Ama is moving to the south of France to reunite with her college sweetheart. She is going to give her house on Oak Bluffs to one of her goddaughters and she has invited all three of them to spend the summer with her the way they did when they were kids.
Lovingly rendered characters and beautiful depictions of Oak Bluffs, the exclusive Black community within the exclusive Martha’s Vineyard, make this first book in a planned trilogy a great summer escape, even for readers who don’t know Hostin ... Come for the debut novel from an Emmy-winning cohost of The View, stay for the diverse cast of characters in an aspirational, beachy escape.
It takes a little too long to get there, though some may enjoy the leisurely setup and relentless name-checking—a concordance of the Black visual artists, musicians, authors, actors, designers, and celebrities mentioned here, along with the New York and Martha's Vineyard restaurants and bars, could be a valuable book in itself. Hostin's most serious weakness is substituting catalog copy for characterization ... Be patient—once the Le Creuset pot finally starts boiling, this book earns its place on the beach blanket ... Be patient—once the Le Creuset pot finally starts boiling, this book earns its place on the beach blanket.
Some of the plot points hinge on avoidable misunderstandings, particularly between Billie and Dulce, but Hostin nicely captures the Vineyard’s social nuances. This messy beach book packs plenty of drama.