The Summer Guest

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Random House Publishing Group, Jun 29, 2004 - Fiction - 384 pages
6 Reviews
Winner of the PEN/Hemingway Award for his radiant novel in stories, Mary and O’Neil, Justin Cronin has already been hailed as a writer of astonishing gifts. Now Cronin’s new novel, The Summer Guest, fulfills that promise—and more. With a rare combination of emotional insight, narrative power, and lyrical grace, Cronin transforms the simple story of a dying man’s last wish into a rich tapestry of family love.

On an evening in late summer, the great financier Harry Wainwright, nearing the end of his life, arrives at a rustic fishing camp in a remote area of Maine. He comes bearing two things: his wish for a day of fishing in a place that has brought him solace for thirty years, and an astonishing bequest that will forever change the lives of those around him.

From the battlefields of Italy to the turbulence of the Vietnam era, to the private battles of love and family, The Summer Guest reveals the full history of this final pilgrimage and its meaning for four people: Jordan Patterson, the haunted young man who will guide Harry on his last voyage out; the camp’s owner Joe Crosby, a Vietnam draft evader who has spent a lifetime “trying to learn what it means to be brave”; Joe’s wife, Lucy, the woman Harry has loved for three decades; and Joe and Lucy’s daughter Kate—the spirited young woman who holds the key to the last unopened door to the past.


As their stories unfold, secrets are revealed, courage is tested, and the bonds of love are strengthened. And always center stage is the place itself—a magical, forgotten corner of New England where the longings of the human heart are mirrored in the wild beauty of the landscape.

Intimate, powerful, and profound, The Summer Guest reveals Justin Cronin as a storyteller of unique and marvelous talent. It is a book to treasure.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - carebear10712 - LibraryThing

On the cover of my copy of this book, newspapers and other authors made comments such as: "a work of art," and {Cronin} is a joy to read." I honestly couldn't agree more. He writes beautifully, and ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - porch_reader - LibraryThing

I knew Cronin as the author of post-apocalyptic books like The Passage. But this book came before that series and is a much different type of book. The Summer Guest centers around a fishing camp in ... Read full review

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Contents

Title Page
A GIRL CAN TALK TO HER DAD ABOUT PEAS
Chapter
Copyright

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About the author (2004)

Born and raised in New England, Justin Cronin is a graduate of Harvard University and the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. Awards for his fiction include the Stephen Crane Prize, a Whiting Writers’ Award, and a Pew Fellowship in the Arts. He is a professor of English at Rice University and lives with his wife and children in Houston, Texas.

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