Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Seven Days of Hilderbrand: The Blue Bistro

I couldn't write "Seven Days of Hildebrand" book reviews without including The Blue Bistro, so I'm re-running a post I wrote a few years ago. Enjoy and stay cool!

(Originally posted on March 26, 2013)

I love a good beach read, even if it's not summertime. Several years ago I swapped books with a friend while on summer vacation and got my first taste of Elin Hilderbrand. The book was Barefoot, and I got sucked into it immediately. Since then, I've made it my mission to read all her books, and I'm excited that she has a new one coming out this summer, called Beautiful Day. For this post, I want to focus on my favorite Elin Hilderbrand book, The Blue Bistro (a story I never tire of!)

The Blue Bistro is set on the island of Nantucket, as all of Hilderbrand's books are. I've put Nantucket on my bucket list of places to visit in this lifetime just so I can enjoy the world the author describes so well in her books.

In The Blue Bistro, a young woman named Adrienne Dealey arrives on Nantucket after a disastrous stint working at a swanky hotel in Aspen, Colorado. She's broke, desperate, and determined not to get involved in yet another disastrous relationship. She's told The Blue Bistro is the place to go for quick cash and good food, and she's immediately drawn to the owner, Thatcher Smith. He hires her as a manager of the bistro, and soon all her financial problems are solved, but she can't deny the chemistry between them. She also can't figure out what his relationship is with the beautiful yet moody chef, Fiona, who is Thatcher's best friend from childhood and business partner. Nor will anyone tell her why the wildly successful restaurant is closing its doors for good after the summer season.

I related to the tale of The Blue Bistro because I spent much of my early 20s also broke and working in restaurants. The people in those restaurants became my surrogate family, much like The Blue Bistro became to Adrienne in the book. I could relate to all the behind the scenes drama, the complicated interactions between the customers and the servers, and the ways delicious food can bring people together and fill the void in the employees' lives.

I enjoyed reading about the relationship between Thatcher and Fiona, and his determination to be there for her as she battles a life-threatening illness, as well as his conflicting emotions as he falls in love with Adrienne.

If you're looking for a good summer read, The Blue Bistro has it all -- romance, intrigue, food and drink, and unforgettable supporting characters. For more about why Hilderbrand writes solely about Nantucket, and a little about her creative process, check out this article.

Do you have a favorite book by Elin Hilderbrand? What is it and why?

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