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Get answers to all your questions about Elin Hilderbrand’s series here. This post shares which Elin Hilderbrand books are part of a series, what they are about, in what order to read them, and more. You’ll get answers to all your questions so you can have the best reading experience of the “Queen of the Beach Reads.” Let’s get literary!

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Quick Guide to Elin Hilderbrand’s Book Series

Elin Hilderbrand has written three book series.

Some of Elin Hilderbrand’s books also have short story prequels and sequels; however, they are not considered to be a book series.

Nantucket Series

  1. A Summer Affair (2008)
  2. The Castaways (2009)
  3. The Perfect Couple (2018)
  4. Swan Song (2024)

Winter Series

  1. Winter Street (2014)
  2. Winter Stroll (2015)
  3. Winter Storms (2016)
  4. Winter Solstice (2017)

Paradise Series

  1. Winter in Paradise (2018)
  2. What Happens in Paradise (2019) 
  3. Troubles in Paradise (2020)

Short Story and Novel Pairings

  1. The Surfing Lesson (prequel short story) for Beautiful Day (novel)
  2. The Tailgate (prequel short story) and The Matchmaker (novel)
  3. Summer of ’69 (novel) and Summer of ’79 (sequel short story)
  4. 28 Summers (novel) and The Sixth Wedding (sequel short story)

Details of Elin Hilderbrand’s Book Series

A Summer Affair (2008; my review: ★★☆☆☆) is about a dramatic affair that occurs behind the scenes of a charitable summer gala between a married mother and her high school ex.

The Castaways (2009; my review: ★★★☆☆) is a beachy mystery about a group of Nantucket couples who are friends holding secrets involving their relationships with each other, which come to light after one of the couples tragically dies.

The Perfect Couple (2018; one of the best Elin Hilderbrand books; my review: ★★★★★) is a juicy and indulgent “death at a wedding” mystery investigated by the Police Chief of Nantucket. It offers some surprising plot twists.

Swan Song (2024; Elin Hilderbrand’s last book; my review: ★★★★★) is a deliciously over-the-top romantic mystery about a house fire and missing worker that brings back the Police Chief and involves the friends group from The Castaways.


  • While it’s technically best to read the Nantucket series in order of publication to avoid spoilers, you don’t “have to.” I read it out of order myself, and I didn’t even notice it was a series! The series has many character crossovers, but it does not follow one continuous plot.

Winter Street (2014; my review: ★★★★☆) introduces the reader to the Nantucket Winter Street Inn, owned by the Quinn family patriarch and father of four adult children, Kelley. His second wife, Mitzi, has kissed Santa Claus, leaving his first wife, news anchor Margaret Quinn, to try to save Christmas.

Meanwhile, the oldest Quinn child, Patrick, is a hedge fund manager dealing with a white-collar crime. Bartender Kevin has a secret relationship with the Inn’s housekeeper. Teacher Ava can’t get her dream boyfriend to commit, and Bart, the youngest, is fighting overseas in the Marines.

Winter Stroll (2015; my review: ★★★☆☆) picks up during the following Christmas season, particularly during Nantucket’s Christmas Stroll. But, all is not as happy-go-lucky as it may seem. Without giving away any spoilers, it’s a super quick read that keeps the storylines moving along while also looking forward to what may happen next Christmas.

In Winter Storms (2016; my review: ★★★☆☆), a blizzard threatens a happy day for the Quinn family this Christmas. Meanwhile, some of the other members of the Quinn family continue to struggle with major life issues.

Winter Solstice (2017; my review: ★★★☆☆) concludes the Winter series with both great joy in the ending of one of the family member’s storylines, as well as sorrow in light of the health crisis of another.


  • The Winter series of books are best read in order since they follow a continuous storyline with major plot spoilers.
  • They make for a memorable holiday reading experience, especially if you enjoy the ups and downs of family drama and/or a festive New England setting.

Winter in Paradise (2018; my review: ★★★☆☆) begins in the new year when Irene Steele learns that her husband was killed in a helicopter crash on the Caribbean island of St. John. She and her sons jet to St. John and become even more shocked when they learn the man they loved had been living a secret dual life.

What Happens in Paradise (2019; my review: ★★★☆☆) picks up shortly thereafter, when Irene and her sons return to St. John. They become more entangled in the lives of the islanders and discover more questions surrounding the Steele patriarch’s mysterious life and death.

In Troubles in Paradise (2020) Irene is settled back in her husband’s villa in St. John, when the FBI delivers shocking news about him that makes his death seem all the more mysterious until the conclusion is finally revealed.


  • The Paradise series of books are best read in order as they follow a continuous storyline. They are great for fans of beachy mysteries, family drama, and a Caribbean setting.
  • They make for a slight change of pace for those who love Elin Hilderbrand’s books but also want to read something a bit different than her most notorious themes, character types, and settings.

Details of Elin Hilderbrand’s Short Stories and Novel Pairings

I mentioned earlier that some of Elin Hilderbrand’s books also have short story prequels and sequels. However, they are not considered to be an Elin Hilderbrand book series. I’ll call them “pairings.”

The Surfing Lesson is a short story about the background of Beautiful Day‘s (my review: ★★★★☆) somewhat less central character, Margot Carmichael. It was published just before the novel Beautiful Day, so you can read these stories in whatever order you wish.

The Tailgate is a short story that tells the backstory of Dabney Kimball and Clendenin (“Clen”) Hughes from The Matchmaker. It was published just before the novel, The Matchmaker, which centers on both of these characters, so you can read these stories in whatever order you wish.

The short story Summer of ’79 (my review: ★★★☆☆)is a sequel that should only be read after the novel Summer of ’69 (my review: ★★★★★), and it tells where all the members of the Levin family ended up ten years later.

The short story The Sixth Wedding (my review: ★★★☆☆) is a sequel that should only be read after the novel 28 Summers (my review: ★★★★★), bringing Melanie’s brother and the other main characters back to Nantucket five years later.

Endless Summer is a collection of all of the short stories mentioned above in this article plus more. It would be great to keep on your shelf and pull out when you’re reading one of her related books or to devour at once after you finish all of the long-form Elin Hilderbrand books.

About Elin Hilderbrand


Elin Hilderbrand is one of the most famous book authors today. A Pennsylvania native and graduate of Johns Hopkins University, she also attended the University of Iowa writers workshop and earned a Master of Fine Arts degree.

Notably, she has three children, lives on Nantucket island (which often serves as the setting for her beachy romance novels), is a breast cancer survivor, and has a twin brother.

She planned to retire after her 30th book, Swan Song, is released on June 11, 2024. However, she has already signed a deal to co-author two books set at a New England boarding school with her daughter, Shelby Cunningham.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Elin Hilderbrand have a series?

Yes. Elin Hilderbrand has three book series: Nantucket (a four-book series set on Nantucket), Winter Street (a four-book series about Christmas on Nantucket), and Paradise (a trilogy set on St. John). Some of Elin Hilderbrand’s books also have short story prequels and sequels; however, they are not considered to be a book series.

What are the three books in the Elin Hilderbrand trilogy?

Elin Hilderbrand’s Paradise trilogy includes Winter in Paradise, What Happens in Paradise, and Troubles in Paradise.

Do you have to read the Nantucket series in order?

No. While it is best practice to read Elin Hilderbrand’s Nantucket series in order of publication to avoid spoilers, each book can alternatively be read as a standalone novel read in any order.


These important details of Elin Hilderbrand’s book series help you plan and track your guilty pleasure beach reading beyond just one book. To recap, Elin Hilderbrand has three book series:

  1. Nantucket: a series of four books set during summer on Nantucket
  2. Winter: a series of four books set during Christmas on Nantucket
  3. Paradise: a trilogy of three books set during Winter on St. John

Some of Elin Hilderbrand’s novels also have short story prequels and sequels; however, they are not considered to be a book series.

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