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Library Journal Review
Winter Storms was supposed to conclude the Quinn family story, but Hilderbrand has happily written a fourth installment with the Pancik family from The Rumor making appearances, too. As the Quinns gather on Nantucket at the Winter Street Inn for what may be a final reunion there, Kelly is nearing the end of his battle with brain cancer and Mitzi is considering selling the inn. Bart has returned a war hero but is struggling with depression and PTSD. Still, a chance at love gives him hope. Ava is finding success and love in New York City, while Patrick and Jennifer rebuild their lives. VERDICT Devotees of Hilderbrand's Nantucket-based family saga will find this final "Winter" novel a must-read holiday indulgence. [See Prepub Alert, 4/10/17.] © Copyright 2017. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Publishers Weekly Review
Hilderbrand's engaging 20th novel follows the Quinn family and their loved ones as patriarch Kelley Quinn succumbs to cancer. After he and his first wife, Margaret, divorced, Kelley quit his high-paying trader job and moved their three children from Manhattan to Nantucket. He later married Mitzi, with whom he ran the Winter Street Inn and had a fourth child, Bart. As a child, Kelley and Margaret's daughter Ava clashed with her stepmother. Now that she's grown, Ava turns to Mitzi for advice on how to deal with her boyfriend's difficult son. Meanwhile, after Mitzi and Kelley's Marine son, Bart, went missing as a POW in Afghanistan for two years, he returns home with PTSD. His parents find a ray of hope in 22-year-old Bart's romantic interest in 19-year-old Allegra Pancik. Bart's disgraced decorator sister-in-law, Jennifer, who overcame a pill addiction, ditches a high-paying client after he propositions her sexually, but her family's precarious financial situation requires her to find another gig fast. The clan attempts to navigate their issues as Kelley's situation worsens, and the family must find a way to come together in a time of need. Hilderbrand is an engaging storytelling who keeps the reader riveted, and her characters come alive on the page. Though she's skilled at building up tension, problematic situations are sometimes too easily resolved (for instance, Allegra's love seems to miraculously cure Bart of his PTSD). Readers who enjoy bittersweet family stories will be charmed. (Oct.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
In this somber coda to the Winter Street trilogy (Winter Street, 2014; Winter Stroll, 2015; Winter Storms, 2016), Hilderbrand revisits the lives, loves, and challenges of the Quinn family at the Winter Street Inn. Set during the last three months of the year and peppered with cameo appearances from earlier books in the series, Winter Solstice gives equal weight to threads of hope and despair. Patriarch Kelley is ailing, and his wife, Mitzi, is trying to keep everything together. Kelley's grown children, Kevin, Patrick, and Ava, are living their own lives while maintaining their connection to the inn, and Kelley and Mitzi's son, returned POW Bart, struggles with PTSD. Gathering for a party on Halloween, celebrating the traditional family Thanksgiving, and returning once more on the titular winter solstice, the Quinns come together to support each other in grief and envision a hopeful future.Fans of Hilderbrand will enjoy the return to Nantucket and Winter Street, newcomers will feel right at home, and readers who appreciate a strong sense of place and interesting characters will be well satisfied.--Moroni, Alene Copyright 2018 Booklist
Kirkus Book Review
Fourth in Hilderbrand's Christmas series about a family-run Nantucket inn.Changes are looming at Winter Street Inn, seemingly portending the end of this Christmas series. Innkeeper Kelley, patriarch of the Quinn family, is in hospice, dying of brain cancer. Kelley's oldest son, Patrick, is struggling to grow a hedge fund after serving time for insider trading. Due to their straitened finances, wife Jennifer, an interior decorator and former addict, hesitates to tell Patrick she lost a sizable account due to a banker client's sexual harassment. Characters from Hilderbrand's recent summer novel, The Rumor (2015), make an appearance: disgraced realtor Eddie Pancik, now out of jail, his wife, Grace, and her erstwhile lover, master landscaper Benton Coe, now returned from temporary exile in Detroit. Kelley's ex-wife, iconic anchorwoman Margaret, is regretting, with near-retirement hindsight, that she allowed his second wife, Mitzi, to raise their three children, Patrick, Kevin, and Ava. A new relationship is working out well for Ava until a visit from her boyfriend Potter's son, PJwho's over-the-top bratty even by today's standardsthreatens to upend everything. Kelley worries about what will happen to Mitzi after he's gone; she has no family except their only child, Bart, a former Marine who suffers from PTSD after two years of imprisonment in Afghanistan. Mitzi is already planning to list the inn for sale with Eddie, and judging how well Nantucket real estate has bounced back from the crash, this promises to replenish the depleted coffers of both. Hilderbrand has quickly put her witty and at times profound stamp on the Christmas genre. In this latest outing, however, the most interesting crises evaporate too soon: Bart's trauma is quickly eased by love at first sight, Jennifer spins addiction dross into reality TV gold, a little FaceTime tames PJ, etc. Perhaps these neatly tied-up plotlines are appropriate at series' endexcept that the ambiguous close suggests the end may not be so near after all. Not for those who prefer tarter holiday fare. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.