Enchanted August (or Not so Much)

Title: Enchanted August: A Novel

Author:  Brenda Bow

Genre: Fiction/Chick Lit

Date Published: July 5th, 2016

Rating: 3.6 out of 5 stars


The book begins with Lottie Wilkes a wife and mom to a little boy named Ethan. Lottie is facing marital issues with her husband Jon and finds most of her time is concentrated on her 4 year old. It is at his preschool that Lottie finds an ad on the bulletin board for Hopewell Cottage and is introduced to Rose Arbuthnot, the wife of a famous author and mother to twins Bea and Ben.  Rose too has her own issues with her husband and her son Ben who is basically kicked out of preschool for his behavior. With both women feeling overwhelmed by their daily lives they decide to take a chance and rent the cottage on Little Lost Island.  They are also joined at the cottage with Caroline Dester, a famed actress who was recently humiliated at the Oscars, and Beverly Fisher, a MacArthur genius who has recently gone through a very tragic loss. Through the time spent at Hopewell Cottage these 4 strangers come together and are able to strip away the hardships of life they left behind back in New York.

What did I think about the book?

I wanted to really like this book, its why I chose it over another I was debating while standing in the book section at Target. But as I read further along and turned page after page of Enchanted August I kept thinking about the other book. (I’m even thinking about it now) It isn’t that Enchanted August is bad, I loved the author’s writing and I read through it very quickly but it lacked a story line to me. 

 I didn’t feel as though while reading the book I could see the end goal. You know? For example are they going to fix the problems they have at home once they get back from Little Lost Island or do they all become great friends at the end. The timeline of Enchanted August is off to me as well. I know it takes place between August 1st and August 31st but how’d we get from first day at Hopewell Cottage to the Blue Moon in late August without much happening or a whole lot of character development? And another problem for me was I would get lost in the multiple points of view from each character that could switch mid sentence without clarity of who I was suppose to reading the story from now. Enchanted August is told from a third person point of view and sometimes that third person point of view went from Lottie to Rose to Jon and then back to Lottie all in one paragraph. It would make my head spin.

Granted the book is clearly marketed as a beach read and I bought it on impulse buy for a weekend I planned to not do much with. And while I have negative aspects of the book on my mind currently as I write this review, I do have positives as well. For instance I was able to read it in an afternoon and it didn’t bother me to quit reading it, so I had to like it enough to see what happened. And as I wrote earlier the author writes well. The sentences follow and I’m not having to re-read parts I didn’t quite understand the first time; and who doesn’t like that?

But my overall thought of Enchanted August: maybe next time I grab the other book instead.


Who would I recommend this book to?

Anyone looking for a light read. The book is a few pages over 300 and could be completed in an afternoon or a day at the beach. 

Who would I not recommend this book to?

If you don’t like Chick Lit skip Enchanted August. Can’t stand horrible husbands also skip it. Seriously the husbands in this novel are appalling (add that to another negative for this book). A story lacking a plot I’d also pass and find something else.

Happy Reading,