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The Cottage at Glass Beach

Cover of The Cottage at Glass Beach

The Cottage at Glass Beach

A Novel
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Heather Barbieri follows her acclaimed Gaelic-tinged drama The Lace Makers of Glenmara with the resonant tale of a woman who, in the wake of scandal, flees to a remote Maine island to reconnect with her past—and to come to terms with the childhood tragedy that has haunted her for a lifetime.

Set on the rugged New England coast, Barbieri's The Cottage at Glass Beach strikes the perfect balance between high lit and mainstream women's fiction, infusing a potent and unforgettable love story with unforgettable characters that will remain with you long after the final chapter. Richly evocative, Barbieri's narrative of intimacy, struggle, and redemption will call out to readers of Joanne Harris, Alice Hoffman, and other modern masters of drama.

Heather Barbieri follows her acclaimed Gaelic-tinged drama The Lace Makers of Glenmara with the resonant tale of a woman who, in the wake of scandal, flees to a remote Maine island to reconnect with her past—and to come to terms with the childhood tragedy that has haunted her for a lifetime.

Set on the rugged New England coast, Barbieri's The Cottage at Glass Beach strikes the perfect balance between high lit and mainstream women's fiction, infusing a potent and unforgettable love story with unforgettable characters that will remain with you long after the final chapter. Richly evocative, Barbieri's narrative of intimacy, struggle, and redemption will call out to readers of Joanne Harris, Alice Hoffman, and other modern masters of drama.

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About the Author-
  • The author of two previous novels, The Lace Makers of Glenmara and Snow in July, Heather Barbieri has won international prizes for her short fiction. She lives in Seattle with her family.

Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    March 5, 2012
    In the enchanting world of Maine’s Burke’s Island, fanciful stories—of captured selkies becoming dutiful wives and tears cried in the sea beckoning lovers to shore—are gracefully woven into modern reality. Nora Cunningham, 40, was born on the island, but after her mother disappeared when she was five, Nora was whisked away to Boston by her father. Decades later, after Nora’s husband’s scandalous affair, her Aunt Maire invites Nora and her young daughters, Annie and Ella, back to the cottage on Glass Beach to find solace. Welcoming the slow pace of the island, Nora must learn to navigate her new place in life and rediscover the magic of the present while filling in the pieces of her past. At times plodding and mundane, Barbieri’s newest (after The Lace Makers of Glenmara) is saved by the precociously wise Annie, the tenacious and endearing Aunt Maire, and the budding romance between Nora and a mysterious shipwrecked sailor. Agent: Emma Sweeney, Emma Sweeney Agency.

  • Melinda Bargreen, Seattle Times

    "Where Barbieri shines is in her depiction of the microcosm of the island and in the strong links between the generations. Nora discover that 'Everything is connected. The geography of the island, of the soul,' and Barbieri makes that connection real."

  • Tara Quinn, Cleveland Plain Dealer

    "A must read for fans of Sarah Addison Allen's Garden Spells."

  • Library Journal

    "Barbieri's mix of fairy tale and family drama in a picturesque seaside resort makes her third novel a terrific beach read."

  • Marisa de los Santos, author of Falling Together and Belong to Me

    "Part seaside fairytale, part exploration of real-world tensions....Let yourself be transported to Burke's Island, a salt-tinged place steeped in legends of selkies and shipwrecks, but also full of bruised and hopeful people making their wayward, human ways toward happiness."

  • Sarah Jio, author of The Bungalow and The Violets of March

    "Heather Barbieri's The Cottage at Glass Beach is a moving, heartfelt story told with vivid description. Open the book and listen--you'll hear the waves crashing onto the shore."

  • Bookreporter.com

    "Strikes the perfect balance between high lit and mainstream women's fiction, infusing a potent and unforgettable love story with unforgettable characters that will remain with you long after the final chapter....[Barbieri's narrative] will call out to readers of Joanne Harris, Alice Hoffman, and other modern masters of drama."

  • Nancy Thayer, New York Times bestselling author of Heat Wave

    "The Cottage at Glass Beach, an enchanting novel about mothers and daughters on an isolated island, is a romantic, delicious read. Barbieri's beautiful writing and beguiling world view revel in the realities and the mysteries of the sea and of life itself."

  • Susan Maguire, Booklist, starred review

    "Barbieri does such a wonderful job setting up the beauty and mystery of the island and its rich Gaelic roots that it is not a stretch to ask the reader to imagine that the place is also magical. A wonderful, subtle, transporting story."

  • Publishers Weekly

    "In the enchanting world of Maine's Burke's Island, fanciful stories - of captured selkies becoming dutiful wives and tears cried in the sea beckoning lovers to shore - are gracefully woven into modern reality."

  • Melissa Parcel, Romantic Times Book Review

    "Threads of magical realism throughout the book are quite appealing, and the seaside setting is enchanting."

  • Karen Campbell, Boston Globe on The Lace Makers of Glenmara

    "Barbieri's deft writing style is charmingly wry yet evocative, with details and descriptions both telling and vivid. . . . . A sweet summertime yarn [that] . . . provides a lovely, leisurely escape to the bucolic charms of the Emerald Isle."

  • Margot Livesey, author of The House on Fortune Street on The Lace Makers of Glenmara

    "The Lace Makers of Glenmara is richly peopled and beguilingly charming but what ultimately makes it so moving is Heather Barbieri's deep understanding that no life is immune from sorrow and difficulty. I read this wonderful novel with enormous pleasure."

  • Nancy Carty Lepri, New York Journal of Books

    "Ms. Barbieri's writerly sense of whimsy and retrospection implies that anyone can work through adversity to happiness - if only the volition is present."

  • Joanne Harris, author of Chocolat and The Girl with No Shadow, on The Lace Makers of Glenmara

    "The Lace Makers of Glenmara is a charming, moving story, written with a delicate touch."

  • Katie Schneider, The Oregonian

    "Reminiscent of Maeve Binchy's stories of romance and family in tight-knit Irish communities, The Cottage at Glass Beach is full of warmth and sympathy."

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    HarperCollins
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A Novel
Heather Barbieri
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