The Summer of New Beginnings (A Magnolia Grove Novel) by @betteleecrosby #ContemporaryFiction #NetGalley #FridayReads

Author: Bette Lee Crosby

Due for Publication on 27th March by Lake Union Publishing

Category: Contemporary Fiction, Family, Romance, Book Review

Aspiring journalist Meghan Briggs has always been the responsible one in the family. So when her father passes away unexpectedly, leaving behind his at-risk business, she steps up to save his legacy—even if that means putting her own dreams on hold.

Tracy couldn’t be more different from her sister. She’s always been the rebellious type, without much direction in life. But in the wake of her latest romantic disaster, she finds herself moving back home as a single mother.

The Summer of New Beginnings is a sweet, touching story of the sometimes difficult situations that beset the Briggs family.

Sisters Tracy and Meghan Briggs are totally different from each other. When their father dies suddenly Megan, the responsible and sensible sister, and gives up her dream of going to the Grady College at the University of Georgia, with a view to a career in journalism, to continue the little business George Briggs set up after his first heart attack. He resigned from his job as a stockbroker and bought a small local magazine, seeing it as a less stressful option to make a living. George couldn’t help himself, though, and the magazine was expanded to a point when he needed extra help. 

Grady was my dream, but seeing the Snip ’N’ Save flourish was Daddy’s, and I’m not going to let it die along with him. He’d want me to keep it alive, and that’s exactly what I’m go to do.

Meghan’s saviour and comfort is a little pup that she rescues from drowning, but it also brings back the heartbreaking memories of losing her childhood dog. Until she knows for certain whether or not she will be able to keep the pup, she lives in dread of someone coming forward to claim him.

Tracy is more of a wild child, and Lila, her mother, was never the disciplinarian. She loves her daughters but it was George that kept them in line. Tracy becomes increasingly independent and her decision to move away with her less than reliable boyfriend, Dominic, causes Lila and Meghan ongoing concern, which is realised when Tracy moves back home with her young son, Lucas. Now that Tracy is a mother herself, she appreciates her own mother only wanted the best for her. 

Even though they’re a family again, life doesn’t run smoothly for the Briggs ladies. But through all the highs and lows, the bond between Lila, Tracy and Meghan grows stronger as characters develop. Baby Lucas’ problems were dealt with sympathetically and thoughtfully. As always with Bette Lee Crosby’s books, the author manages to convey warmth and love with empathetic characters that highlight the things that are most important in life. I enjoy Ms Crosby’s approach of writing mostly in the third person with sections from the first person perspective of specific individuals, which gives a real insight into the characters. The Summer of New Beginnings hasn’t quite got the punch of the author’s earlier novels but is, nevertheless, a charming read.

I chose to read and review The Summer of New Beginnings based on an advance reader copy supplied by Liane Worthington and NetGalley. 

Book links ~ Amazon UK | Amazon US

It is the wit and wisdom of that Southern Mama Crosby brings to her works of fiction; the result is a delightful blend of humor, mystery and romance along with a cast of quirky charters who will steal your heart away. Her work was first recognized in 2006 when she received The National League of American Pen Women Award for a then unpublished manuscript. She has since gone on to win twenty awards for her work; these include: The Royal Palm Literary Award, the FPA President’s Book Award Gold Medal, Reader’s Favorite Award Gold Medal, and the Reviewer’s Choice Award.

Author links ~ WebsiteFacebook | Twitter | Goodreads

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