Review: The Cousins by Karen M. McManus

The CousinsThe Cousins by Karen M. McManus
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

**3.5-stars rounded up**

The wealthy Story family is practically royalty on Gull Cove Island, a remote vacation destination off Cape Cod in Massachusetts.

They own the largest resort on the island and everyone knows them. Twenty-five years ago, the family matriarch, Mildred, suddenly disowned her four children, essentially banishing them from the island.

These children are now adults and three of them have children of their own. Aubrey, Jonah and Milly, although cousins, hardly know each other, having only met a handful of times.

Seemingly out of the blue, all three Story grandchildren receive invitations from the Grandmother they have never met, to travel to the island for the summer and work at the Gull Cove Resort.

All three teens think that this sounds like a terrible way to spend the summer, but they aren’t really given an option.

Their parents see this as a chance to get back in Grandma’s good graces and possibly back into an inheritance. Money, as we know, can be a strong motivator.

The cousins meet aboard the ferry to the island and begrudgingly begin to get to know one another.

Before they know it, two hours has gone by, the ferry is docking and their summer of scandal has officially begun!

As to be expected with a novel by Karen M. McManus, this was full of twists and turns the entire way through.

The over-the-top drama was compelling and I was so into finding out all of the Story family’s deepest secrets. There was a lot to unpack.

Milly, Aubrey and Jonah were each unique, with their own insecurities and hang-ups. I liked how their relationships evolved over the course of the story, as they began to work together to get to the bottom of why their parents got disowned.

In addition to the current timeline, there was also a past perspective following Milly’s Mom, Allison, in the summer leading up to their being disinherited. Eventually, it all pieces together into a more than startling conclusion.

This is a super quick read and I had a lot of fun with it. What’s not to love about a remote seaside setting, a possible inheritance, decades old family secrets and rich people drama?

Incidentally, I live on a remote island off of Cape Cod in Massachusetts, so can attest to the setting being well done. I loved that McManus even used the actual name of the ferry company that services our island.

Details like that made me feel connected right away.

I am so glad that I finally got around to picking this one up and now can anxiously anticipate her next release, You’ll Be the Death of Me!

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