Mustique Island: A Novel
“A sun-kissed mother-daughter story set against the backdrop of the titular private island.”
—PopSugar’s Most Anticipated Books of 2022
From bestselling author Sarah McCoy, a sun-splashed romp with a rich divorcée and her two wayward daughters in 1970s Mustique, the world’s most exclusive private island, where Princess Margaret and Mick Jagger were regulars and scandals stayed hidden from the press.
It’s January 1972 but the sun is white hot when Willy May Michael’s boat first kisses the dock of Mustique Isle. Tucked into the southernmost curve of the Caribbean, Mustique is a private island that has become a haven for the wealthy and privileged. Its owner is the eccentric British playboy Colin Tennant, who is determined to turn this speck of white sand into a luxurious neo-colonial retreat for his rich friends and into a royal court in exile for the Queen’s rebellious sister, Princess Margaret—one where Her Royal Highness can skinny dip, party, and entertain lovers away from the public eye.
Willy May, a former beauty queen from Texas—who is also no stranger to marital scandals—seeks out Mustique for its peaceful isolation. Determined to rebuild her life and her relationships with her two daughters, Hilly, a model, and Joanne, a musician, she constructs a fanciful white beach house across the island from Princess Margaret—and finds herself pulled into the island’s inner circle of aristocrats, rock stars, and hangers-on.
When Willy May’s daughters arrive, they discover that beneath its veneer of decadence, Mustique has a dark side, and like sand caught in the undertow, their mother-daughter story will shift and resettle in ways they never could have imagined.
Praise for Mustique Island: A Novel
“If you’ve ever wanted to slip into a picture by Slim Aarons, renowned photographer of elites on continuous vacations, now is your chance. McCoy’s gorgeous novel takes place on the Caribbean island of Mustique in the 1970s, a getaway for Princess Margaret.” — Washington Post, a Noteworthy Book pick for May
"Historical fiction lovers will luxuriate in a trip to Mustique Island, Sarah McCoy’s latest novel about a 1970s enclave, and a mother and her daughters who find their new beginnings there. McCoy’s created a big-hearted, enchanting gem." — Laura Dave, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Last Thing He Told Me
"I am utterly charmed by the characters, the writing, the sunshine, and the way Sarah McCoy seamlessly blends fact and fiction. Mustique Island is an immersive delight and a welcome ray of light." — Jane Green, New York Times bestselling author of Sister Stardust
“Glamorous, scandalous, and wholly immersive in a way that will keep you turning pages long after the sun has set, Mustique Island is a captivating story of mothers and daughters told with adventurous spirit and heart. Toss this in your beach bag and your summer reading is set.”
— Steven Rowley, bestselling author of The Guncle
"Though sun-drenched and frequently frothy, McCoy’s...underlying tale of women-in-crisis who claw their way back to strength carries sobering messages about the importance of family loyalty and resiliency." — Booklist
"Readers will embrace Sarah McCoy's heartfelt, thoughtful story of mothers and daughters, desire and identity amid the circus life of Mustique Island that asks the questions: what do we owe one another, and what do we owe ourselves?" — Therese Anne Fowler, bestselling author of A Good Neighborhood
"As soon as I opened this gorgeous novel and sailed with Willie May to the picture-perfect island of Mustique, I was entranced. A moving exploration of the bonds of love and motherhood, Mustique Island is my new favorite Sarah McCoy novel...and the best book I've read this year. Pair this novel with a Pink Lady cocktail--made with roselle hibiscus, ginger, and cloves--for a blissful, literary escape." — Amanda Ward, New York Times bestselling author of The Jetsetters