‘Same Beach, Next Year’ Is Unrepentently Hilarious and Heartfelt [REVIEW]

Two empty deck chairs on the beach

One magical summer, two families begin a friendship that will last more than 20 years. (Photo by Richard Walker, Flickr)

Whenever I pick up one of Dottie Frank’s books, I know I’m in for a treat. Filled with humor, sass and plenty of snark, it is almost as if my favorite characters from Steel Magnolias regularly get together to write stories they would love to read, populated with characters they would easily get along with. And that’s exactly the type of story Same Beach, Next Year delivers, one that exudes Southern charm, invites you in to sit a spell, drink sweet tea and catch up with folks you can’t help but adore. 

Dorothea Benton Frank's SAME BEACH, NEXT YEAR

William Morrow

In this case readers get to catch up on the lives of friends Adam, Eliza, Eve, and Carl. These two couples have been inseparable for nearly two decades and have seen it all, from big laughs to tragedy and unimaginable heartbreak. But let’s start at the beginning. Adam, Eliza and their boys are on vacation on the Isle of Palms when a chance encounter throws former sweethearts Adam and Eve back together again. As their spouses, Eliza and Carl, try to swallow their jealousy, they inevitably wind up flirting shamelessly as the two couples get to know one another and forge a friendship that lasts a lifetime.

If you’re afraid this sounds like a sordid tale, you need not worry. It’s not. But it is one of the funniest books I have read in ages. As we get to know these four people, we realize (or I did anyway) that we seem to know several folks just like them. The scene where they all share cocktails for the very first time had me laughing out loud, not only because Eliza and Carl reveled in their bawdy humor, but because Adam and Eliza’s two sons are so darn precocious they will have every adult simultaneously cringing and laughing at their antics.

Same Beach, Next Year is a story about what it takes to keep a friendship alive. It also celebrates the rich heritage of the Carolina Lowcountry, and makes us all wish for gorgeous beaches and languid summer days. Most of all, Franks makes us wish we all were lucky enough to have friends like this, people who stick together through thick and thin, who teach us about love, and who nurture our souls no matter the circumstances.

Do yourself a favor. Toss this one in your beach bag this summer. You’re going to want to kick off your flip flops, pull your big hat down low, and give yourself over to the incredible storytelling prowess of one of our finest authors writing today. Same Beach, Next Year is destined to become one of your favorite reads this year.


Dorothea Benton Frank

Dorothea Benton Frank
(Photo by Debbie Zammit)

Dorothea Benton Frank is the New York Times bestselling author of All Summer LongThe Last Original WifePorch Lights, and Folly BeachHer first novel, Sullivans Island, was published in 2000 and debuted at number nine on the New York Times bestseller list.

Prior to becoming a bestselling author, she had a career in the retail apparel industry and worked for companies like Fire Islander Sportswear, Heralcorp Industries and Michael Lerner in New York City; Byer California in San Francisco; Kerrison’s Department Store in Charleston, S.C., and College Town Sportswear in Atlanta, Ga.

She is the recipient of an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from The College of Charleston and a Doctorate of Fine Arts from Bloomfield College. In 1972, she graduated from the Fashion Institute of America in Atlanta, Ga. and from General William Moultrie High School in 1969.

When she isn’t working, Frank can be found cooking, fly fishing, reading and traveling. Born and raised on Sullivans Island, S.C., she currently makes her home in the New York area with her husband. Visit her home on the Web, like her on Facebook, and follow her on Twitter and Instagram.

By Dorothea Benton Frank
384 pgs. William Morrow. $27.99

You may purchase this book at one of these fine online retailers: HarperCollins, Amazon, and Barnes & Noble.

Same Beach, Next Year is brought to you in association with TLC Book Tours.

TLC Book Tours Tour Host

About Jathan Fink
Jathan is a journalist, philanthropist, and entrepreneur. He is also a travel junkie, foodie and jazz aficionado. A California native, he resides in Texas.

2 Responses to ‘Same Beach, Next Year’ Is Unrepentently Hilarious and Heartfelt [REVIEW]

  1. Pingback: Same Beach Next Year by Dorothea Frank Review + Book Club Questions

  2. Jathan Fink says:

    Reblogged this on Jadeworks Entertainment and commented:

    There are few things that say summer like visits with old friends, sunbathing on a gorgeous stretch of beach, and the arrival of a new novel by the Queen of Southern Sass, Dorothea Benton Frank. Get ready to lose yourself in her hilarious new book, Same Beach, Next Year. You’ll love it!

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