Friday, April 28, 2017

G835 Book Review of shadow of whimsy by Ann Hymes

Name of Book: Shadow of Whimsy

Author: Ann Hymes

ISBN: 978-1-944962-13-5

Publisher: Secant Publishing

Type of book: Massachusetts, fertility issues, love interests, secrets, marriage, relationships, modern times, Cape Cod, life

Year it was published: 2016


Several generations of one family have lived, loved, and lied at Whimsy Towers, a unique oceanfront house in Chatham, Massachusetts. Strong women who refuse to be suffocated by marriage have found excitement and refuge in this house filled with artists and parties. Love surfaces in unexpected ways.

The newest owner, Theresa Alston Crandall, has just inherited the property and leaves her too-predictable husband in Virginia to spend time on the Cape and unravel family secrets and history. She swims, reflects, explores, and watches dramatic cloud formations float high over the ocean as she sorts through the choices in her path forward.

Romance arrives in the form of a young widower and landscape gardener with an awesome pickup truck, who likes Theresa's dog and provides temptation to stay at Whimsy Towers. Tips of tree branches dance with the weight of birds that seem to scream warnings of danger, and the churning ocean disrupts family continuity.

Theresa learns how her Southern grandmother came to buy a storm-weathered New England house and how loveless marriage is not a mandatory life style. The final decision feels just right.


Main characters include Theresa Alston Crandall, a beautiful and imaginative brunette who recently is going through fertility issues and is separated for the first time from her husband Kevin. She knows very little about the ancenstral home of her family and desires to learn more about home. Kevin is Theresa's husband who is best described as extremely practical and trustworthy of Theresa. Gypsy is Theresa's dog who can be seen as a surrogate child. There are also other characters such as Theresa's grandmother, her father and mother as well as love interests. Theresa's grandmother is best described as someone with an unconventional life while Theresa's mother is someone who loved the sea, and Theresa's father is someone who is devoted to her mother. I recall that the first love interest is a gardener, while the second one is a widower


I have read the story from cover to cover, but I think the lesson that the author wanted me to learn-to take a chance- wasn't strong for me.


The story is in third person narrative from Theresa's point of view. A number of things about the characters seemed to be repetitious a lot which killed my enjoyment, and while the scene and the characters' backgrounds were the story's strong points, the characters and the plot were not as strong as the background and descriptions of scenery. I didn't appreciate being constantly reminded that Theresa painted her toe nails red because her husband finds the purchase frivolous, and while I am sorry that Theresa is going through some fertility issues, it was annoying on how she constantly brought it up in the book.

Author Information:
(From the book)

Ann Hymes is a retired real estate broken and mother of two grown daughters. She has a BA in English from Mills College and an MA in English from Washington College. Her published work includes creative nonfiction. An active international volunteer, including service in the Peace Corprs in the 1960s, Ann lives in St. Michaels, Maryland. SHe may be reached at


I found the book to both be charming yet in some parts a bit annoying. It's a short book with extremely vivid scenery about the property that the main character's family owns which I've enjoyed, but I do think that the characters needed more work to be honest. The scenery descriptions were reminiscent quite a bit of Mariah Stewart, but the characters, much to mine disappointment were not fully fleshed out but seemed to have very few attributes to them. Also, the book cover is very beautiful and gorgeous. (something that attracted my 13 month old son to constantly take it off the book)

This is for Book Junkie Promotions

3 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

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