Islands
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Islands

3.77 of 5 stars 3.77  ·  rating details  ·  2,631 ratings  ·  177 reviews
Anny Butler is a caretaker, a nurturer, first for her own brothers and sisters, and then as a director of an agency devoted to the welfare of children. What she has never had is a real family. That changes when she meets and marries Lewis Aiken, an exuberant surgeon fifteen years older than Anny. When they marry, she finds her family—not a traditional one, but a group of C...more
ebook, 496 pages
Published October 13th 2009 by HarperCollins e-books (first published 2003)
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Gatlianne Gatlianne
Nov 30, 2013 Gatlianne Gatlianne rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition Recommends it for: No one
I finished this book because the cover said "National Best Seller" and I thought - there has to be a reason this book is a best seller so I'm going to finish it!

I closed the book when I was finished thinking - nope - there wasn't a reason. People must have bought it for the author's name.

This is the second Siddons book I've read. I wasn't pleased with the first either. When the story started out in "Islands" I thought it had potential. I was in the world of Charleston and I learned a few things...more
Mike
So, how do you write a review for a book for whom you clearly weren’t the intended audience, but you read it anyway? I read it because I was curious about the genre, even though I can’t really say what the genre is. I’m not even sure I know what the theme of the book was. It seems, on the surface, to be about the very ordinary lives of members of Charleston’s privileged society. When I was growing up, one of the favorite jokes in my house was how unrealistic television families were. But, we’d a...more
Mary
Feb 08, 2014 Mary rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition Recommends it for: Anyone who likes contemporary fiction
Recommended to Mary by: Library Book Sale
Anny Butler has always been a caretaker, a nurturer, first for her own brothers and sisters, and then as the director of an agency devoted to the welfare of children. What she has never had is a family of her own to care for. That all changes when she meets and marries Lewis Aiken, an exuberant surgeon fifteen years Anny's senior.

When they marry, Anny finds her family - not a traditional one, but a group of childhood friends from Charleston who are inseparable; who are one another's surrogate fa...more
Dana
I didn't care much for this book. I didn't feel she went into detail enough about any of the characters. I felt more like the places were the main characters instead of the people. I didn't like the characters, I found them to be weird. A group of successful people with lots of money, several homes and families but they were all obsessed with an old dilapidated beach house and the crazy possessive Camilla. None of them seemed to have a connection with or cared much for their children or grand ch...more
Peg
I'm not sure the review I wrote went through, so I thought I would try again. This book seemed to go on and on with little real purpose. It is a story about a group of people, several of whom have known each other since childhood, who own a beach house together on Sullivan Island near Charleston, SC. The setting was interesting to me because we visited that area earlier this year.

The group vows that they will love and care for each other forever. Through the various tragedies and stages of their...more
Tarah


I have had this book for years now and kept reading the story synopsis then would put it back on the bookshelf, finally I was all out of other books so read this. Wow did I ever waste time waiting! This book was great, such a journey through life with all the characters. Never thought the ending would be so twisted but clever and it also answered questions u had throughout the story. What a wonderful book, tears and laughter, I really became invested in the characters! Loved it!
Sarah
While reading this book I found myself longing for a group of friends that is displayed here. I was drawn into the relationships between them and the seemingly sustaining force between them. I enjoyed the dynamics between characters and the descriptions of the settings. The ending was surprising (which does not happen too often in books for me), and I enjoyed that. This book also displayes the goods and bads of deep relationships and the way the relationships develop and unfold.
Beth
I enjoyed this. Some of the reviews said this was not Siddons best work. A story of long time friends enjoying their lives together and discovering one of them is a psychopath. The ending was and wasn't a surprise. Look forward to other works by Siddons.
Joan
Touching, well written book about Charleston and its upper class. Anny, a nurturer, who raises her brothers and sisters because her single mother is a alcoholic at 35 meets Lewis, a doctor, divorced, rich, from the upper class and the man everyone wants to catch in Charleston. He loves Anny because she cares for others. Lewis belongs to a groups of friends who take Anny into their group. This group grew up together. They marry. Anny finds out how the rich live. Several surprised occur in the boo...more
Kathy
Quotable:
It takes a lot to ruffle Henry. She can do it, though. I always wondered, in a way, why he married her, aside from the fact that he’s crazy about her, of course. Henry needs a safe, sheltered harbor more than anybody else I know. He hasn’t had a whole lot of that with Fairlie. Of course, he’d never say so, but I’ve known him all my life. I know when he needs his home port.

And as the slow days burned toward October, Henry seemed to me to have achieved a fragile peace that I thought might...more
Dilley Sue
Some authors find a formula and stick to it come hell or high water. I think the publishing world encourages this. After all, if the first five books dealt with ABC culture and yielded a reasonable amount of sales, then five more books on the same culture should bring about the same amount of profit, right? Never mind that the formula stifles the author's creativity and muffles the reader's imagination, at least the book world isn't taking as big a risk. Well, for all of its flaws, I like Island...more
Cathleen
I picked up "Islands' by Anne Rivers Siddons to try a new author unknown. While I enjoyed reading parts of "Islands" because it brought back memories of the time I lived in the Carolinas, the book was not that great of a read.

The main character, Anny Butler is the director of a Charleston children's welfare agency. While bringing a child to the clinic she meets her future husband. The author in introducing Lewis Aiken, described him as a womanizer. Anny and Lewis start dating and eventually get...more
Brown
Anny Butler is a caretaker, a nurturer, first for her brothers and sisters, and then as a director of an agency devoted to the welfare of children. What she has never had is a real family. That changes when she meets and marries Lewis Aiken, an exuberant surgeon fifteen years older than Anny. When they marry, she finds her family-not a traditional one, but a group of Charleston childhood friends who are inseparable, who are one another's surrogate family. They are called the Scrubs, and they all...more
Kellie
Not the best but pretty good. There is always an interesting twist in her books. This is no exception. A bunch of friends all associated with medicine somehow, go thru the winter of their lives and try and help each other deal with aging and tragedy. The setting is the South Carolina coast. Anny Butler is a caretaker, a nurturer, first for her own brothers and sisters, and then as a director of an agency devoted to the welfare of children. What she has never had is a real family. That changes wh...more
Virginia
Anne Rivers Siddons novels are all about places, places that ground us, places that nurture, places that bring us endless joy . . . and sorrow. Islands is not different. Indeed, like Colony, it is the places in this novel that make the story.

Like Outer Bank, too, this is a story of false friendships and terrible jealously, but to say more would give away the story. Any Butler is a social worker, of sorts, a nurturing person who becomes a much-younger outsider in a group of die-hard Charleston s...more
Joanne
Audiobook – received a MP3 player for Christmas and I wanted to check it out!
Thanks to my librarian sister who helped me download this debut.

This was an enjoyable story. Reminded me of a long beach vacation with
friends. Everything seemed perfect on the outside. The descriptions of
the beach area and Charlestown were very poetic and could have been overly
busy if I “read” this book.

The Scrubs– a group of Charlestown acquaintances mostly doctors who have
been friends forever and share a beach cottage...more
Pam
Aug 20, 2011 Pam rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition Recommends it for: Siddon's fans and older adults
I enjoyed this book but not as much as some of her others. I've read or have on my shelf to read most of her books. The original premise of the book about a group of old friends coming to live together sounded great but it just kind of fell flat for me.
She didn't make me long for a beach house in the Low Country or even to want to visit- the descriptions of dirty, dusty, leaky, musty, salty, smell shirts and blankets; bugs, mosquitos, crocs, gators,heat humidty, sweaty didn't do much for me. I r...more
Gina Lynette
I haven't read anything by Anne Rivers Siddons in a long time and thought I would return to an old friend. I am so sorry I did.

While Anne's prose makes for an easy read, some of her repeated use of rare words was distracting. It was a clever turn of phrase the first time -- poor editing the 4th.

The actual story? It was closer to a weird murder mystery than a novel -- but it pretended to be a novel for a long time. She spends forever telling you how tightly knit these characters are, but never ma...more
Alexa
I admit to being irritated with this book, right up to the 5th CD. The relentless assault of bad news for the main characters was becoming annoying, but there was somewhat of a pay-off in the last fifth of the book. I stuck with it primarily because of the skill of the narrator whose way with the Carolinian (?) ac-
cents was masterful. She handily covered a dozen characters with unique voices which was a treat to listen to, even if the plot was bugging me.

I used to be a big ARS fan, and even had...more
Susan
Islands is the second title I have read by ARS (Sweetwater Creek being the first). I did not enjoy this storyline and was disappointed with the ending. Islands follows the lives of the "Scrubs", 4 Charleston couples who are close friends and in my opinion - way too needy of each other. They all own antiqudated old homes, as well as other assorted houses, but find they are most happy at the beach house. The story follows them through the times that they spend together at the beach house and the L...more
Cynthia Thomason
I am a true Anne Rivers Siddons fan. I love most everything of hers I read. This book fell a little flat for me. It is written in the typical Siddons lyrical style with wonderful phrasing, elegant descriptions and her usual passion for her low country setting. My problem was with the plot which seemed to drag. I read to page 150 and stopped. I just wasn't engaged in what was going on with these characters. The initial romance was under developed. The group dynamics of the "Scrubs" was too narrow...more
Deb
This book started out slow for about the first half, but by the end I wasn't able to put it down. It's the story of four couples who call themselves the scrubs because they are all involved in the medical community of Charleston, South Carolina in some way. The main character is Anny who marries Lewis and is welcomed wholeheartedly to the group. The unquestioned heart of the group is warm and gracious Camilla; she is the one that is credited for holding the group together through a hurricane, de...more
Jean Perry
I generally like Siddons books. She is very good at writing about relationships, especially family relationships. This book was very slow getting to the story for me. Because i have liked her books i stuck with it, altho i was bored for the first half of the book. One of the problems was that she constantly described Charleston, the weather, the people, the neighborhoods, the beaches, now i like some of that when i'm reading, but in this book she does it over and over and over. However! In the s...more
Kristen
I didn't actually finish this book. Somewhere close to half through I was so bored that I didn't even care to find out the end. I don't even know what the whole plot of the book was even about.

I liked the beginning of the story. I loved hearing how Anny (yes that is the correct spelling) met her husband and I also enjoyed learning about his friends. She fit into their group easily and the characters were good.

But then the story seemed to fizzle. There is a death in the group and after the chapt...more
Mary Taitt
I loved this book and almost gave it a five. I loves the slow easy way that it developed. The story was good and well told in a lazy sort of way. The one thing that stopped me from giving it a five is that I felt that some of the characterization was a little lean. That may be my own fault and perhaps I ought to read it again. It takes place near Charleston and sometimes in Charleston and the characters and their lives are interesting. I was surprised that it turned out to be a murder mystery of...more
Lauriann
Many years ago I read "Colony" by Siddons and really enjoyed it, so I thought this would measure up. "The Scrubs" is a group comprised of four couples who have come together and formed a deep bond of friendship based on their love of the low-country of South Carolina. They vow to stay together always. As individuals fell away from this pact one by one for a variety of reasons, the telling became redundant. And yes, to the point of ho-hum boring. I kept waiting for "plot" to develop. I believe it...more
Sara
It took me awhile to finish this book because reading about a group of Charleston wealthy doctors didn't resonate with me. But the story is beautifully told, and they each, even though often underserving, have admirable characteristics... and tragic flaws. I especially loved the visual details, the richness of the setting. It's not a book for the average 21st century reader. It develops with a Southern slowness, building as characters shold (instead of the way most books now days are only about...more
Chris
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jane
I haven't read this author in quite a while so I forgot how much I love her stories. This is a book about deep friendships and it is so well written. And there is quite a twist at the end - I was certainly not expecting it.
Mirjam
my first book by this author.
I loved the nature descriptions. The story comes over as a warm fuzzy cloud, quite unbelievable really and yet i loved it. This book intrigued me, we read about the characters as they progress through life,on the one hand the warm, loving friendship they share and on the other hand this underlying current of menace.It`s because the threat is presented not very subtle but fairly open but long drawn out it still creates a strange effect. I will look out for other works...more
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