FICTION

The Summer That Made Us

Mira: Harlequin. Oct. 2017. 336p. ISBN 9780778331049. $26.99; pap. ISBN 9780778330868. $15.99; ebk. ISBN 9781488023644. F
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Multiple RITA Award winner Carr ("Virgin River" series) continues to explore the connections that women build with one another in her latest stand-alone novel. Not as romantic as some of her other titles, Carr's latest instead narrows in on the tangled and intimate bonds of three generations of women in a large family, especially the circumstances that can make or break the strongest relationships. With an abundance of female characters—two sisters marry two brothers and each of the sisters has three daughters (double cousins)—and motivations, the many plotlines, mysteries, and time jumps can be a bit confusing, but the main focus is on family and the last summer they were all together, the one summer at their shared lake house where everything changed. That is the pivot that eventually pulls the threads together into a compelling and deeply satisfying conclusion.
VERDICT Multiple time lines and points of view, along with a cast of many women, can make this difficult to follow, but readers who enjoy piecing together complex family stories with realistically flawed characters should enjoy this. [See Prepub Alert, 4/10/17.]

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