48-year-old Dabney Beech is Nantucket.
Everyone knows her friendly smile and her involvement in anything Nantucket. Dabney also has had a lifelong gift for matchmaking. She can see when people are right for each other and with 42 happy couples all saying Dabney knows a good match when she sees it… its hard to argue the facts.
The only relationship that Dabney can not seem to get right is her own. Meeting Clendenin “Clen” Hughes back when she was in school was the highlight of her life and when she let him so… she thought she was doing what was right for both of them. Yet 27 years later when Clen walks back into her life, Dabney feels all those feelings come surging back as though they had never left. Trouble is Dabney is married to a wonderful man, who while he does not make her heart beat fast like Clen does, would do just about anything to save his marriage to the woman he truly loves.
Torn between what is right.. and what is true… Dabney struggles to make the right decisions, all the while her world is falling apart around her. When her health seems to be battling against her, and she is missing an alarming amount of time from work for a variety of reasons – Dabney has to decide is making this one last match is worth all the trouble it will cause… even if it is her most desired wish.
There is just something summery sweet about an Elin Hilderbrand book. Almost like biting into a perfectly ripe peach. ~Sheila
The Matchmaker is a book I have been excited about. Gorgeous cover, and the promise of a good Hildebrand storyline made me anxious to get started on this one. While there was a lot to like about The Matchmaker (sunny days, Nantucket, romance, I want to be Dabney’s friend…) I actually found a bit in this one that I did not enjoy.
Dabney is OVERLY described in the beginning of the book as being adored by everyone…. in several ways in long drawn out descriptions it is very clearly made that Dabney is beloved. There is also a long drawn out decision to open an email or not… reading the title over and over again. It felt a bit forced and I started to think of the beginning of the book as “word fill”… just putting in as many words as you can to stretch it out. Between that and the description of Clen’s eyes as being “weak tea colored” – that exact description being mentioned three times that I counted… it honestly was almost a deal breaker for me. The whole perfect matchmaking story was a bit over the top and the only character that was described well and felt real was Dabney herself.
I am not sure what happened here with this book as normally Elin Hilderbrand has delightful engaging stories. It took quite a while for me to get into this read and for a while I even considered calling it a DNF and moving on.
If, like me, you do hang in there and finish the book the story does redeem itself a bit but I am not sure enough to have me recommend it.
I would be interested in hearing other thoughts from those of you who finished this book as I am surprised by how disjointed I found it to be.
- Hardcover: 544 pages
- Publisher: Little, Brown and Company (June 10, 2014)