Thursday, June 11, 2020

Book Review: The Shore House by Heidi Hostetter

Net Galley Summary:

When the Bennett family arrives at the shore house to spend the summer together, they bring more baggage than just suitcases…

When Kaye Bennett, the matriarch of the Bennett family, summons her adult children to the shore house, she anticipates a vacation full of nostalgia. It’s a chance to relive the carefree joy of summers past: basking in the hot sun, cooling off in the surf, and enjoying long, relaxing evenings watching fireflies on the deck. But when Kaye’s son and daughter arrive, late and uncooperative, it becomes clear the family desperately needs to reconnect.

Kaye and her daughter Stacy have been quietly at odds for years and resentment has grown around words unsaid. Faced with spending the summer months in such close quarters, Kaye is determined to remind Stacy of happier times and why she once loved their beautiful beachside home.

But both Kaye and Stacy are holding something back… and only when a heart-stopping accident on the beach puts what Stacy most loves at risk are the two women finally able to set free the secrets in their shared past.

Tee's Review:

The Shore House centers around the Bennett family, and their New Jersy shore beach cottage. Noooo not THAT New Jersey shore, the nice quiet shore of Dewberry Beach. The family hasn’t had their normal summer there for about three years due to the father having a heart attack.

Kaye Bennett decides to try and recapture the past by gathering the family for the length of the summer, never mind the fact that she has not heard from son Brad in months while he spends the time traveling around on adventures with his hippy girlfriend. Or that daughter Stacy and she have a very strained relationship and have never gotten along. She gets Stacy there by telling her that Brad is coming for the entire summer. Stacy finds out her mother lied to her when Brad is a no show when she gets to the cottage. She wants to pack up her two kids and husband and leave, but she stays. Brad shows up and the family drama begins.

One of my favorite things about the book was the town of Dewberry Beach. I love when an author can describe a place and you just seem to be right in the middle of town seeing all that is described. The town of Dewberry is idyllic with its summer traditions, I wanted to be on the crowded beach smelling the scent of suntan lotion and hearing the yells of people as they play against the waves or on the beach, or in the town square with all the excited children, bikes decorated for the annual Fourth of July parade, cards flapping against the spokes of the wheels to make noise as they rode, maybe a bit wobbly down the road.

There are several surprises and secrets thrown in to keep the book moving, but the story is written not to have a jaw-dropping wow moment, it just flows naturally like a soft summer breeze. Shore House was a delight to read. It felt like an escape. It was a quick read showing that family bonds are strong even when you don't realize it, a story of forgiveness, and finding yourself. It is the perfect summer read.

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