Book Review: Ocean Beach by Wendy Wax

Author: Wendy Wax

Publisher: Berkley Trade

ISBN: 978-0425245415

Publish Date: June 26, 2012

Pages:  448 Trade Paperback

Type: Fiction: Women’s

Purchase: $10.20 at


Madeline, Avery and Nicole, the unlikely friends from Ten Beach Road, have hit some speed bumps in their lives, but when they arrive in Miami’s South Beach neighborhood, they are all hoping for a do-over. Literally. They’ve been hired to bring a once-grand historic house back to its former glory on a new television show called Do-Over. A lot hinges on the success of the DIY program. For Nikki, it would mean getting back on her feet financially. For Avery, it’s a chance to restart her ruined career. And Maddie hopes it will give her a shot at keeping her family together.

At least, that’s the plan—until they realize that having their work broadcast is one thing, but having their personal lives play out on TV is another story entirely. Soon they’re struggling to hold themselves and the renovation together, even as a decades-old mystery—and the hurricane season—loom on the horizon, threatening not only the project but everything that’s brought them together.

Excerpt from Ocean Beach


After reading and reviewing Ten Beach Road by Wendy Wax, I was excited at the opportunity to review its sequel, Ocean Beach.  The same delightful cast of characters return along with their supporting characters (mom, baby and boyfriends are in tow).   After completing the renovation of Bella Flora at Ten Beach Road, they were awarded a reality television show in which they renovate other dilapidated, historic homes.  Only this time, Livetime television has a camera crew in place recording their every move.  Their new project is a home named The Millicent in South Beach, Florida which is owned by an old-time comedian, Max, who was famous with his wife back-in-the-day.

Nikki tries her hand at her private match-making services again, all the while she is being pursued by Special Agent Joe Giraldi, the government agent who was involved in capturing Malcolm Dyer.  Maddie’s daughter, Kyra, is faced with the protection of her “love child” with the famous Daniel Deranian from the press.  When Daniel comes to town with his famous wife and adopted children, he wants to meet baby Dustin and it’s up to Kyra to keep this so-called reunion from the cameras and press.  Maddie is also faced with trying to keep her family together as her husband, Steve, makes it very clear that he is not in support of her continuing to work now that he is re-employed and able to support their family.  What Steve doesn’t understand is that this is her passion and she gets a sense of value and  accomplishment from being a part of the project.  Not to mention, Maddie wants to be there for Kyra and baby Dustin.  Avery struggles with living with her mother, Diedre, who has made it her mission to repair their very-damaged relationship.  Avery’s love affair with Chase, the general contractor who she met during the renovation of the last house, continues.  She just wants to ensure that she is able to prove herself as a designer and renovation specialist.

All the ladies continue to bond nightly at sunset and share both their struggles and triumphs.  What’s lovely about this book is the opportunity to join them with a glass of wine after work and read about their adventures!


This is my first 2012 summer read and I have enjoyed my quiet time with a memorable cast of characters and new intriguing plot line.   Like it’s predecessor, Ten Beach Road,  this novel provides dimension to each of the characters and sets forth their inner most desires and fears in the delivery of a great story. For your summer beach-read list, this makes the top 10.

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5 Responses

  1. bermudaonion (Kathy)

    June 29th, 2012 at 3:51 am

    I’m getting ready to start this book today so I’m thrilled to see you liked it so much.
    bermudaonion (Kathy)´s last blog post ..BEA 2012: The Books

  2. Stephanie @ Read in a Single Sitting

    July 1st, 2012 at 7:46 pm

    This one was a really enjoyable read–particularly since it’s winter here! I loved the renovation aspect and Max’s character, although I did find the ending a little over-the-top.
    Stephanie @ Read in a Single Sitting´s last blog post ..Book Review: Ocean Beach by Wendy Wax

  3. Mystica

    July 12th, 2012 at 5:47 am

    Thank you for a very comprehensive review.
    Mystica´s last blog post ..THE WHITE PEARL BY KATE FURNIVAL

  4. Menagerie

    July 18th, 2012 at 7:31 pm

    Stephanie, I agree with your opinion of the ending… a bit dramatic.


  5. Khaleda Najeem Sallade

    September 26th, 2013 at 10:04 pm


    I really enjoy the reading ‘Ocean Beach, it was very nice.

    I personally thanks to Wendy.


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