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@Download Kindle º The Beach Trees Î From The Bestselling Author Of After The Rain, Sea Change, And The Color Of LightFrom The Time She Was Twelve, Julie Holt Knew What A Random Tragedy Can Do To A Family At That Tender Age, Her Little Sister Disappeared Never To Be Found It Was A Loss That Slowly Eroded The Family Bonds She Once Relied On As An Adult With A Prestigious Job In The Arts, Julie Meets A Struggling Artist Who Reminds Her So Much Of Her Sister, She Can T Help Feeling Protective It Is A Friendship That Begins A Long And Painful Process Of Healing For Julie, Leading Her To A House On The Gulf Coast, Ravaged By Hurricane Katrina, And To Stories Of Family That Take Her Deep Into The Past Kind of a vanilla book for me The setting was what spoke to me most about the book It made me want to be on a secluded beach, listening to the bird calls and smelling the breeze There are two protagonists in the book, Julie and Aimee Julie s story frames the book She has become the guardian to a five year old boy after his mother dies young of a heart condition She takes him to New Orleans to meet his family and also to restore a beach house in Biloxi that she now co owns with that family, also thanks to the deceased friend.Turns out that Julie s friend ran away from her home in the South and never looked back The mystery to why she did is the puzzle to solve in the book In the end, the friend s reasons seem extremely contrived and unsatisfactory There was a gothic story here, but it wasn t handled well enough to really shine in that genre.Julie s sister disappeared seventeen years ago Since then, Julie s never really let herself have a life due to her guilt about possibly having been able to prevent the disappearance She spends her nights trolling missing persons websites Aimee a strangely modern spelling is the other protagonist She s the grandmother or great grandmother to this little boy She begins to slowly tell Julie the story of her life in the 1950 s In theory this story is to help them put the pieces together and figure out why Julie left While Aimee s story is by farinteresting, for me it didn t work as a way to tell the reader the true story of the book It s drawn out over months and months this might build tension in a book but it s a ridiculous way to give another person information about a problem that you both want to solve It might have been better to do the lost letter thing instead of having a living person hold back information, while still wanting that person to be sympathetic Julie is a real sad sack in the book Of course, there s a romance, but I couldn t feel why the man in the relationship would be drawn to her, other than she s gorgeous in some non specific way Julie s pain is sad, but she s such a fuddy duddy for a 29 year old woman that I got impatient with her a lot She also had tons of time and apparently money to spend, docenting part time at a museum while mainly focusing on the renovation of this house, playing with the child, and wandering on the beach a lot There s a kind of nasty undertone to the racial and homosexual aspects of the book Turns out that one of the characters is repeatedly raped while her husband also has an affair with or also rapes the hired help A very weird, gothic dynamic, which never really gets explored The race aspect seems very glossed over for an issue that definitely would have had a huge impact on how these people lived, and it was a shame not to examine itthoroughly And then there s the crazy lesbian trope which I definitely could have done without Again, if explored intelligently it could have been a great issue I m sure that many women had to conceal who they were and tolerate sex that they really didn t want I m sure this still happens in order to conform to the dictates of society But nothing was done with the issue that made me think that the author had thought these tragedies through.The difficulty of moving on after loss was what the author really seemed to want to address in this book, and she did a decent job of that. Ok, here s the thing It was a gripping read I debated on 3 or 4 stars, but ultimately decided that I since I really, really wanted to find out what happened, that was saying something I have five main issues 1 The historical part of the story was fantastic However, the newer story in the book was not nearly as good as the story in the past I kept wanting to skip ahead to go back to Aimee s story.2 The reason that Monica left was not believable to me It wasn t good enough to stay away from her brother and grandmother for 10 years, no way.3 I didn t get the sense that Monica and Julie were as close as Ms White wanted us to believe It didn t come through in the plot.4 Aimee says that she and Julie will share stories and find the answers I felt as though Julie s story held none of the answers She found a picture album, that s it If either Trey or Aimee had bothered to look through Monica s stuff when she left, they would have found it 10 years earlier Why didn t they look There was no good reason given.5 The story of Chelsea is unfinished But not in an open ended, frame your own ending sort of way it waslike Ms White forgot to finish that part of the story.However, like I said, it was a very suspenseful and gripping read I wanted to know what happened I hated to put it down Most of my issues have to do with the fact that the ending seemed rushed and unfinished. I have been sitting here since I finished the book trying to come up with a good review I just keep coming back to Wow I love Karen White s books, but this is my absolute favorite I found myself torn between wanting to keep reading to find out what happened, and wanting to readslowly so as to be able to savor the story longer No need to rehash the plot not that I ever do anyway since that has been done numerous times by thoseskillful at that than I Just read it Then you can sit with the book closed in your lap and say Wow too. After finishing THE BEACH TREES, I longed forof the story, and to go and see what New Orleans and the Gulf Coast are like I closed the book, and it was as though I d left some good friends behing Karen White s THE BEACH TREES is an excellent and compelling read It begins with Julie, who has inherited part ownership of a home on the river in Biloxi, Mississippi, along with her best friend s five year old son Her deceased friend, Monica, died very young, of a congenital heart problem, and Julie was her best friend She had run away from her roots her family and the places where she grew up because of circumstances that are mysterious to Julie But Julie can understand Monica, because her own family life was pretty dysfunctional, and she lost her younger sister when she was twelve, and went missing while Julie was watching her What a difficult burden for any person to bear The story relates how Julie goes to Biloxi and then New Orleans, meeting Monica s estranged family, and introduces them to Beau his existence previously unknown to them until Julie arrives on the scene.At first, she s very suspicious, as she should be, but later, comes to have a relationship with Monica s family that helps everyone grow and change This is a moving story of reunions and hope even when your whole life has been shattered I enjoyed reading about the relationship of Aimee to everyone in the story She comes to be a grandmother figure to Julie, and enables her to put her life back together again Once you read about 50 pages, you won t want to put this book down