The Summer Girls by Mary Alice Monroe
Marietta Muir, a dowager of Charleston society, looks to bring her three grown granddaughters together in the Low Country of South Carolina at Sullivan’s Island to celebrate her 80th birthday and to hopefully heal the past.
Sisters Carson, Eudora “Dora”, and Harper all have different mothers, but share the same father. They were close during the few summers they stayed at Mamaw’s Charleston home, Sea Breeze, and got to be “summer sisters.” However, they’d grown apart during recent years.
Dora, the oldest sister, has an autistic son, Nate, and a husband who left her. Harper, whose roots seem more Yankee than southern, disobeys her mother (who happens to be her boss) and goes anyway. Carson, a Hollywood photographer who is the first to arrive (and the main story of this novel), isn’t quite sure how she is going to pay for rent next month. When she gets Mamaw’s invite, she realizes how much she is ready to head to the east coast.
Will the three months they spend together on the island be enough for the girls to forge a bond or will the scars of the past be too deep?
Growing up not far from the coast, I’ve always been able to go to the beach when I needed it; there is something about the sand and the surf that calls me. So I definitely understood the feeling each of the woman felt. Monroe does a great job showing the complicated relationships sisters can have, and it’s the perfect story to set on the beach.
This is the first book in the trilogy, and I look forward to the next two installments. The Summer Girls is a great beach read and a must-have for your shelves this summer.
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