Beach Trip by Cathy Holton is a great example of why I love women’s fiction. What a great read that I thoroughly enjoyed! I think this novel would make a great beach read with a story that you can really sink into and lose yourself in for a while. I really enjoy novels centered on the friendships of women and Beach Trip is one that shows the enduring and powerful bonds of those friendships.
The novel is about four women: Sara, Lola, Mel and Annie. They were college roomates in the 1980’s and now, almost 25 years later, they are going to get together to put the past behind them and enjoy themselves at the beach for a week. These are four such different women that I found it interesting that they were friends at all but despite what the years had brought them all through, they still had a strong bond with each other.
The story takes us back and forth between the past and the present and I found that really added a lot of substance to the novel and to the characters. It allowed me to really get to know them, what they thought and felt, what their dreams had been and where they had ultimately ended up. What I liked is that each of the women came to the beach with a secret. A secret they weren’t quite sure if they would share. At first the women aren’t too inclined to be nice to each other, let alone share any secrets but as the week passes they start opening up to each other more and more and I think realizing why they had all been friends in the first place.
My favorite characters were Annie and Sara. They both seemed so real and vulnerable. Annie is an obsessive compulsive who can’t stop cleaning. Everything has to be perfect in her world but there’s another side to Annie and over the course of the week she manages to find this person within herself. Sara is a lawyer with two kids and a husband who seems to have it all together but there is trouble with her kids and a world of hurt to settle between her and Mel. Mel is a character like none other. She is the party animal of the group, the unsettled one. She has gone through a few failed marriages and has decided to focus more energy on her writing career. I thought her to be a bit of a lost soul but I think by the end of the book she too finds herself in a way she didn’t think she would. Lola is another I thought to be lost within the confines of a not so good marriage that she was pretty much forced into after college. Her hubby Briggs is a forceful brute who has led her around all the years of her marriage. Does Lola intend to put up with it for the rest of her life or will the trip to the beach open up another avenue for her?
The week brings all the women together closer than ever. It was a time for healing and learning things about each other. I enjoyed how the author, Cathy Holton developed these women, how she let us into their lives in order to understand them and their choices better. I had been pretty sure where the novel was heading in terms of the twist within it’s pages although I didn’t have the last of the novel figured out until much towards the last few chapters and I loved it! This novel is well worth the read if you’re looking for something a little more deep than your average chick-lit novel!
I’d like to thank Lisa at TLC Book Tours for inviting me to participate in this tour. You can see the complete list of tour stops for Beach Trip by Cathy Holton here and be sure to visit Cathy’s website here.