From Goodreads: When secrets tear love apart, can the truth mend it?
Mae Summers and Gabriel Broadbent grew up together in the idyllic Summers’ Inn, perched at the edge the St. Lawrence river. Mae was orphaned at the age of six and Gabe needed protection from his alcoholic father, so both were raised under one roof by Mae’s grandparents, Lilly and George. A childhood friendship quickly developed into a first love—a love that was suddenly broken by Gabe’s unexpected departure. Mae grew up, got over her heartbreak, and started a life for herself in New York City.
After more than a decade, Mae and Gabe find themselves pulled back to Alexandria Bay. Hoping to find solace within the Summers’ Inn, Mae instead finds her grandparents in the midst of decline and their past unravelling around her. A lifetime of secrets stand in the way of this unconventional family’s happiness. Will they be able to reclaim the past and come together, or will they remain separate islands?
My thoughts: I had a hard time with this one. I was really intrigued by the synopsis, title, and cover image, but it just fell short for me. Characters are integral to me, and I like a good flawed character, but I didn't like any of these characters. They all seemed to ruminate for years over things they did, or things that were done to them. So much so that it completely affected every aspect of their lives. I had a hard time connecting to anyone in the story, which is important to me as a reader.
I was really confused for the first few chapters, too, because so many characters were introduced at once. I often forgot whose perspective I was reading from. There were two characters with names that started with 'V', and I kept confusing the two.
I did really like the setting. The river played a big part and definitely felt like a character at times. The cover leads you to believe the story will be optimistic and sunny, but in reality it was kind of dark and dreary. I like when the atmosphere interacts with characters and becomes one itself.
I ended up rating this 3 out of 5. It was a decent story, but just not the right one for me. I still think it's worth a read, though. I really wanted to like this one more than I did.
A free digital copy of this book was provided by Simon and Schuster Canada in exchange for an honest review.