4 out of 5 Stars
One summer day on the beach in Florida, two extraordinary things happen to Maeve Donnelly. First, she is kissed by Daniel, the boy of her dreams. Then, she is bitten by a blacktip shark.
Eighteen years later, Maeve has thrown herself into her work as a world-travelling marine biologist discovering more about the minds of misunderstood sharks. But when Maeve returns home to the legendarily charming and eccentric Hotel of the Muses where she was raised by her grandmother, she finds more than just the blood orange sunsets and key lime pies she’s missed waiting for her.
While Maeve has always been fearless in the water, on land she is indecisive. A chance meeting on the beach with a plucky, irresistible little girl who is just as fascinated by the ocean as Maeve was growing up leaves her at a crossroads: Should she rekindle her romance with Daniel, the first love she left behind when she dove into her work? Or indulge in a new romance with her colleague, Nicholas, who turns up in her hometown to investigate an illegal shark-finning operation?
What a great summer read! Just the right amount of cute romance, mystery and drama. While being nice and light, it also had some darker undertones that got me thinking about the different ways people deal with loss. Do you bottle it all up inside? Do you face that loss head on? Do you talk about it, or just ignore it ever happened? There are so many ways, whether good or bad. Who’s to say what the right way is?
There is also a note of mystery to it as Maeve tries to find out who is finning sharks off the coast. Hundreds of poor sharks having their fins removed leaving them to drown in the Gulf. It was an eye opener!
Usually, I’m not a fan of children. But, I think that Hazel was actually my favourite character in the book. She was smart and guileless. She reminded me of myself when I was her age… except my club was based around a squirrel. His name was Fifi.
The one issue I had with this book…. come on. You all knew this was coming… was how easy everything was for Maeve. I want this guy *you get him* No, maybe I want this guy *you get him* Hmmm… maybe I made the wrong decision *guy bows out gracefully* Ya. Like life actually works like that.
She also love sharks, but can apparently easily forgive people for being involved with being involved in cutting off their fins and leaving them to drown…. That would be like me finding out my man was involved in disposing of kittens that someone had drowned. THAT’S NOT GOING TO HAPPEN!!
But, all in all a highly enjoyable read and I would definitely recommend it!! This is the perfect time of year to read it,as well!
PICK UP YOUR COPY HERE!
Ann Kidd Taylor is the coauthor of Traveling with Pomegranates, a memoir written with her mother, Sue Monk Kidd. Published by Viking in 2009, it appeared on numerous bestseller lists, including the New York Times list, and has been published in several languages. Sue Monk Kidd, is the award-winning and bestselling author of the novels The Secret Life of Bees, The Mermaid Chair, and The Invention of Wings.
The Shark Club is Ann’s first novel. She lives in southwest Florida with her husband, son, and two dogs.
The Shark Club is Best Served with a Death in the Gulf Stream Cocktail
Well, no one dies….. ok. Well, sharks do. But, this drink still really called out to me for this one. Maeve does die in the Gulf in a sort of way. When she’s awakened to her love of sharks, when she realizes that maybe her life should be different than she envisioned. That maybe she should let go of her past and be reborn. It is also bitter, like the loss they all experience in this novel.
- Peeled zest and 1 tablespoon juice from 1 lime
- 4 dashes Angostura bitters
- 1 Teaspoon simple syrup (optional)
- 3 oz Genever Gin (this is gin made in holland that has more of a bitter note than other gin. I used a local gin from Dillon’s Small Batch Distillery instead as it has a more bitter note and a little more of an anise flavour to it)
- Fill a tall glass with ice
- Add lime peel, juice, bitters and simple syrup (if you use it… I did not)
- Top with Genever