Paperback: 392 pages
Published: February 1st 2008 by Hodder (first published 2007)
Original Title: Silver Bay
ISBN:0340895934 (ISBN13: 9780340895931)
Edition Language: English
When Mike Dormer heads out from London to a small seaside town in Australia to kick-start a hotel development, he expects just another deal. But Silver Bay is not just any seaside town, and the inhabitants of the eccentric ramshackle Silver Bay Hotel – the enigmatic skipper Liza McCullen, her ten-year-old daughter, and her legendary shark-catching aunt Kathleen, as well as the crews of the local whale-watching boats – swiftly begin to temper his own shark-like tendencies. He is left wondering who really has the greater right to the bay’s waters. As the development begins to take on a momentum of its own, and the effect on the whales that migrate past the bay begins to reveal itself, Mike’s and Liza’s worlds collide, with dramatic results. New, unforeseen hazards emerge to confront both the creatures and the McCullen women. How close can you get, before you end up destroying what you love?
This is the fourth book that I have read by JoJo Moyes. If I find that I like an author I tend to try and read most if not all of the books they have written. I started off with Me Before You and I absolutely adored that book. So since then I’ve read a few of hers but Silver Bay has so far been my least favorite.
It starts off terribly slow and in fact I even put it aside for a while and read another book before picking it back up. I just never felt like I was ever connecting to any of the characters. I knew what was going on in the story obviously but it just felt so disconnected that I found it sort of hard to care.
There were all the makings for a really interesting and drama filled read considering this book was filled with family drama, mystery, romance, unrequited love, and more you would think it would not be as dull as it was. The book does deal with some pretty heavy stuff and eventually I did feel a lot of sympathy for some of the characters but that’s not saying much.
The book is told from the point of view of quite a few different people and I think sometimes less is more in the case of narrators. There was just too much head-hopping and it didn’t do anything to help the story or add to it.
I found myself enjoying the relationship between Hannah (Liza’s daughter) and Mike instead of the relationship that ends up happening between Mike and Liza. It felt so forced and like it just came out of nowhere. To me it felt more like this is what’s supposed to happen because of your standard boy tries to ruin girls life, girl hates boy, but then they fall in love trope. Which can be a little eye roll inducing if not told right. I’m not a book snob in any way. I’m all here for some classic cheesy love story novels but when it doesn’t even feel a little bit natural it’s not fun.
The one thing I did quite enjoy in the book was the setting and the imagery of being on the ocean and watching whales and dolphins in Australia. Australia is high, high up on my bucket list of places I want to visit and the thought of an idyllic little bay, going whale watching, and stuff like that is so appealing. I really enjoyed the book for that aspect of it. It’s sure to ignite even a little spark of wanderlust in you.
I’d definitely say this is one you’re better off skipping. As first novels go it’s not so bad I suppose but for my money she has far better books that you can read.