The Vacationers by Emma Straub

The Vacationers
The Vacationers
Emma Straub


This entertaining book is a light beach read about the dysfunctional Post family, on a trip from Manhattan to Mallorca, Spain for some forced family vacation fun, a two-week trip to a beautiful island home on top of a mountain.

Franny and Jim Post are in crisis, despite thirty-five years of marriage.  Their daughter, Sylvia is off to college in the fall.  She has a few crucial things to check off her list before the summer is out and her handsome Spanish tutor may be able to help her with that.  Joining the group from Miami are Sylvia’s brother, 28-year-old Bobby and his older-woman girlfriend, Carmen.  Bobby and Carmen have their own problems and they may not be able to keep them under wraps in Mallorca.  Rounding out the group is Franny’s long-time friend Charles and his new husband Lawrence.  Lawrence already feels like an outsider.  Can he tolerate the intense friendship between Charles and Franny?

Everyone has issues, there is plenty of tension and the Wi-Fi in the house stinks.  Franny, despite being furious with Jim, tries to keep it together by organizing day trips and cooking elaborate meals.

As the days wear on, some relationships improve, but others worsen and one or two implode.  On a trip to the beach, it looks as if the vacation will end in disaster.  Can anything be salvaged?

I thoroughly enjoyed this entertaining story.  It is perfect for the summer and I was in just the right mood to read something fun.  While the characters are simply drawn and the plot is predictable, Straub adds her own style to the dialogue and her characters’ points of view.  I was surprised to see it got very mixed reviews on Amazon, but I’m sticking with my four bookmarks!

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