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Distant Shores: A Novel [Kindle Edition]

Kristin Hannah
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (205 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $7.99
Kindle Price: $5.99
You Save: $2.00 (25%)
Sold by: Random House LLC

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Book Description

Elizabeth and Jackson Shore married young, raised two daughters, and weathered the storms of youth as they built a family. From a distance, their lives look picture perfect. But after the girls leave home, Jack and Elizabeth quietly drift apart. When Jack accepts a wonderful new job, Elizabeth puts her own needs aside to follow him across the country. Then tragedy turns Elizabeth’s world upside down. In the aftermath, she questions everything about her life—her choices, her marriage, even her long-forgotten dreams. In a daring move that shocks her husband, friends, and daughters, she lets go of the woman she has become—and reaches out for the woman she wants to be.

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Having found her audience with Summer Island and On Mystic Lake, Hannah returns with another second-chance-at-love story, this one as bleak as the soggy Pacific Northwest setting. Perimenopausal former artist Elizabeth Shore is feeling lost and miserable these days, as daughters Jamie and Stephanie matriculate at Georgetown and husband Jack focuses on jump-starting his stalled sports broadcasting career. So Elizabeth, tellingly nicknamed "Birdie," compulsively redecorates her empty nest and pesters Jack with lugubrious questions about what's wrong with their lives. Then Jack scores a journalistic coup, and in his implausibly meteoric return to broadcasting glory, winds up in an efficiency apartment in New York City, halfheartedly fending off the advances of both a nubile assistant and a Hollywood bombshell. Meanwhile, back in rainy Oregon, Birdie grieves for her beloved late father, joins a support group for "passionless" women, starts to paint again and talks to herself in the self-help homilies Hannah favors ("No more cheerleader years for me. I need to get in the game"). She even has a rapprochement with newly widowed stepmother Anita, who, in a particularly explosive burst of character development, somehow transforms from a tacky Southern "Bette Midler on speed" to a white-haired sylph favoring "long, flowing" white dresses. (When Birdie finds her bliss, she discovers she's miraculously lost weight.) Hannah's tried-and-true formula includes the predictable happy ending, complete with life lessons tearfully learned, but only hardcore fans will make it to the last page of this dreary soap.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

From Summer Island to On Mystic Lake to Distant Shores, best-selling author Hannah seems to walk on water. Here, as Elizabeth packs up the beach house after her father's death, she comes to realize that her own marriage is all washed up.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1643 KB
  • Print Length: 342 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0345469372
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books; 1st edition (July 16, 2002)
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000FA64R8
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,443 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
36 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful, soul-searching novel July 23, 2002
Jack and Elizabeth "Birdie" Shore are at a crossroads. After 24 years of marriage, they have raised two beautiful girls and withered the storm of Jack's rise and fall as a football star and his addiction to pain killers. Now Jack's career as a sportscaster is rising, and on the outside, everything looks perfect. But Elizabeth feels she is losing herself. She has raised her children, lifted Jack when he stumbled, and forgiven him for the times he strayed earlier in their marriage. She gave up her dream of becoming a painter because she thought that was what she was supposed to do. But when he beloved father dies suddenly, she realizes how empty her life truly is. And when Jack takes a job that will take him to New York, Elizabeth, for the first time, doesn't follow him and remains in Oregon, hoping to find what will give her her own identity.
Distant Shores is a wonderful, soul searching novel about two people who have lost their way. They're not bad people, and they haven't done terrible things. They still love each other, but as times change and they become different people, they wonder if they love each other enough. Few writers get to the heart of this as well as Kristin Hannah. You will sympathize with both Jack and Elizabeth, understand both their points of view, and hope they will find their way back to each other before it's too late. Very highly recommended.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Story of a Stale Marriage December 26, 2002
Yes, it happens, and this author gets just a whole lot of it EXACTLY right. I do wish I could have LIKED Elizabeth (Birdie) Shore a little better, "poor little misunderstood rich girl" comes to mind here, though. The Jackson Shore character really didn't have much depth to him beyond himself and his beloved sports. Did he ever really "get it"? Some of the women characters were richly sketched, and the daughters were artfully portrayed as a study in contrasts. The setting on the Oregon coast was well detailed and occasionally breathtaking but does it match the rather tropical looking cover of the book? Just a lot of bits and pieces that did not work for me - the single handed destruction of the dining room wall being one of them. Some of the rough language seems to come from no where and seems unnecessary and a bit trite. Not a favorite book, but Ms. Hannah does have an interesting spin on the staleness of a marriage, what makes a family, and finding yourself again.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Just walk away.... April 13, 2012
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I am so grateful I picked this up used for only $2. Cannot believe how much I hated this book. The story is weak and the characters are just plain gross. What can I say. First, Elizabeth is about as boring and shallow a character as you can imagine. She gave up her dream of being a painter to be a good wife and mother and follow hubby, Jack, around the country while he pursued his dream and, I gather, pretty much jumped on any little ole thing that crossed his path. Ick. And natch, when Elizabeth decides she needs a break so that she can figure out what to do with her empty and unhappy life, Jack can't keep it in his pants for a few measly months in spite of being devastated by the loss of Elizabeth's love and their family. As if all of that wasn't bad enough, the ending was stupid. I'm sorry, there is no other word for it. Stupid. Elizabeth and Jack decide they can live happily ever after and all it takes is Elizabeth following Jack to NYC, enrolling in graduate school, and Jack feeling bad for sleeping with his assistant during the separation.Oh yeah, Jack doesn't tell Elizabeth when they reconcile about his little dalliance with his assistant. So is it just me, but doesn't that seem like kind of a critical piece of information to share if you're trying to start fresh. I cannot imagine that at some point in the future it is not coming back to bite someone in the tush. Man, I seriously just wanted to slap these two people silly and say, get a life, grow up, and quit whining.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book is exactly what I needed. August 22, 2002
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I'm feeling a lot of the same things that Elizabeth (our heroin) went through. I am on the back burner. I'm still raising my children (13 yrs. & 2 yrs) and I have been married for 14 1/2 years. We were married at 19.
My children come first (that will always remain), then my husband, and finally me.
Like Elizabeth, I was feeling like I didn't matter very much. I don't work out of my home, so I felt that my needs are not as important.
After reading this book, I realized that I am a person of my own. I became my own mother and I was feeling unhappy. I DO matter and I have dreams worth following and fighting for.
I see that it's too easy to loose yourself. I'm only 33 and already I couldn't see myself in the mirror.
Thank you Ms. Hannah, I'm learning to find my voice again, and the spunky girl my husband fell in love with.
I love this book.
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Ho Hum June 1, 2005
Format:Audio Cassette
Maybe I would have liked this book better if I had not suffered through the egregious unabridged audio, with singularly untalented reader Bernadette Quigley, who, throughout the entire book, put her inflections on the wrong words as though she were reciting by rote rather than looking at what she was reading. Example, "Thank you," Elizabeth SAID.

Once having gotten used to that weirdness, one is blown away by the plethora of cliches contained in only one small book. Middle-aged woman faces empty nest and boredom in her marriage. Husband wants something more. Wife wants to "find herself." College-age bratty daughters want mom and dad to stay together forever so they feel secure.

The middle-aged wife, Elizabeth, was once a promising painter, but of course she got married and gave up painting and yada yada yada...husband Jack was once a star quarterback, but "blew out his knee" and got addicted to painkillers, so now he's a third-string TV commentator in Oregon. He yearns to be back in the bigtime. Yawn. Daughters are polar opposites, but both at Georgetown University, sharing a room (as if!!). Back in Tennessee, Elizabeth's Daddy is almost a mockery of grade C Southern Tobacco Grower movies. Stepmother Anita has piled up hair and high heeled shoes and Elizabeth hates her.

Enough. This is probably an OK book to read on a boring plane ride or better yet, when stuck in the airport. But don't expect a single original thought or word.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Nice story
Easy read
Published 2 days ago by Joan Hinterseer
5.0 out of 5 stars distant shores
You makes me want to remember a dream and go catch it. So often when get tied up in life and forget what really matters. Good book
Published 2 days ago by Grayce E. Freeman
4.0 out of 5 stars Appreciate the life you've been given
The book was interesting causing one to reflect on relationships.
How much we take for granted & loss of identity are taken for granted.
Published 3 days ago by linda f.
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Very good
Published 3 days ago by Floralea Huffman
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Read
Great read! Enjoyed this book! Such human reality written into the story line! Would highly recommend it !
Published 11 days ago by Denise Townsend
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Lover her Books
Published 12 days ago by marie mac
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it~
Received it on time and have read it already. Really good book as all of hers are.
Published 25 days ago by Broncomom
3.0 out of 5 stars Not my favorite
I've read many Kristin Hannah books, Night Road being my favorite, this one my least favorite so far, but still a decent read.
Published 29 days ago by Trish
2.0 out of 5 stars *Spoiler Alert* .... readable but flawed....
This book was all over the place. Just when you think Elizabeth doesn't love Jack, she's telling Jack she loves him. Ditto for Jack... who, BTW, cheats on his wife...again. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Annie E.
4.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous. Moving. Thought provoking
This book really struck a chord in my heart and soul for I am going through this same thing in my life and marriage. It was very helpful to reach into my heart and soul. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Kathy
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More About the Author

Kristin Hannah is an award-winning and bestselling author of more than 20 novels including Winter Garden, Night Road, and the blockbuster Firefly Lane which sold over 1.2 million copies.

Her novels Home Front and Night Road were among the first novels to appear in the #1 spot on 5 New York Times bestseller lists simultaneously. Home Front has been optioned for film by 1492 Films (produced the Oscar-nominated The Help) with Chris Columbus attached to write, produce, and direct.

Kristin's highly anticipated new release, The Nightingale, will be published on February 3, 2015 (St. Martin's Press). The novel --an epic love story and family drama set in France at the dawn of World War II--is a profound and compelling portrait of two estranged sisters, living in a city under siege and a country at war, where sometimes surviving means doing the unthinkable.

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