Take it to the beach: A Certain Summer by Patricia Beard [Excerpt]

Good afternoon (or good evening?) fellow book lovers,
Are you looking for something to read this summer that is non-YA? We'd like to suggest A Certain Summer by Patricia Beard.

We haven't read A Certain Summer yet but we thought we'd dedicate a post about it since it is in our TBR pile and it is coming out tomorrow.

"Nothing ever changes at Wauregan.”

That mystique is the tradition of the idyllic island colony off the shore of Long Island, the comforting tradition that its summer dwellers have lived by for over half a century. But in the summer of 1948, after a world war has claimed countless men—even those who came home—the time has come to deal with history’s indelible scars.

Helen Wadsworth’s husband, Arthur, was declared missing in action during an OSS operation in France, but the official explanation was mysteriously nebulous. Now raising a teenage son who longs to know the truth about his father, Helen turns to Frank Hartman—her husband’s best friend and his partner on the mission when he disappeared. Frank, however, seems more intent on filling the void in Helen’s life that Arthur’s absence has left. As Helen’s affection for Frank grows, so does her guilt, especially when Peter Gavin, a handsome Marine who was brutally tortured by the Japanese and has returned with a faithful war dog, unexpectedly stirs new desires. With her heart pulled in multiple directions, Helen doesn’t know whom to trust—especially when a shocking discovery forever alters her perception of both love and war.

Part mystery, part love story, and part insider’s view of a very private world, A Certain Summer resonates in the heart long after the last page is turned.
From the lovely summer-y cover (LOVE!!) to the island setting, you should definitely keep this book under your radar this summer. For those who enjoy WWII-era reads, A Certain Summer explores what happen to families after the war is over.

Here's a taste:

Nothing ever changed in Wauregan. That was the island's purpose, its life force--and its myth. If there were questions, there were answers, either in the Rule Book devised by its founders and unaltered in half a century, or in the collective memory of its summer people.

The colony's traditions had survived two world wars and the Great Depression, yet in the summer of 1948, undercurrents and disruptions caused by the recent conflict swirled and sucked.

Helen Wadsworth was not alone in needing the island's serenity to soothe her, although her situation was singular. The other women in the colony were either reunited with their husbands, if sometimes tenuously, or were war widows. Helen was officially neither. 

Four years earlier, her husband, Arthur, had been reported "missing, presumed dead" on an OSS mission in France. Since then, the War Office had not elaborated on the original statement. There was one person who might be able to tell her more, but like so many men who had returned from combat, particularly those who had served in the secret service, he had been particularly mute on the subject...
Be on the lookout for A Certain Summer at your favorite bookstore or library because it comes out on May 21st (tomorrow!). For more information about the book and to read other readers' thoughts about the novel, check out its Goodreads page.

Let us know what you think of the excerpt or any of your thoughts about the book.

Happy reading,
Michelle & Leslie

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