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The High Season

A Novel
Narrated by: Julia Whelan
Length: 10 hrs and 43 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (3 ratings)

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Summary

“A mesmerizing, head-spinning - and sometimes madcap-hilarious - take of have and have-nots.” (People, Book of the Week)

Named one of the best books of the year by Real Simple and Kirkus Reviews.

“In the smart, breezy, sweet spot between Meg Wolitzer and Elin Hilderbrand.” (Entertainment Weekly)

No matter what the world throws her way, at least Ruthie Beamish has the house. Located by the sea in a quiet Long Island village, the house is her nest egg - the retirement account shared with her ex-husband, Mike, and the college fund for their teenage daughter, Jem. The catch? To afford the house, Ruthie must let it go during the best part of the year.

It’s Memorial Day weekend and the start of what Jem calls “the summer bummer”: the family’s annual exodus to make way for renters. This year, the Hamptons set has arrived.  

Adeline Clay is elegant and connected - and will never need to worry about money. Before long, she demonstrates an uncanny ability to help herself to Ruthie’s life. Is Adeline just being her fabulous self, or is she out to take what she wants? 

When an eccentric billionaire, his wayward daughter, a coterie of social climbers, and Ruthie’s old flame are thrown into the mix, the entire town finds itself on the verge of tumultuous change. But as Ruthie loses her grasp on her job, her home, and her family, she discovers a new talent for pushing back. By the end of one unhinged, unforgettable summer, nothing will be the same - least of all Ruthie.  

Praise for The High Season:

“Blundell knows the territory.... Her account of Ruthie’s coming to grips with a career, a daughter and a community in flux is as touching as it is convincing.” (The Wall Street Journal)

“A huge page-turner...so compelling...a classic beach read, but very smart, very intelligently written.” (Us Weekly, Emily Giffin’s summer reading recommendations)

“An acid-laced domestic drama set during one golden summer on the moneyed, beachy North Fork of Long Island.” (The New York Times)

“Judy Blundell wields words like an oyster knife in this shimmering story of art, money, and celebrity.” (Helen Simonson, New York Times best-selling author of The Summer Before the War)

“A wry, often hilarious story of a woman trying to keep it together when everything is going so, so wrong.” (Real Simple)

©2018 Judy Blundell (P)2018 Random House Audio

Critic reviews

“[A] perfect book for your beach bag - even if you’re not Long Island-bound.” (Vogue

The High Season is packed with quirky characters and charm that will last all summer long.” (Hello Giggles

The High Season goes beyond light summer fare. It’s a bit like Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous but with Jane Austen’s type of biting wit and keen eye toward the human heart as an undercurrent.” (Pulse Magazine) 

What members say

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  • Jenn
  • 16-12-18

Finally a Book That Wasn't Just About Romance

I've read so many books with women at the center. And they normally devolve into will she or won't she date/marry/divorce the man. All the other plots take a back seat to the same narrative. And yes, I enjoy romance but I always wanted more. I wanted a story about a woman on a journey that wasn't all about a man. This book delivered. Great plot, a hint of romance, but the woman took the driver seat. And I was not able to predict the ending. Very good. Enjoyed the narrative.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Scott
  • 20-06-18

Elegant writing

Wonderful story with characters you truly care about. I could not stop listening! Judy Blundell’s story of love and change captivated me. Although billed as a “summer read” the story is really about how life changes and learning to let go as well as understanding what to hold close.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Mamabetz
  • 14-07-18

Better than I expected

I think I expected a typical beach read when I started this book -- a familiar problem, solved in a predictable manner, spiced with romance for the middle-aged woman with a philandering husband, and ending happily as it restores the reader's hope that there are still a few good men out there. The High Season has all the ingredients for this typical summer stew, but nothing ends the way I had imagined. I was delighted with the contrast. It's still a good read for a lazy summer day, but I doubt too many readers will find the ending predictable.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Dana
  • 10-06-18

Great listen

Enjoyed very much but found it a little hard in the beginning to follow characters. Figured it out but tricky at times.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Denise
  • 25-07-18

Loved it!

Suspenseful and clever light listen. This one makes excellent reading for the beach in the summer.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Erin Estremera
  • 14-07-18

Good Summer story

Great narration of a fun summer story. Likable characters . Glad I gave it a try!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Shelly Dee
  • 09-06-18

Sort of like cotton candy

This mindless book about the next best town to "The Hamptons" rich folk and wannabees was interesting enough to finish while half listening at work, but barely. It didn't help the story that the narrator's male voices were like chalk on a blackboard only worse in so many ways. If you're looking for something light to read, this is your book.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Pauline Bruno
  • 05-02-20

It gave me a headache!

Julia Whalen is my favorite reader. Why she chose to present this book I will never understand. The story is boring, repetitious and I learned nothing from it. I would give it a zero if it was offered. Don’t waste your time or money.

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  • SM
  • 25-05-19

Ehh

It was alright. I kept waiting for it to be about something. Then I thought it would be Ann Tyler-ish...but still nothing.

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  • Pattykercher
  • 11-02-19

fantastic book I loved this book

I loved this book and the narrator just didn't want it to end ! You got
caught up in the story. just loved
you won't go wrong in purchasing
this book.