Published: Harlequin: Graydon House
Date: 12th July 2022
Source: Publicist via NetGalley
Devastated by the sudden death of her mother—a quiet, loving and intensely private Southern seamstress called Miss Mabel, who overflowed with pearls of Ozarks wisdom but never spoke of her own family—Sutton Douglas makes the impulsive decision to pack up and head north to the Michigan resort town where she believes she’ll find answers to the lifelong questions she’s had about not only her mother’s past but also her own place in the world.
Recalling Miss Mabel’s sewing notions that were her childhood toys, Sutton buys a collection of buttons at an estate sale from Bonnie Lyons, the imposing matriarch of the lakeside community. As Sutton cautiously befriends Bonnie and is taken into her confidence, she begins to uncover the secrets about her family that Miss Mabel so carefully hid, and about the role that Sutton herself unwittingly played in it all.
As always Viola Shipman has written an engaging and at times heart touching story of a woman grieving the loss of her mother, and alongside that she is wondering about the past. Her mother has been a lone woman with no family other than Sutton. Now Sutton wants to unravel the secrets and mystery. Will she like what she finds – no not all of it, but in the search she will find truth and integrity and will be able to name the values that truly matter. And the people who truly matter.
Parenthood is examined in this novel. Sutton wonders did her mother really love her, as she journeys I think she finds the answer to that, and sees for herself where a mothers lack of love has gone awry big time.
In Saugatuck / Douglas, Sutton meets up with Tug and a friendship is soon formed. He is a loyal, kind, challenging friend. As well he sees the opportunity for new life and hope for family way before Sutton does.
The setting itself in Saugatuck / Douglas is a character in itself. The way the author describes life there makes me the reader very much fall in love with the place and itch to visit.
Throughout the book as Sutton examines her past and present and future, names her values and chooses life and happiness, we are presented with thought provoking ideas relevant to our lives today. Lots of wisdom.
I really liked the town, Sutton and Tug, I felt sorry for one lonely woman who made her own bed and even though its uncomfortable, refuses any other. For another, when she made her move I applauded and was delighted.
For me The Edge of Summer is a keeper.
Author Bio: VIOLA SHIPMAN is the pen name for internationally bestselling author Wade Rouse. Wade is the author of fourteen books, which have been translated into 21 languages and sold over a million copies around the world. Wade chose his grandmother’s name, Viola Shipman as a pen name to honor the woman whose heirlooms and family stories inspire his fiction. The last Viola Shipman novel, The Secret of Snow (October 2021), was named a Best Book of Fall by Country Living Magazine and a Best Holiday Book by Good Housekeeping.
Wade hosts the popular Facebook Live literary happy hour, “Wine & Words with Wade,” every Thursday at 6:30 p.m. EST on the Viola Shipman author page where he talks writing, inspiration and welcomes bestselling authors and publishing insiders.