The Wishing Hill
Author: Holly Robinson
Review Copy Provided by Author via Sisterhood of the Traveling Book
What if everything you knew about your life was wrong?
Years ago, Juliet Clark gave up her life in California to follow the man she loved to Mexico and pursue her dream of being an artist. Now her marriage is over, and she’s alone, selling watercolors to tourists on the Puerto Vallarta boardwalk.
When her brother asks her to come home to wintery New England and care for their ailing mother, a flamboyant actress with a storied past, Juliet goes reluctantly. She and her self-absorbed mother have always clashed. Plus, nobody back home knows about her divorce—or the fact that she’s pregnant and her ex-husband is not the father.
Juliet intends to get her mother back on her feet and return to Mexico fast, but nothing goes as planned. Instead she meets a man who makes her question every choice and reawakens her spirit, even as she is being drawn into a long-running feud between her mother and a reclusive neighbor. Little does she know that these relationships hold the key to shocking secrets about her family and herself that have been hiding in plain sight.
I have to admit that I found it hard to write a review for this book. Don’t get me wrong, I really enjoyed it – but I have so many thoughts going through my mind that I almost need to sit down and write out my thoughts before writing this review (of course, i’m actually not doing that). So after stepping away for a few days to think about what I wanted to write (but still not really knowing for sure), i’m back to attempt to write my review. Either way, regardless of what I write, this was not quite a five star read for me – there was just something missing to make it just miss out on that list. But it was a good read.
One of the things I really enjoyed was the fact that while it was set in two different locations (Mexico and North-eastern US), and told from 2 different POV’s, that the story was pretty seemlessly woven – which made the reading all the more enjoyable. Sometimes when things jump between POV’s and locations, the story can seem really disjointed, but for some reason it worked here. Which I guess shows the strength of the author’s writing ability (and which is why I will likely pick up other books written by her in the future).
I think my biggest issue with the story in general, was the character of Desiree. Have you ever come across a character that you literally want to slap silly because they are so self-absorbed? That was Desiree for me. Normally, I can deal with insane type characters (I mean, I really liked Gone Girl for all its general screwyness), but for some reason, I just couldn’t get past the character of Desiree. Oh the shallowness, self-absorbed twit that she was. Thankfully, the character of Claire was a great counter for her, in ways that I can’t necessarily describe without getting into a spoiler zone. The supporting cast of Juliet’s brother (Will), Ian (the handy-man), Desiree’s various Beau’s were entertaining and I would be interested in seeing some more of them in the future. I will admit that the ending had a bit of a cheese factor and was maybe a tad overdone which also kind of took away from the power of the rest of the story.
Either way, I gave the book a solid 4 stars and I’ll be looking forward to reading more books by the author in the future.