Sunflower Summer

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Title: Sunflower Summer
Series: Postcards From Misty Harbor Inn
Author: Evangeline Kelley
Publisher: Guideposts
Published: April 1, 2013
Pages: 272

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Misty Harbor Inn has officially opened and the Marris sisters face some tough decisions. Gracie Gold, the middle Marris sister, must decide if she wants to stay in Nantucket year-round or stay here only in the summer time. She struggles with being needed and having something to do, but it seems like she’s needed more than she knows. Especially in being a listening ear to boarders.

Caroline Marris also has to make some tough choices. After denying a proposal from her longtime friend, she is devastated to find he won’t be able to visit her this summer. Thinking he’s avoiding her because of her refusal to his marriage proposal, Caroline begins to question her decision and her opinion of her readiness. But she feels it might be too late to remedy what she possibly did to her friendship.

Sam Carter is blooming in the Misty Harbor Inn. She is baking and she even discovers a secret passageway in the back of a guest room closet. It contains items belonging to the mysterious previous owner, who disappeared suddenly and without a trace. Keeping herself busy by cooking, baking, and a new mystery on her hands Sam is content, happy even, to be a hotel owner.

Can Caroline decide whether she wants to be married or not? Will Gracie decide whether to live on the island permanently or will she decide to stay part-time only? Will the Marris sisters be able to solve the mystery of the widow who lived here before or will it remain a local mystery forever? Will their in be a success or will they fail?
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This book’s cover and plot was what first attracted me to this book, but the content bored me a little. It took about a quarter of the book to really pick up and that pick up didn’t really last that long. I liked the aspects of running the inn and parts of the mystery of the missing widow, but those didn’t really hold my attention for long. I think it might be because it’s hard for me to relate to the characters.

The characters were a bit older than me and for me it’s difficult to relate to a character that’s a lot older than me. Some of their attitudes were fun and young and easy to imagine in real life, but I just wasn’t able to connect with them. Maybe it was the lack of real character development or maybe it was me. I don’t quite know why I wasn’t able to connect with them, because I have fallen in love with older characters.

The storyline was a but jumbled to me. I think the book had too many side stories and not enough of a main story. It seemed a bit ambitious to start a storyline for each sister in one book, add on top of that the visitors’ story-lines and the mystery, it just seemed like too much for me. I don’t quite know what the main storyline was in this novel but it wasn’t big enough for me to detect it.

The one thing I did really enjoy about this book was the mystery about the missing widow. Even that kind of disappointed me. It started out with a lot of potential but ended on a flat note. Most of the leads end in dead ends and leaves everyone disappointed. I would’ve loved to have found out what happened to the lady but I think it’s being stretched to the third book. Oh well.

This author is actually a pen name for a group of four authors who collaborate together. I didn’t care much for their collaboration but I don’t think I was their target audience. A shame because I really wanted this on to be amazing. Though I don’t really recommend this one, I’m sure there is someone who is more the target audience that will recommend it. It just wasn’t for me.

Overall, this book wasn’t my cup of tea, but I’m sure there are some people more the target audience who loved it. I think this is perfect for older people who want a book that isn’t a romance. I don’t recommend this for anyone else other than middle-aged or older people. I give this book a two and a half out of five.

*I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for this review. all opinions expressed are my own.*

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