Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Review: Every Time You Go Away by Beth Harbison

In New York Times bestselling author Beth Harbison's most emotional novel ever, a fractured family must come together at a beach house haunted by the past.

Willa has never fully recovered from the sudden death of her husband, Ben. She became an absent mother to her young son, Jamie, unable to comfort him while reeling from her own grief.
Now, years after Ben’s death, Willa finally decides to return to the beach house where he passed. It’s time to move on and put the Ocean City, Maryland house on the market.

When Willa arrives, the house is in worse shape than she could have imagined, and the memories of her time with Ben are overwhelming. They met at this house and she sees him around every corner. Literally. Ben’s ghost keeps reappearing, trying to start conversations with Willa. And she can’t help talking back.

To protect her sanity, Willa enlists Jamie, her best friend Kristin, and Kristin’s daughter Kelsey to join her for one last summer at the beach. As they explore their old haunts, buried feelings come to the surface, Jamie and Kelsey rekindle their childhood friendship, and Willa searches for the chance to finally say goodbye to her husband and to reconnect with her son.

Every Time You Go Away is a heartfelt, emotional story about healing a tragic loss, letting go, and coming together as a family.

My Review:

A powerful story about moving on after losing the love of your life. 

It’s been three years since Willa Bennett’s husband, Ben, passed away in their beach house in Ocean City.  Willa hasn’t been back since then.  When she finally decides to sell the house, she heads there to prepare it for the sale.  When Willa arrives, she finds more than just memories.  Ben’s ghost is there too.  But he’s not there haunting the house.  He has returned to help Willa move on.   He doesn’t want her grieving for him anymore.  He wants her to find love again.  He also wants to help mend her relationship with their son, Jamie. 

While Willa thinks she is going crazy at first, she starts to look forward to Ben’s visits.  Then, Willa’s friend Kristen arrives to help Willa and soon Kristen’s daughter, Kelsey, and Jamie are there.  The four of them spend the summer making new memories as they prep the house for sale.  But in the end, will they be able to say goodbye to the beach house that has created so many great memories? 

Even though this book deals with death and is very emotional, it really was an enjoyable story.  I had a hard time finding a spot to end each night.  The only problem I had with the book was I wanted more closure in the end. I would have loved to have seen Willa find someone new and see if Jamie and Kelsey’s friendship turned to romance.  The descriptions of the beach and surrounding area took on a whole new character of the book too.  It was easy to visualize the scenes.  I would recommend this book to all of my friends and family. 

Thank you to St. Martin’s Press and NetGalley for an ARC of this book in exchange of an honest review. 

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