Just Read: “Winter Solstice” by Elin Hilderbrand

Read September 2, 2020 – September 5, 2020

There’s not much that’s as fulfilling as completing a series with loose ends tied up just so. Elin, my girl, you did it again. I read in the acknowledgements that this last book in the Winter Street series wasn’t planned. Elin pushed for a three-book series and was approached to write an additional installment. I’m so glad we were gifted with another because it feels so complete now. Though I’m sad there isn’t going to be another, I sure hope I see more Christmastime novels from Elin Hilderbrand. Just a tiny disclaimer… if you haven’t read the first three, Winter Street, Winter Stroll, and Winter Stormsthis review is going to spoil a lot for you. Go check out my reviews for those, in order, and read the books before coming back to read this review.

What is it about? 

Oof, you know this one is going to hurt. Kelley, the patriarch of the Quinn family, has terminal cancer and it’s just heartbreaking to watch him fade. Although Kelley may be in the care of hospice at the Inn, the rest of the family is booming and beaming all over Nantucket and New York. Ava is growing in her role at the elite private school in the city as she questions her relationship with Potter after meeting his son. Margaret brings out that you don’t really know a man until you see him parent his child; the frustration of being an outsider is palpable. Margaret, on the other hand, is going through a transition of her own as she contemplates her looming retirement from broadcasting.

Kevin and Isabelle have baby number two and seem pretty happy, but Isabelle still has some hang-ups about Kevin’s ex-wife Norah’s involvement in her sister-in-law Jennifer’s life. Jennifer is recovering from addiction and seems to be doing okay but when Norah doesn’t completely exit her life it makes her question whether she can get away with buying just a few more pills. Bart, our war hero who returned safely from Afghanistan, wants to reenlist but in comes a beau that might keep him on Nantucket. There is so much going on in this one and each Quinn gets a satisfying end to their storyline as the series comes to a close.

What does it have?

  • Terminal Illness
  • Recovery from Addiction
  • The Next Step – in life and love
  • VIOLENT CRYING – you will, and the characters might too

Remember when I said that the third book really got me? It’s because I hadn’t read this one yet. The crying was so intense that my dog, Winnie, had to come to the rescue on numerous occasions because I just couldn’t hold it together. You think you see it coming but you just have no clue how tough it gets reading the big moments in these characters’ lives after you spent hours reading about them in the other books. I kind of felt like Michael Scott in his last episode of “The Office” when everyone is singing to him and he knows something big is happening and it’s gonna hurt like a B. I will say, on the giant plus, we get a recipe for a Thanksgiving salad from Jennifer and it sounds ahhhh-mazing. The recipe: “…an autumn salad of mixed greens, butternut squash, dried cranberries, goat cheese, and toasted pecans with an apple cider vinaigrette.” I’m going to make something similar for Thanksgiving this year, FOR SURE, minus the goat cheese (I don’t eat animal products).

Is it worth reading?

You have to, you really just must, read this book. The entire series, even. Obviously read the other ones before you read this but once you have, you simply cannot skip this book. 

Now the real struggle begins. What on earth should I read next? I have a few on my shelf, on my Amazon wish list, and some I wanted to look up. Decisions, decisions… What are you reading?

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