Book Review: "The Summerhouse" by Jude Deveraux
The book "The Summerhouse" by Jude Deveraux was totally responsible for jumpstarting my imagination this summer. It got me thinking about what I would do if I were given the opportunity the three characters in the book received.
Ms. Deveraux wrote an interesting and entertaining tale of life changes and what we would or wouldn't do if given a second chance to get a do-over for a three week period of our life. I waited so long to write the review because of two reasons: one I had a strong urge to study my life and pinpoint the pivotal moments in my timeline and two the book is just so good I need to reread it two more times. I'm thinking once I finish this review I'll read the book again.
I bought the book in the first place because of previous experience I know that Jude Deveraux is an excellent writer and can tell such fascinating tales. The real kicker was blurb on the back cover. It said the book was about three friends, Leslie Headrick, Madison Appleby and Ellie Abbott who all have the same birthday and were fixing to turn 40 and all three were taking a look back at their lives and the choices they had made.
Normally, this wouldn't do much for me because I do enough second guessing my life choices without reading about someone else's could-have-beens. It fact it didn't do much for more me this time either, but I read further on and it claims that a Madame Zoya has the power to send them back in time to relive three weeks from their past. Any three weeks – ladies choice. I love paranormal themes so this is what finally convinced me to buy the book instead of going to the library and borrowing it.
Most of book is setting up the three women's stories so you will know why they choose their particular three weeks. Ms. Deveraux was so clever with how she wrote about their lives that I forgot about the paranormal theme I was expecting. It wasn't until page 214 when the first hint of something extra special will be happening here that I remembered that I was expecting it.
Anyway, I spent a lot of free time this past summer and fall thinking about which three weeks would I choose to relive. Once your three weeks is up Madame Zoya gives you the choice of keeping your new or old timeline. Madame Zoya also gives her clients the option of remembering the old timeline along with the new timeline. I would ask to remember. Since I actually haven't traveled back in time to make the changes I have in mine I don't know if I would take the new life or stick with this one. I'm hoping that given a new chance that I wouldn't screw up as badly and I would want to change timelines.
The book is still affecting my imagination and making me think up "what ifs." All I know for sure is if I am ever given the opportunity to be one of Madame Zoya (or someone like her) clients I know which three weeks I would relive.
I know one other thing this is a totally awesome book. I highly recommend it.
"The Summerhouse" by Jude Deveraux. Pockets Books, New York, 2001. Paperback version: 391 pages, $7.99.