and the story flowed well and was relaxing to read. The Summer house should definitely be on your summer reading list this year--it is a delightful read!
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  • Sherry
    May 31, 2017
    4.5 stars.an absolutely perfect beach read- Heather McKinnon manages to capture the essence of summer in this book perfectly. The Merill family gather at their beach house to celebrate their father's birthday. Everyone in the family has a secret- from the parents, to the three adult children, to one of the grandchildren. I especially loved the setting for the book because it was written at "my" beach. Definitely recommend this one if you're looking for a good beach book.
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  • Christina (Confessions of a Book Addict)
    May 21, 2017
    4.5 stars. Gosh, I loved this book so much. This is my favorite of her novels so far. As a beach bum I am all about the beach and McKinnon just gets the beach. She captures it beautifully. This book seriously tugged on my heartstrings and made me feel really nostalgic. Her description of the beach were fantastic, so much so that I am longing to go back. I just loved every second. One of my favorite beach reads of the year. Full review to come.
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  • Heather Donovan
    April 9, 2017
    I love a good book set during summer on the east coast, and this one did not disappoint!This book encompasses everything you think about when you hear the words summer house - a gorgeous setting, a dysfunctional family, and drama, drama, drama.This was a well written book that grabbed me from the beginning, full of strong characters and believable behaviors. Fans of Elin Hilderbrand and Mary Alice Monroe will love this book. I will definitely read more books by this author.Thank you to Netgalley I love a good book set during summer on the east coast, and this one did not disappoint!This book encompasses everything you think about when you hear the words summer house - a gorgeous setting, a dysfunctional family, and drama, drama, drama.This was a well written book that grabbed me from the beginning, full of strong characters and believable behaviors. Fans of Elin Hilderbrand and Mary Alice Monroe will love this book. I will definitely read more books by this author.Thank you to Netgalley for providing me with an advance copy in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Jessica Howard
    April 7, 2017
    I really liked this one! Complicated family dynamics, a fun beach setting, and likeable characters. To review for Shelf Awareness.
  • Kathy
    May 19, 2017
    This is a great summer read, with all the necessary trappings: a dysfunctional family, a great summer setting, and lots of drama. I thoroughly enjoyed sitting back in the warm sun, under a cloudless sky, to read it. Flossie Merrill has invited her children and their families to the family summer house in Rhode Island, for their aging father’s birthday. Flossie also wants to check up on her children: Clementine, whose life has recently undergone a major change; Paige, who seems steadfast but who This is a great summer read, with all the necessary trappings: a dysfunctional family, a great summer setting, and lots of drama. I thoroughly enjoyed sitting back in the warm sun, under a cloudless sky, to read it. Flossie Merrill has invited her children and their families to the family summer house in Rhode Island, for their aging father’s birthday. Flossie also wants to check up on her children: Clementine, whose life has recently undergone a major change; Paige, who seems steadfast but who has unpredictable teenagers; and Samuel, who, along with his partner Evan, are struggling to come to grips with their life together. The three grown Merrill children arrive at the summer house, along with their different challenges, and the week at the beach house becomes a good look at how each works through things while interacting with each other. The story covered this aspect well, with look backs to their childhoods and how far each has come. This is definitely a great summer read, either at home or at the beach/on vacation. It is not terribly fast moving, but remains interesting and will hold your attention from start to finish. The author should think about building on this book and making the Merrill family stories a series. I received this form NetGalley to read and review.
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  • Leith Devine
    May 5, 2017
    My thanks to Atria Books and NetGalley for the ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.A great summer read! A story that encompasses the arc of a family, the highs and the lows, set in the family summer home by the beach. Beautifully written, and hard to put down. It made me wish I had a summer house to go to with my extended family.Flossie Merrill has finally gotten all her children and their families back to the summer house in Rhode Island where generations of their family have spen My thanks to Atria Books and NetGalley for the ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.A great summer read! A story that encompasses the arc of a family, the highs and the lows, set in the family summer home by the beach. Beautifully written, and hard to put down. It made me wish I had a summer house to go to with my extended family.Flossie Merrill has finally gotten all her children and their families back to the summer house in Rhode Island where generations of their family have spent the summer. It's their father's eightieth birthday, and Flossie has planned a big party, but she has another reason for gathering the family together. Flossie worries about all her children for different reasons - her daughter Clementine has had a life-changing event, Samuel and his partner Evan are struggling with adoption, and Paige seems fine, but has unpredictable teenagers. Her children arrive, all with own their own literal and figurative baggage in tow. One of the things I most enjoyed about this book was the interactions between the siblings, based on habits learned as children. Sam and Paige are very competitive, and not always to their benefit. Paige and Clem have an interesting relationship as sisters. As the week progresses, the relationships between the three siblings and their parents strengthen as they begin to see one another for the adults they are in the present.The writing in The Summer House is excellent, and the story is well paced. I was engrossed in this book and invested in the characters. They seem like real people that you'd enjoy getting to know.All in all, this was a fantastic book and will make a great summer beach read. I highly recommend it.
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  • Jennifer
    May 26, 2017
    This is the 3rd book I've read by Hannah McKinnon, and she definitely has become a must-read author for me. This one is more family drama and less chick lit than her previous two books, but just as enjoyable, about a week in a family's Rhode Island beach house, told from the perspective of each of the 3 adult children and their mother, all dealing with their own issues. An absolute perfect summer read, my only regret is that I didn't save it to read on my own beach vacation in a few months! Than This is the 3rd book I've read by Hannah McKinnon, and she definitely has become a must-read author for me. This one is more family drama and less chick lit than her previous two books, but just as enjoyable, about a week in a family's Rhode Island beach house, told from the perspective of each of the 3 adult children and their mother, all dealing with their own issues. An absolute perfect summer read, my only regret is that I didn't save it to read on my own beach vacation in a few months! Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for a free copy in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Donna Palmer
    May 27, 2017
    If you are a fan of Elin Hildebrand and Nancy Thayer, then you will enjoy this beach read. I love all stories that put my toes in the sand and grasp hold of a family while telling a happy ending story! It's a perfect setting with flawed characters and reminds me that everyone has troubles no matter how "privileged" their upbringing may be. I hope Hannah McKinnon writes many more books like The Summer House that can put me in a good summery mood.
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  • Ellen
    May 14, 2017
    Flossy and Richard have invited their children, spouses and kids to their summer home in Rhode Island for Richard's 75th birthday. Paige, the oldest, always striving and pushing herself and others; Sam, the successful businessman, not caring about fitting in, and Clem, a young mother recently widowed, each with their own challenges and issues to deal with. I enjoyed the book, and thought it was a good summer read.
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  • Tara
    May 10, 2017
    I received this arc from Netgalley for an honest review.This is my first read by this author. I love beach you contemporary reads and this seemed like a perfect fit. I loved the characters and how they all worked through the book. Each of the siblings were going through a life change and I liked how they referred back to their childhood. I wonder if this is a stand alone of if there is more to come. Lots of questions left unanswered and I'd like to know where everyone goes from here.
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  • Alissa
    May 30, 2017
    Fun summer read about three siblings who gather at their parents beach house. I liked the multiple points of view and the resolution.
  • Ashley Ludwig
    April 29, 2017
    A family story that takes readers on a summer journey with clearly identifiable characters. Whether you are an east coast lover or dip your toes in the mighty Pacific, The Summer House by Hannah McKinnon is one anyone can visit and find themselves inside its weathered pages. I love the journey of Flossy's children back home to their summer refuge, the way that they remember who they were, and see how far they've come. Definitely putting this one in my beach bag.*I received a complimentary versio A family story that takes readers on a summer journey with clearly identifiable characters. Whether you are an east coast lover or dip your toes in the mighty Pacific, The Summer House by Hannah McKinnon is one anyone can visit and find themselves inside its weathered pages. I love the journey of Flossy's children back home to their summer refuge, the way that they remember who they were, and see how far they've come. Definitely putting this one in my beach bag.*I received a complimentary version of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.
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  • Mary
    May 8, 2017
    The Merrill family is meeting at their summer house at the Rhode Island shore to celebrate their father’s 75th birthday. Flossy, their mother, has planned the perfect party that will take place on the last night of their week together. She only hopes her adult children won’t kill each other before that night. Each one brings their own drama with them and thinks nothing of reliving sibling rivalries, perceived slights, etc. Paige, the eldest, feels like she’s losing control of her life. Middle ch The Merrill family is meeting at their summer house at the Rhode Island shore to celebrate their father’s 75th birthday. Flossy, their mother, has planned the perfect party that will take place on the last night of their week together. She only hopes her adult children won’t kill each other before that night. Each one brings their own drama with them and thinks nothing of reliving sibling rivalries, perceived slights, etc. Paige, the eldest, feels like she’s losing control of her life. Middle child Samuel and his husband lost out on a chance to adopt and worry they’ll never get another chance. Youngest daughter Clem, a widow of two years, is just beginning to feel like she can move forward in her new life as a single parent of two young children. I especially loved the parents, Richard and Flossy.The Summer House takes place over the course of one week. I loved the setting, the messy family dynamics, and how easy it was to relate to Hannah McKinnon’s characters. One of my favorite scenes is when one of the children gives a speech at the birthday party – it was quite emotional. I really enjoyed my time with this novel and recommend it to fans of the author and family dramas. It makes my 2017 Favorites List, for sure. *I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for my unbiased review.
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  • Jamie Holzberg / Fluff Smut & Murder
    April 3, 2017
    New review posted on FluffSmutandMurder.com!!
  • Cathleen
    April 1, 2017
    The healing of a house by the ocean.
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