28 Summers by Elin Hilderband

28 Summers

I’ve been reading Elin Hilderbrand since she first began writing. I fell in love with Nantucket because of Elin. I’ve never set foot on Nantucket but in my mind I’ve been there 28 times. Every summer there is a new novel set on Nantucket Island. And every summer I am there.

A few weeks ago, I was lucky enough to read a review copy of 28 SUMMERS.  I wanted to take my time and savor it but, I ended up swallowing it whole. When I turned the last page and shut the book, I stood up and was dumbfounded to discover that my backyard was not the Atlantic Ocean. I had become so totally immersed in 28 SUMMERS that I actually lost myself for a moment in time. I did not make this up.  When I tell you that this novel is one of the most moving love stories I’ve ever read, I am not kidding. I am not exaggerating. It’s extraordinary.

Elin has used the movie SAME TIME NEXT YEAR as the theme of 28 SUMMERS.  It works. It’s genius. And it’s totally right for this point in time. We need escapism.  And here it is.

Elin Hilderbrand

Love the cover. For me, a great cover is the best way to grab your readers. And this one is a real winner.  The first chapter is numbered Summer#28: 2020. So it’s beginning with the end.  I love the beginning of each chapter where Elin gives us a synopsis of what we were  talking about that particular year. She does it with each summer. It’s so perfect because it sets us up to remember what was going on that year. I love this.  In this poignant last summer Mallory Blessing is telling her son Link that there’s an envelope in the desk.  On the front of the envelope is a message saying only , Please call.   Link is with his mother in her beach cottage on Nantucket. Inside the envelope is one thing: a phone number……We discover that Link’s mom is dying of cancer and he is only nineteen.  And so the story begins

Part One is titled Twenties.  Summer#1: 1993. Here we first meet Mallory Blessing who is twenty-four years old and living on the Upper East Side of New York with her very best friend in the world.  We are reminded at the top of the chapter what is going on in the world: Waco, Texas; World Trade Center bombing; Arthur Ashe; R.E.M.; Lorena Bobbitt; Robert Redford, Woody Harrelson, and Demi Moore; NAFTA; River Phoenix; the EU; Got Milk?; Nordic Track; Rabin and Arafat; Monica Seles; Sleepless in Seattle; the World Wide Web; the Buffalo Bills losing the Super Bowl for the third straight time; Jerry, Elaine, George, and Kramer; Whitney Houston singing “I Will Always Love You.’ You get the picture..

Mallory has inherited an amazing old  cottage on the ocean on Nantucket from her aunt Greta.  Lucky girl.  So when Mallory’s brother Cooper is getting married he asks if he can bring some guys for Labor Day weekend; a bachelor party of sorts. She agrees and so the party is on. But the party ends up being  more of a party for two for various reasons. This is where Mallory meets Jake  McCloud and her life is forever changed.

Each subsequent summer and continuing on to amount to 28 in all, Jake and Mallory manage to get together on Nantucket for Labor Day weekend. One weekend each year. Only one.  Why? Because that is what works for them. Maybe they would not have that special spark if they had to deal with the mundane events of everyday life.  Mallory knows she loves living on Nantucket. She is not going to leave the island even to be with Jake. Jake’s life is not on the island. And he’s been involved in a very serious relationship with his girlfriend since they were kids. There is history and baggage. So the one  weekend a year system  continues to work for them both.

All the characters in this novel are well-developed. Cooper is Mallory’s brother.  He’s not able to sustain a marriage longer than it takes to say I do.  Mallory’s parents really want her to get married and be  happy. Their version.  Leland is Mallory’s best friend who we discover is not such a great friend after all.  And Frazier is one of Cooper’s best friends who becomes a vital part of the story.

I knew I wanted this novel to last, but I also could not put it down for long.  The ocean kept calling and Labor Day Weekend was always beckoning. OMG! The romance. The beach. The cottage. The food.  Being on the water. Summertime. This book is escapism at its peak.

Even though I knew what was going to happen at the end, I have to tell you that it is a very satisfying ending. And I sobbed. I was happy to have the house to myself so I could wallow in it.

Elin Hilderbrand was visiting the island of St. John while I was reading the book.  She’s working on the third in the Winter Series that will come out in October. She lives on the island part of the year. How very cool.

Elin Hilderbrand  has lived on Nantucket for 28 years. She moved there and lived in a small apartment to begin with. She was twenty-three.

Little Brown will publish 28 SUMMERS on June 16 and everyone will be able to read this amazing novel for themselves.  I am putting this amazing novel on the very top of my summer reading list of favorites. I think you will too.  I hope you’ll think of Copperfish Books and order from us.  You know how much we love you guys.

The Girl With The Louding Voice by

The Girl With The Louding Voice

I’ve been looking at this book for several months. I was intrigued when Jenna chose it for a Today bookclub pick. But I just wasn’t ready for it, yet. I’ve been reading  some lighter books because I  haven’t been able to concentrate on heavy issues. But that time has come and gone and I devoured THE GIRL WITH THE LOUDING VOICE in two days.

We’ve all been horrified at the news clips showing  an officer as he held his knee on George Floyd’s throat for almost nine minutes, killing him in front of millions of shocked viewers. We watched as other officers allowed this tragedy to happen.  This has sparked interest in black authors and issues. There are a lot of great black authors. I chose to read THE GIRL WITH THE LOUDING  VOICE at this time for a couple of reasons. I don’t make a point of  choosing books because an author is black or white, male or female, or of a specific sexual orientation. I usually choose my next read because the content is intriguing to me. Or, I am familiar with the author . I chose this book at this time because the protagonist is one of the strongest women I’ve come across in modern day.  Period. And this story is begging for telling…..https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jIQOPneQDco

Fourteen-year-old Adunni lives in a small town several hours from Lagos, Nigeria.  Her mother has died and she’s left with her two brothers and her father who has not been able to get out of his own tracks since his wife passed.  Adunni is to marry  a wealthy man who already has two wives, however, they’ve not been able to provide him with a son. The money he offers Adunni’s father will pay all the bills and then some. So off she goes even though it is illegal for her to marry because she is under age. And she is devastated.

All Adunni has ever wished for is a proper education. She’s had some schooling and her mother made it quite clear that education is everything.  Now being third wife is the only life she has. Until she runs away and is sold into domestic slavery in Lagos.

At first, I had a hard time reading what is the voice of Adunni. The story is told in first person and so we are privy to Adunni’s thoughts and fears from the beginning which gives so much  power to this amazing story.  I had not thought to read this book in one big gulp, but, quite simply, I devoured it.

Adunni is taken to Lagos to work as a housemaid to a woman who is richer than Midas. Big Madame is larger than life in many ways. Her figure is daunting from the moment we meet her and her chest is explained as being  “wide like chalk board.”  But  her inherent meanness is not yet apparent. Yet, we can sense it…. Adunni has been sold into servitude to Big Madam and even though this is illegal it is rampant in Nigeria.  And then we meet Big Daddy and we know what is coming.

Working from before sun- up to sometimes midnight is Adunni’s fate at Big Madam’s. Her meager wages are being paid to the “agent” who sold her to Big Madam. He promises to bring her the money in three month’s time. Really?  Still, Adunni keeps her eye on the prize: education, education, education.  And then, Kofi, Big Madam’s cook, shows Adunni a newspaper article offering a chance to win an actual education. And this story becomes a blaze.

When a neighbor, Ms. Tia, befriends Adunni, we begin to see a light in this tunnel.  These two women need each other.  I really enjoyed seeing their relationship blossom and become victorious.

There is so much “meat” packed into this amazing story. The characters are deep and strong. Adunni’s voice begins thin and then explodes into The Louding Voice it was destined to become.

Halfway through the book Daré begins the chapters with a Nigerian fact.  For instance; Fact: Zamfara state in northern Nigeria was the first to make polygamy legal, in 2000.  And so this explains how these men have many wives. Boom. 

Abi Daré

Abi Daré grew up in a housing estate in Lagos, Nigeria, where nearly every family had a housemaid.  After she married and had daughters of her own she decided it was time to write about this by using the character of Adunni as the medium. I’m so glad she did.  She now lives in U.K. I’m grateful for this story. It’s simply devastating and so very important.

THE GIRL WITH THE LOUDING VOICE was published  in February by Dutton which is an imprint of Penguin Random  House Publishing. This is one of the most important novels I’ve read to date.

Always The Last To Know by Kristan Higgins

Always The Last To Know

Kristan Higgins writes contemporary romance novels. I used to think they would be all fluff.  And I used to be so wrong.  I have enjoyed each of her novels and ALWAYS THE LAST TO KNOW is no exception.

Barb and John have been married for fifty years. They’ve been plodding along and after this many years you aren’t surprised to find they have become pretty bored with their lives.  It’s become a mundane life. But that all changes when John has a stroke. Put the brakes on. Stop the presses. Everything changes on a dime.

Barb and John have two successful adult daughters. One leaves her career to return home to help with her dad. The other begins experiencing panic attacks as she looks at her seemingly perfect life.

You are about to find out what’s really been going on inside the Frost family. Both heartbreaking and hilarious, ALWAYS THE LAST TO KNOW is smartly written with characters you just can’t help but root for.

Kristan Higgins is the NYT bestselling of 19 novels. She just keeps getting better and better.

Kristan Higgins

My digital review copy was provided by Berkley Publishing House, a division of  Penguin Randomhouse in exchange for an honest review. It’s a real keeper.

Copperfish will have paperback copies sometime next week.  Pub date is June 9.

The Second Home by Christina Clancy

The Second Home

Christina Clancy

Look at this cover. It screams “beach.” I’ve been waiting months for this novel to be available to you readers. I read it way back then in the middle of the winter when covid-19 was not even a thought yet.

We may not all be able to go to the beach this summer so we really need reading material that will take  us there… Literally. THE SECOND HOME already does that by just looking at the cover.

Just when you find yourself looking for the next great summer read along comes THE SECOND HOME and you’ve got your book. But what have you got? Is it a light summer read? Well, yeah, but it’s not light and fluffy like you might expect. Filled with beach aroma, beach activities, beach food, and lots of crazy summertime stuff, but this writer brings so much more to the feast. She’s got a page-turning adventure that is unlike any other. Perfect for this summer.

I grew up on the Eastern shore. All winter long I dreamt of going back to the beach, the place I loved more than any other. My happiest times growing up were spent at the beach. So I know what it’s like to look forward to going to the beach.

Ann and Poppy have always thrived during summers spent at their beat up cottage on the back bay in Wellfleet on Cape Cod. Their parents would load up the car and head on out for the coast from their home in Milwaukee.  Their home was nothing expansive and not on the ocean. It was on the back bay and practically falling apart. Still, it had been in their family for generations and they loved it.  Then, they decided to adopt a teenage boy named Michael. And he came to the beach with them that fateful summer fifteen years ago. And nothing was ever the same.

  • Second homes.
  • Second families.
  • Second chances. 

The story opens telling us that the parents have been killed in a tragic car accident. Ann is returning to the cottage to make arrangements to sell it. She thinks she wants no part of it anymore. After all, it’s where the secrets lie.  Now Ann and Poppy have to make some decisions.  All is going as planned until Michael resurfaces and lays claim to his share of the house and he does not want to sell it.

What actually happened that summer all those years ago hangs over your head throughout the novel. And it would keep you blowing through the pages on its own. But the writing and the characters are so compelling. Not to even mention the biggest character of all: the saltbox house.  Clancy beautifully evokes feelings of Cape Cod and the shore to the pages. The coolness of the sand filtering through your toes, the tangy aroma of the beach, and the laid back adventurous atmosphere that spells BEACH in capital letters.  It’s all here plus the drama of not knowing what caused the treacherous rift between the family members.

Christina Clancy

This might be Christina Clancy’s debut novel but, it’s not going to be her last. I know I’m already sitting on the edge of my reading seat waiting for her sophomore effort!

This novel is on the summer reading list for the Critic’s Choice Artis-Naples. You know you need it. We will have copies of THE SECOND HOME at Copperfish Books.  They will arrive this week. They will be discounted 20%.

My review copy was provided by St. Martin’s Publishing Group.  I can’t thank them enough. THE SECOND HOME is going to be one of the BIG summer reads this year! I loved this book.

Maurice Muses, It’s June, Now What?

We never thought we’d still be so deeply involved in Covid-19 throughout the summer. But here it is June and we’re still far from knowing the ending of this unprecedented story. Yes, our state has begun opening….maybe even a little too much. But I’ve managed to meet a friend for lunch, and my husband and I even dared to dine out last Friday night. Each outing was carefully decided upon and the venues were pristinely chosen. I met Karen at Cafe You here in Cape Coral.

Ana’s Homemade Cafe You

Ana’s pistachio donuts Cafe You

We enjoyed a delicious and healthy meal in a safe environment and were tended to with the utmost of care.  My daughter-in-law Ana is the amazing pastry chef  and my husband Jack works in the front of the cafe with the most affable group of people you can ever hope to meet. It was a great experience, but we were reminded how different everything is as everyone wore masks and constantly cleaned and distanced. Still, so glad I went. A tiny slice of yesterday.

Now, let’s talk upcoming books. There are some great reads on the way . THE LAST FLIGHT by Julie Clarke is out June 2.

The Last Flight

THE LAST FLIGHT was a digital read that I started on a whim.  It was like riding a wild rollercoaster into HELL. Loved it.

28 Summers

28 SUMMERS is by far one of my favorite novels this summer.  I absolutely adore this book, even more than last summer’s ,SUMMER OF 69, and that is saying a lot!

THE SECOND HOME  is coming. You are going to love this novel that mostly takes place on Cape  .

The Second Home

The Second Home

 

The Last Train To Key West

I love Chanel Cleeton. You are in for a treat with THE LAST TRAIN TO KEY WEST. This cover is a real winner, too.

 

 

So, you can see a smattering of the good books coming soon for your enjoyment. They will be available at Copperfish Books.  And my reviews will be coming very soon. Speaking of the , I want to let you know that those of you who live within driving distance of Copperfish Books in Punta Gorda, Florida, can now make appointments to come in and shop. We are being extremely cautious for your safety and for ours.  But up to three people can shop at a time. The appointments are for half hour increments. Booksellers are wearing masks and are having our visitors wear them as well. Children over the age of twelve are welcome to come with. You can make your appointment on our website or you can call the store at 941-205-2560. We are still offering curbside pick up and we are doing a lot of mailing. Our website for our Zoom events  has  been very popular. This is a saving grace for the authors who have books coming out during this staying in time. Mary Alice Monroe and ON BOULEVARD and Mary Kay Andrews  and  HELLO, SUMMER had very successful publishing days. Their new novels are both enjoying positions on the NYT bestseller list. Yippee!! And if you haven’t already purchased please take the time to do so from Copperfish Books. The shipping will be free if you choose to buy both books and have them shipped to your home or to a friend. And, as always, new hardcovers are discounted 20%.

I believe that good books are going to be even more crucial to our summertime adventures this year. After all, many of us are not able to travel yet. Plans have been cancelled. People are being challenged to make new plans. There is nothing that can take the place of actual travel, well, other than a great book. So I’m tirelessly so I can bring you information about the best books for you during this crazy time.

I wish all of you continued good  , and, of course, safety. Cheers!

 

 

 

 

 

The Prisoner’s Wife by Maggie Brookes

The Prisoner’s Wife

Just feast your eyes on this magnificent cover.  The fact that this WW11 novel is based on a real story does not change that it is indeed a novel of The Holocaust. I know. We all are fascinated and horrified by it, and, in many ways we are exhausted by the sheer number of  stories. So when I come across something unique I take notice. In the case of THE PRISONER’S WIFE, I’m really glad I did.

Brookes, a British poet and novelist, was moved to write THE PRISONER’S WIFE after hearing a story told by a British POW who survived WW11. Though her characters are fictionalized, Brookes conducted extensive research, including visiting the sites of the former POW camps featured in this story, and driving the length of the Long March, the bitterly cold, miles-long route that soldiers forced their prisoners to trek across Northern territory in snow and severe winter conditions. The author ‘s own father was a POW and her novel sheds light on the treacherous conditions that many prisoners faced, which few people know about today. 

It’s 1944 and Izabela is a Czech teenager left behind with her mother while her father and older brother are fighting with the resistance  against the Nazis. Of course, Izabela is wild to begin her own adventure by joining in the fight. It isn’t long before she falls for a British prisoner, weds him in secret and flees the farm. The story that follows the star-crossed lovers is based on a true story and although it’s quite harsh and even punishing at times to read, it is one to be told.

As Izabela hides her identity as a woman and becomes a “boy” the reality of what this means becomes almost intolerable. But the other prisoners keep the couple’s secret at all costs. After all, her survival is contingent on everyone working together.

Tireless research was done. New facts learned have been woven into this compelling story of courage, endurance, friendship and love. Not to be missed.

Maggie Brooks is a British ex-journalist and BBC television producer turned  novelist.

Maggie Brookes

THE PRISONER’S WIFE by Maggie Brookes is on sale now in a trade paperback edition. Copperfish Books will be able to order this title for  you.

My review copy came from Berkley, a publishing division of Penguin Random in exchange for an honest review. It’s a real winner. You WW11 buffs need this one.

Camino Winds by John Grisham

Camino Winds

I loved CAMINO ISLAND.  Discovering that a sequel was coming, well, it is here!! And it’s wonderful. Perfect. Entertaining but with a murder mystery to be solved,  during a hurricane at that.

The story begins with a  sumptuous party at Bruce Cable’s home on Camino Island. Celebrating the return of now best-selling literary ,  Mercer Mann. All the usual suspects are there. What a bunch of literary gossips. A delightful and very colorful group.

But the fun quickly dissipates as hurricane Leo changes course and makes a beeline straight for the island. Mandatory evacuations go out. Most residents heed the alarm. But  Bruce decides to stay behind and ride the storm out.  I knew this would not end well. It rarely does. The scenes during the storm are harrowing. Anyone who’s endured a storm such as this understands the aftermath. Sometime as you hunker down in the midst of the storm, your mind reminds you that this was not a good plan.

After the storm passes Bruce emerges from his mostly unscathed to   out the island and  on friends.  When he discovers the body of  Nelson Kerr who is a popular thriller writer, the question arrises: was this an accident from the storm, or was this murder? We get up front and personal with some of the local  who seem to be totally bungling the investigation…Small town stuff.

Grisham brings back more of what he is so well known for:  murder and mystery and even legal stuff. So as much as I loved the story, I missed, missed, missed, the . Of course the is a mess and has sustained lots of damage due to flooding. It could have been much worse if Bruce and some of his employees hadn’t taken the time to move books and valuables to the second floor. Still, wreckage to be repaired.

John Grisham is a master story-teller.  CAMINO WINDS brings what is actually a   read into the murder mystery genre.  So there is more story for everyone.

John Grisham

CAMINO WINDS is pure entertainment. But  it also brings to mind that hurricane season is almost upon us. Always mindful, I can’t even imagine the fear of a storm coming during this pandemic. I shudder at that thought and pray they all just go away.

I am including a link to a very enjoyable podcast with Mitchell Kaplan of Books & Books out of . His conversation with Grisham is just delightful. You will enjoy it and hearing the passion in their voices as they speak of books and stuff is just what you need right now.

Some really great news to end my review. There will be a third in the Camino Series. Yippee. Much dancing around and clapping. You see, I’ve totally  fallen for the quirky character of Bruce Cable. I can’t wait to meet him again.

My copy of CAMINO WINDS was a gift. So I am not indebted to anyone for a review. However, I did love it! The great publishing people at Double Day, a division of Penguin Random ,  have a great gift in John Grisham.

Copperfish Book

Copperfish Books is selling CAMINO WINDS at a 20% in or online.  Free shipping to your home with $35 or more purchase. Might I suggest a paperback copy of CAMINO ISLAND….. to add to your pleasure. Cheers!

 

The Summer Guests by Mary Alice Monroe ( now in trade paper )

The Summer Guests

A new novel by Mary Alice Monroe is always a big deal. THE SUMMER GUESTS is just out in trade paper and available to purchase at Copperfish Books. As I scanned for information about the story, I expected to see it taking place along the coast of South Carolina where most of her other novels are set. Yes, this one actually begins on Isle of Palm on the coast of South Carolina, but it quickly moves away from the coast and up into the gorgeous mountains of North Carolina. Why? EVACUATION! A monster hurricane has just rolled off the coast of Africa and is headed that way.

When I began reading the prologue the hair actually stood up on the back of my neck. I kid you not. Those of you who have known the horrors of a hurricane coming straight for you know what I’m talking about.  Residents in Florida and along the Southern Eastern coast need to leave their home; evacuate, now. That’s where this story begins. A couple years ago we had hurricane Irma come so close to our home that it scared the bejesus out of all of us. I know what the day by day waiting is like. I know what it’s like to hear the hour by hour reporting as the storm gets ready to blow through your community.  My heart was already pounding.

Mary Alice

Mary Alice Monroe is now famous for bringing us the very best in environmental fiction.  I have learned so much about endangered species that live in my own backyard and nearby. I love her writing and I love how involved she is with protecting the animals and wildlife.  This time her main concern is the equestrian world of horses and handlers. I fell hard for this novel. I just think it’s super.  I completely lost myself in it.

Cara Rutledge just did not think the tropical wave the newscasters were talking about would come to amount to much. After all, she’d been through plenty of storms through the  years. You don’t live on Isle of Palm  and not feel scathed. But she was preparing to take her young daughter to visit friends in the mountains in North Carolina. Surely, it would just be fine.  So, she turned her back on the storm and went her way.

In Palm Beach, Florida, Hannah McLain was flitting between her boyfriend Angel’s creepy dog Max, and trying to shove all Angel’s Olympic medals in a suitcase per his instructions.  Hannah is a make-up artist and Angel is a famous equestrian.

In Kiawah, South Carolina, Moira Stevens is packed and ready to evacuate to her  parent’s horse farm Freehold Farm in the mountains of North Carolina.  Her husband Thom was away on business.  Their marriage could easily be in trouble.

In Wellington, Florida, Elise Klug and her mother are struggling to get their prize horses into their trailers and ready to begin the long drive to the mountains.  Elise’s mother is a no-nonsense German woman  who is determined that her daughter become an award-winning  equestrian whether she wants it or not.

Each chapter begins with a weather update that will keep you on the edge of your seat.  My neck is getting tight just contemplating it all.  It adds to the tension.

So, the question arises: what would you take with you if  you had to evacuate your home not knowing if you would ever return?

All these people are thrown together with a some very special  dogs and some very important horses. They are in close quarters for a week. They are forced to confront issues, come to terms with important life-changing events, and question love and devotion. Tempers bristle and even the animals question the many changes.

“Mary Alice Monroe is a passionate conservationist who uses novels to bring public awareness to the plight of the world’s endangered, undervalued, and sometimes obscure creatures. ”  This is why I love Mary Alice Monroe.

Let’s just say that these people will leave this mountain different than when they arrived. All good.

” But as the storm passes, they realize that what really matters isn’t what they brought with them to the mountains. Rather, it’s what they’ll take with them when they leave.”

My review copy arrived via Gallery Books, a division of Simon & Schuster publishers in exchange for an honest review. Well, folks, I absolutely LOVE it.

Punta Gorda

Copperfish Books

Copperfish Books loves Mary Alice Monroe. We have trade paperback copies of THE SUMMER GUESTS in stock and read to go.  Plus, our Cathy has chosen the paperback version as her bookclub pick for August. Perfect timing.  You’ll receive 10% off this book club pick.

If you purchase ON OCEAN BOULEVARD and THE SUMER GUESTS you’ll get free shipping to your home. Something to think about. And they’re both  discounted.

Beach Read by Emily Henry

Beach Read

I was combing the bookshelves in our office a couple weeks ago looking for something special to read. The shelves are used to display review copies of upcoming titles. And I needed something new. Something fresh. Just look how colorful this cover is.  And the photo on the front definitely got my attention.  I was actually hoping for a beach read. And that is what I got.

BEACH READ by Emily Henry is a novel about two blocked novelists who can’t get out of their own tracks.  January Andrews has sequestered herself in her recently deceased dad’s beach house in Michigan. She’s listening as the clock tick-ticks against her deadline for the next great romance novel. And she’s blocked. She’s broke, and she’s feeling pretty beat up.  Who’s her neighbor? Augustus Everett writes literary fiction. They say opposites attract. Really?

Henry managed to grab my reading attention right away with her sense of place and sense of humor.  January has issues and she’s trying to deal with the newness of discovering her father had another life, one she has only found out about since his death.  So there is that.  And it’s getting in the way of her writing. She’s also lost the ability to feel love and that’s devastating for someone who makes her living writing about it.  I love the beach cottage. And the small town the story is set in. Not to mention the little book store and the cast of unique characters.

Augustus has his own demons. His world is filled with secrets that do not come to the surface right away. They ooze into the story like cold honey from the jar.

When push comes to shove, the two decide to swap genres for the summer. January will take a stab at writing a literary novel. Augustus will write a rom-com. Where on earth is this going? January gets to take Augustus into her romance world one day a week; show him the way around. One day she takes him to the carnival, a great place for lovers.  Augustus takes January on several interviews with survivors of a death cult he’s been following. Now you get the ghist.

You have to know they are going to hook up. After all, this is a romance novel. And when they do ooh-la-la. Hot and heavy. Scenes are pretty steamy. Beware.  This is just what you need to take you away from this virus and get you out of your house and into another world. The writing is very good. Being at the beach or the lake is always a good thing. And this delightful story is being published in trade paper form and will be on sale tomorrow. You can purchase your copy at Copperfish Books. Our Lucy will be hosting a virtual book club featuring BEACH READ in July. Purchase the book at 10% off. We will have copies in store as of tomorrow, May 19.

I have to thank Berkley Jove publishing company, a division of penguinrandomhouse for providing a review copy of this book. I loved it.

Punta Gorda

Copperfish Books

On Ocean Boulevard by Mary Alice Monroe

On Ocean Boulevard

New York Times Best Selling Author, Mary Alice Monroe, is back with another highly anticipated  novel in her beloved  Beach House series. I am beside myself. She has outdone herself. I loved this book. LOVED IT!

ON OCEAN BOULEVARD, is one of those books you have to rein yourself in over. I kept trying to make it last longer. It’s got everything I love in a summer read including bringing back many of the characters I’ve come to love over the years. And, we are back on Isle of Palm,  one of my favorite beach communities. Throw in the sea turtles that I adore and some really important ocean information and I am happy as a clam.

I think the cover is great.  For me, that says a lot. Covers can make or break a novel.  This cover practically screams yippee it’s summer and we’re going to the beach. It’s bright and colorful and makes me smile. A happy book cover.

We all have been hovering at home, staying safe and trying to stay well. Some beaches in this country are still closed. It’s been a very sad couple of months. But some beaches are opening up, very carefully. And if people do the right thing and keep social distancing like they are asked to do, well, maybe we all will be able to return to the beach sometime this summer.  Having said all that, this book is going to be your first BIG summer book of the season. You will be at the beach: Isle of Palm and Sullivan’s Island, both in South Carolina.  You will have toes in the surf, you will be able to raise your face to the wind and smell the ocean, and you will be enjoying the life-changing sounds of the waves as they meet the coast. All this stuff sure makes a difference and will make you happy.

There are some serious issues addressed in ON OCEAN BOULEVARD.  I’ve  been following the turtle ladies for years. I feel as if I know them. They are tireless and the love and dedication they show is refreshing to see and I never tire of reading about their findings.

Mary Alice Monroe

Mary Alice Monroe begins each chapter with a paragraph about the turtles or the environment; true things. For instance, here is the one at the top of Chapter Fourteen:

 The temperature of the sand during incubation plays a role in determining the sex of the hatchlings. Cool sand produces males, while hotter sand produces females. Thus the phrase, “Hot chicks and cool dudes.”

Another issue that is quickly becoming very important to me is the horrific  ocean of plastic that  is growing larger by the day; this out in the middle of nowhere.  And here is the paragraph for Chapter Fifteen:

Plastic isn’t biodegradable. Depending on the type of plastic and where it lands, items can take days to hundreds of years to break down into very small  pieces, which means the waste plastic is left for generations to come.

Sea Turtle & Plastic

So, what do  you think I did upon finishing ON OCEAN BOULEVARD? I found a website to purchase one of those bracelets that actually use that plastic. 4Ocean makes bracelets from the renegade plastic. I bought two: one to save the ocean, the other to save the turtles, of course. My husband also has two. And our grandchildren are also sporting these very important trinkets.

Okay, now back to the actual story.  THE BEACH HOUSE series began years ago and has evolved into a big juicy family saga that’s set in Charleston, South Carolina and Isle of Palm, on the coast. It has everything you want for summer.  I care about these characters.  They experience very real problems that most families actually deal with.  Over the years I’ve watched as Cara Rutledge has gone from being the youngest to now becoming the matriarch  now that  her mother has passed on. I’ve watched the drama over the future of the beloved beach house and I’ve felt worried.  You see, I want this beach house to live on forever. Now, Cara is about to get married, for the second time. After losing her first husband too soon,  she thinks she’s ready to experience love again. Is she?

So many of the characters you’ll remember from older books have come home to roost.  They’ve grown and become more mature, some at a price. Cara’s brother, Palmer, an alcoholic, has stopped drinking and is working hard to stay sober. Her niece is back after running away from the island to experience “real off island” life in California.  And even the Gold Bug, Cara’s mother’s old car, is back.

Me with On Ocean Boulevard before publication.

Honestly, I was totally transported to Isle of Palm while reading ON OCEAN BOULEVARD.  A book is a real winner to be able to do that.  I simply can not wait to return to Isle of Palm and more of the Beach House series. I could NOT put it down. It was wonderful!

I can not thank the very generous publishing people at Gallery Books enough. They sent me this wonderful finished copy of ON OCEAN BOULEVARD.  I am so fortunate.

Copperfish Books in Punta Gorda, Florida will have copies of ON OCEAN BOULEVARD for sale on Tuesday. 20% off because they are brand spanking new hardcovers. You need this novel. And you can get it Tuesday.  Tell them Maurice sent you:)

Punta Gorda

Copperfish Books