Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Review: Summer at Hope Haven by Kristin Harper

Summer at Hope Haven
by Kristin Harper 

Publisher: Bookouture
Pages: 276
Format: eARC
Buy the Book: Amazon

Goodreads:  Making her way up the cedar-lined driveway, tears fill her eyes at the sight of the cottage’s faded trim and peeling turquoise shutters. Taking a deep breath, she grasps the heart-shaped iron door handle and steps inside the once-happy childhood home she’s been avoiding. It is time to face up to the past…

When Emily’s fiancé walks out on her while she’s still grieving the loss of her family in a terrible accident, she escapes back to Hope Haven on the remote Dune Island, where her family vacationed every summer. Emily hopes that fixing up the house will also mend her broken heart, but the cottage holds more than just bittersweet childhood memories. Emptying her father’s antique writing desk, Emily finds a letter that reveals a devastating secret about her parents.

With a head full of questions that can never be answered, it seems like returning to the island was the worst decision Emily ever made… until she meets Lucas Socorro, saltwater dripping from his dark curls after a surf session. As they take long walks on the soft sand, and talk late into the firefly-lit night, Emily wonders if Dr Luke—as the kids in the hospital call him—could be the one to help her heal. With Luke holding her hand, delving into her family’s painful past is a little easier.

Painting the gloomy cottage walls the colour of seashells, and revamping her grandmother’s flea-market furniture, Emily starts to feel she might call Dune Island home for good—and that she could build that home right here with Luke. But when Emily’s family secret spreads through a network of local gossips, her fragile heart breaks all over again. Luke is the only one who could have started the rumours. Was she wrong to trust him so easily?

As the sun sets behind the dunes, Emily has a difficult decision to make. Does she pack her bags and leave the island for good? Or take a risk that Hope Haven has everything she’s been looking for?

Kritters Thoughts:  Emily is still reeling from a tragedy that changed her life forever, so she decides to spend a summer at a place that has always finds herself comfort - a cottage on the water.  With friends close and a small town hospital that is in need of art, Emily finds a place that will help her heal and maybe even confront a few things to help her move into the next phase of her life.  Oh and of course there is a romance wrapped into this book!

I loved this story.  It was the exact thing I needed to read when I did.  Yes, it was a romance book, but it had such great plot and was more than just the romance that was happening in the pages.  Emily's battle with grief and the stages that she was going through was enjoyable to read.  I liked that Luke the love interest was also more than just a love interest, he had his own things he was battling and it added such depth to the story.  

Romance is a genre that will always be a place to escape to when reading is hard and this one fit the bill.  I was excited and disappointed when I finished to find out this was a debut because there isn't a backlist for me to dive into, but there is hope for many more to come!

Rating: definitely a good read, but can't read two in a row

Ebook 2020 Challenge: 81 out of 100

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from Bookouture.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

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