The Cliff House by RaeAnne Thayne is the first book that I have read by her that wasn’t a part of her Haven Point series. Her Haven Point series is what has made Thayne an auto-read author for me. I love her small town contemporary romances and I wanted to see what she would bring to the table when it came to diving into the lives of three very different women.
Stella, Daisy, and Beatriz had a traumatic period of their lives about 20 years prior to the setting of The Cliff House. All three had come out the other side changed by it. It was fascinating for me to watch the three women come to terms with what happened and the ripple effects for years afterwards. It actually took me about 50 pages to be invested and about 100 pages to be completely wrapped up in it. Once I was there I finished the remainder of The Cliff House in one sitting. I HAD to finish it.
Thayne takes her time setting the stage but the pay off is absolutely worth the build up. It’s actually pretty similar to the healing process. It takes time to face the hurt and even more time to learn how to deal with the hurt. We walk through some of that healing with Stella, Daisy, and Bea. The Cliff House isn’t strictly about healing though. There were some light points in the book to balance out some of the heavy stuff.
I mostly identified with Daisy in this story. I too am the oldest and oldest children seem to be so much more serious than younger siblings. Not only that but Daisy seems like the kind of character who fears good things happening to her because she’s always waiting for the other shoe to drop and balance it back out again. This is very much my brand of anxiety. It isn’t fun and it always makes you feel doubly awful because why can’t you just feel blessed that something good has come your way for once? So yeah, I really identified with her and was cheering loudly from the sidelines for her.
To borrow a simile from Shrek: RaeAnne Thayne has an onion in The Cliff House. There are so many layers. Each layer adds flavor to the book. I laughed, I cried, I hurt with the women, and I rejoiced with them too. I berated them for not seeing things the way I (as the reader) saw them and felt like cheering when they figured it out! In other words, I was emotionally involved in this one folks. Thayne has sealed the deal as an auto-read author for me. I’ll give her writing a shot no matter what she decides to put out there!
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