This book’s prologue starts out with a bang as we learn about Lily-Mae and Caroline, two sisters, dropped off at the poorhouse by their mother, never to be seen again.
Summer at Hideaway Key begins in the present and tells the story of Lily, a fashion designer who heads home upon the death of her father. When she finds out he left her a summer cottage previously belonging to her aunt, Lily-Mae, on the beach in Hideaway Key, she jumps at the chance to head to the coast of Florida to find out the reason. She arrives to boxes, mementos, and scraps of her deceased aunt’s life, which she is determined to unravel. As she finds her aunt’s journals, Lily starts to read of her unfortunate childhood and family secrets begin to break apart.
Then she meets next-door neighbor Dean, an architect determined to purchase the cottage in order to build a larger home on the land. As they start to spend more time together, Lily is torn about whether to let her past “No complications” lifestyle influence her feelings for him.
Fans of Orphan Train will appreciate the story told through Lily-Mae’s journal entries. The switching in time from the past to the present is a style reminiscent of Diane Chamberlain and Sarah Jio and begs to be read by their fans.
While this book can easily be classified as a beach read, there is so much substance to the story and such heartbreaking revelations that you’ll be engrossed no matter what the season. I couldn’t wait to get back to Lily-Mae’s childhood and find out how her choices affected her niece’s in the present day.
I am now eagerly looking forward to picking up Barbara Davis’ earlier novels because the story made me long for summers walking along the beach, having drinks in the sun with friends, all with a little romance thrown in.
Thanks to Berkley for the book in exchange for an honest review.
Caryn Strean is a mom by day and reader by night. Asking her to name her favorite book is like asking her to choose a favorite child. Her friends call her The Book Whisperer. Caryn can be reached on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.
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