The Summer I Dared

Version: Abridged
Author: Barbara Delinsky
Narrator: Linda Emond
Genres: Fiction & Literature
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Published In: May 2004
# of Units: 4 CDs
Length: 5 hours
Ratings:
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Overview

Set on a beautiful island off the coast of Maine, this deeply moving and powerful novel by New York Times bestselling author and 'first-rate storyteller' (The Boston Globe) is about three people who survive a boating accident, exploring not only how each person deals with his or her own twist of fate, but also the effect each survivor has on the other.

WHAT COMES AFTER THE MOMENT THAT FOREVER CHANGES YOUR LIFE?

This is the question that haunts Julia Bechtel, Noah Prine, and Kim Colella, the only survivors of a terrible boating accident off the coast of Maine that claimed the lives of nine other people.

Julia, a forty-year-old wife and mother, has always taken the path of least resistance. Pigeonholed by her controlling family and increasingly distant husband as 'loyal' and 'obedient,' she realizes in the aftermath of her brush with death that there is more to her -- and to the world around her -- than she ever imagined.

Feeling strangely connected to Noah, the divorced, brooding lobsterman who helped save her life, and to Kim, a twenty-one-year-old whose role in the accident and subsequent muteness are a mystery, Julia begins to explore the unique possibilities offered by the quiet island of Big Sawyer, Maine. Suddenly, things that once seemed critical lose significance, and things that seemed inconsequential take on a whole new importance. With each passing moment, each new discovery, Julia grows more sure that after coming face-to-face with death, she must have more from life.

Resolving to make things right for the future and drawing on an inner strength she never knew she possessed, Julia passionately awakens to a new world, fearlessly embracing uncertainties in a way she couldn't have imagined only a few weeks ago.

Set off the coast of Maine, where lobstermen leave with the tides each morning to haul and reset their traps, and neighbors gather each night to feast on the catch of the day, Barbara Delinsky's The Summer I Dared is a deeply moving story of the risky but rewarding search for self, a story of survival, and of the irrepressible ability of the human spirit to rebound from disaster and to create life anew.

Reviews (4)

The summer I dared

Written by Annie Frederick on January 10th, 2008

  • Book Rating: 3/5

I thought the book was very interesting even though the 2nd half of disc 2 was not able to heard because of the condition of the tape. It really did take away from the story line. I think had I been able to hear all of the book I possibly could have rated it with more knowledge.

The Summer I dared

Written by Anonymous on December 7th, 2007

  • Book Rating: 5/5

This was very interesting. It is about a woman unsatisfied with her life, who does something about it.

The Summer I Dared

Written by Anonymous on March 22nd, 2005

  • Book Rating: 3/5

An OK read. Predictable and a little thin in content. A reasonably good look at the life a women who needed to and wanted to make some drastic changes in her life but quite superficial in its approach. A good book to bring to the beach for light reading and minimal thinking or concentration required.

Summer I Dared

Written by Anonymous on January 28th, 2005

  • Book Rating: 4/5

Better than most novels I have heard, but a little too unrealistic -- how could anyone be a doormat and miserable for so long and just go along with it? Then, out of the blue, her knight in shining armour . . . What was really going on? The heroine enjoyed a comfortable and unstressful lifestyle. Then, when her daughter left the nest, her attention went inward. She realized she was not getting enough attention. Granted her husband was "messing around" on her, but, she must have been such a BORE, who wouldn't? Anyway, she ran off and started over with another man, all fresh and new. Everybody knows that we all settle back down with the same "issues" mostly every time. In real life, she will be in the same rut in just a matter of time. Why? Because she wants to depend on somebody else to make her life meaningful instead of herself. Lazy woman.

Author Details

Author Details

Delinsky, Barbara

"Personal bios are really hard to write for those of us who make a living dramatizing bios for pretend people. Anything I write about me feels totally boring. But it is what it is. So here goes.

I was born and raised in suburban Boston. My mother's death, when I was eight, was the defining event of a childhood that was otherwise ordinary. I took piano lessons and flute lessons. I took ballroom dancing lessons. I went to summer camp through my fifteenth year (in Maine, which explains the setting of so many of my stories), then spent my sixteenth summer learning to type and to drive (two skills that have served me better than all of my other high school courses combined). I earned a B.A. in Psychology at Tufts University and an M.A. in Sociology at Boston College. The motivation behind the M.A. was sheer greed. My husband was just starting law school. We needed the money.

Oh. Oh. Back up. You'll love this. When I was in high school, I was kicked out of Honors English because I couldn't keep up! No, I never did go back to gloat. The truth is that though I came from a family of lawyers and never dreamed of publishing books, I did learn the basics of writing in high school, and, yeah, that skill has come in handy, too.

Following graduate school, I worked as a researcher with the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, and as a photographer and reporter for the Belmont Herald. I did the newspaper work after my first son was born. Since I was heavily into taking pictures of him, I worked for the paper to support that habit. Initially, I wrote only in a secondary capacity, to provide copy for the pictures I took. In time, I realized that I was better at writing than photography. I used both skills doing volunteer work for hospital groups, and have served on the Board of Directors of the Friends of the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center and on the MGH's Women's Cancer Advisory Board.

I became an actual writer by fluke. My twins were four when, by chance, I happened on a newspaper article profiling three female writers. Intrigued, I spent three months researching, plotting, and writing my own book - and it sold.

My niche? I write about the emotional crises that we face in our lives. Readers identify with my characters. They know them. They are them. I'm an everyday woman writing about everyday people facing not-so-everyday challenges.

My novels are character-driven studies of marriage, parenthood, sibling rivalry, and friendship, and I've been blessed in having readers who buy them eagerly enough to put them on the major bestseller lists. My newest hardcover, Family Tree, is out in February, 2007. My next, The Secret Between Us, will be released in 2008. God willing, there'll be another in 2009 and another in 2010.

2010? Yikes. I didn't think I'd live that long. I thought I'd die of breast cancer back in the twentieth century, like my mom. But I didn't. I was diagnosed twelve years ago, had surgery and treatment, and here I am, stronger than ever and loving having authored yet another book, this one the non-fiction Uplift: Secrets From the Sisterhood of Breast Cancer Survivors. First published in 2001, Uplift is a handbook of practical tips and upbeat anecdotes that I compiled with the help of 350 breast cancer survivors, their families and friends. These survivors just ... blew me away! They gave me the book that I wish I'd had way back when I was diagnosed. There is no medical information here, nothing frightening, simply practical advice from friends who've had breast cancer. The 5th Anniversary Volume of Uplift is now in print. And the money I've made on the book? Every cent has gone to my charitable foundation, which funds an ongoing research fellowship at Massachusetts General Hospital. Wow. Does it get any better than that?"