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I am SO glad that you liked this book. I read it last year and it blew me away. I don't usually use that phrase but it is the only one that really describes how it made me feel.
It was the first piece of her writing that I had read and my first thought was that this woman is the 21st century female successor to William Trevor - and I can't give it any higher praise than that as I am utterly in awe of his work which I first read more than 30 years ago.

I have her book of short stories, Walk the Blue Fields, but haven't read it as yet and there is one other collection of short stories, Antarctica, which is in my wishlist and will probably be on my shelves before long.


Sadly, my library doesn't have this book. It's too bad, because it sounds like a good read. Maybe I can find a cheap copy online. :)


Have not heard of Keegan, but will look for her writings. I remember reading Ellen Foster years that title changed in my mind as I read the story.

Have just gotten back from a trip & catching up on your posts. Here's a couple thoughts: for beach reads, I'd recommend some early Nancy Thayer (3 Women at the Water's Edge or My Dearest Friend) or Ann Rivers Siddons...Colony is my favorite. While I was away, I read May Sarton's House by the Sea. I'd just finished her Journal of a Solitude & enjoyed that. I wanted to follow her from her home in NH to ME.


I WILL look for Foster and for Claire Keegan. Thank you for this thoughtful and provoking review.


I hope you don't mind my chiming in on your comment, but, you have reminded me of a favorite beach read of so many years ago in mentioning Nancy Thayer's 3 Woman at the Water's Edge. We read it, many years ago, for a summer book discussion.


Now I'm chiming in as well.
I love that Nancy Thayer novel too. Most of her books actually. Nice to see that others love it too.


I saw a review of Foster (possibly on Book Around the Corner's blog) a few years ago and thought I'd love to read it. Until I saw your review I'd forgotten all about it.
It does sound very good.


My list of 'recommendations by Danielle' is growing:) My library has it, that makes chances I will actually read it sooner than later very good.


You've been reading some good books lately! This one sounds quite wonderful!


I totally agree w you! I'm coming across new authors & titles I feel I just have to read. Certainly opening new reading avenues I might not have ventured down before.


I have her Walk in the Blue Fields and had read a few of the stories from it, so I knew the novella would be good. I think I must have read a story in the New Yorker (not doing so well in my weekly New Yorker reading this year which is a shame since I discover all sorts of wonderful new writing talent) by her and wanted to try more of her work. And I fully expect to buy Antarctica, too. She reminds me a lot, too, of William Trevor--her writing (and his) is really amazing. I am always so impressed by authors who can create something so beautiful like this story in such a streamlined manner. So, it just goes to show you--sometimes I feel just a little bit like I am 'cheating' by reading a really short work, but you can't compare--sometimes there is more to a story like this than a book three times its size! Needless to say I had a good reading month in March!


Do look for her--she is amazing. I am not sure this book was published in the US? I might have a UK copy. You might also try googling her name....hey, you can read Foster here:

Not sure it is the whole story (it might be since my book was pretty slender), but you can see what a wonderful writer she is!


Wow, now that you have mentioned Nancy Thayer and I see all the replies I can see I will have to give her a go as well! ;) Thanks for the suggestions. I have not yet read Ellen Foster, but interestingly I was just looking at Kaye Gibbons's books in the last couple of weeks, but then I put them back as I know I already have so many books started.... I hope your trip was good and you got in lots of reading! I know I do have Colony--never read but have owned for years and years and I love May Sarton and have House by the Sea as it is a little fantasy of mine to at least someday travel to Maine. I have this idea that I would love it there and never want to leave!!


Well, now I see I must find a copy of it to read, too! ;)


Wow, how have I missed her? I have seen her books in the supermarket actually and the covers always look so beachy and pleasing but I always think 'supermarket books' won't be for me, if you know what I mean. Now I will go and see what they have, but I will look for her Three Women... first. Do you have other favorites?


I think you might be able to read it online here:

You will love her I think!


It is good--it looks like it was in the New Yorker some years ago and I think you can still read it online:

She's a wonderful writer!


Oh wonderful! If you like William Trevor, you will like Claire Keegan too. I think the story can also be read online, though it is nice to have the book copy.

I had a great month of reading in March--lots of good new to me authors--maybe this year will turn out to be a really good reading year, after a few disappointments the last couple of years.


I seem to be on a roll, which is nice. If life is blah otherwise at least I am getting my fill of good books! And if you want to try her writing:

It looks like this story was originally printed in the New Yorker.


Hope this doesn't get lost in all the replies & future posts. Regarding Nancy gotta read her early stuff. My absolute favorite is My Dearest Friend. Her later writing is more 'chic lit' than I can deal with. Ellen Foster...I tried to read this 3 times before I 'got' it. I found I had to slow down my reading and begin to think like a 10 year old girl before I could enjoy it. I think I could live on the Maine coast until I hear about the harsh winters they have. My ultimate goal should probably be summer in Maine, winter on Sanibel but that's never going to happen.


Luckily Typepad puts all the new comments to the top on the backend so I can see comments on older posts! Ah, so now I understand better why I have always looked at the Thayer books in the supermarket but put them back undecided. Not that there is anything wrong with chic lit, but it just depends on my mood.I AM however going to order the two Thayer books you recommended--I was surprised to see they are OOP, but I will just get nice cheap used copies. I have owned Ellen Foster probably since it first came out in paper, but I always look at it and then quietly slide it back onto the shelf. I really do need to read more of her work in any case. I am not sure I could live somewhere where the winters are worse than Nebraska, but like you I could happily summer there. And I bet the autumn season is beautiful, too. Is Sanibel off the coast of FL--and don't they have white beaches? Yeah, that's a nice place to fantasize about....I'll join you! ;)


I absolutely loved Nell.
Some of her novels are quitedark, which is surprising, given the fluffy covers. Belongings really dragged me down. Maybe it was me because I wasn't well when I read it.
She reminds a bit of Elizabeth Berg.


Sanibel is off the coast of FL, on the Gulf side. White beaches & so many seashells it's like they've been brought in by 18 wheelers. We'll stay at the Sunset Beach resort...right on the 'elbow' of the island so we can watch the sunrise and the sunset. A large number of books are required! Oh...the guy who owns Doc Ford's, Randy something White, writes an action type series that takes place on Sanibel. I don't really care for the series, but like the Sanibel references & the restaurant. We can dream, can't we?


I once had a French friend (sadly have lost touch with her now) who is a travel agent and so she and her family always went to very exotic places with sandy beaches. As a matter of fact she had these cool glass jars filled with sand from all the places she had visited and I remember her talking about Sanibel. Sandy beaches, lots of shells and lots of books sounds sort of like paradise to me! I can be very forgiving when it comes to books if the author either tells a really good story or if the setting is just right!


Wow, looking at the covers of her current books--they seem quite beachy--the sort you just consume and forget, but to compare her to Elizabeth Berg, who I really like, is high praise indeed! Now I will add Nell to my wishlist, too!

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