Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Review: That Chesapeake Summer by Mariah Stewart

That Chesapeake Summer (Chesapeake Diaries, Book #9)
by Mariah Stewart
Release Date: June 23rd 2015
2015 Pocket Books
Ebook Edition; 384 Pages
ISBN: 978-1476792576
Genre: Fiction / Comtemporary
Source: Review copy from publisher

3.5 / 5 Stars

Jamie Valentine is the wildly successful author of self-help books advocating transparency in every relationship. But when her widowed mother passes away unexpectedly, Jamie discovers her own life has been based on a lie. Angry and deeply betrayed, she sets out to find the truth—which may be in a small town on the Chesapeake Bay. Cutting her most recent book tour short, Jamie books a room at the Inn at Sinclair’s Point, just outside St. Dennis.

The death of Daniel Sinclair’s father forced him to take over the family inn, and his wife’s death left him a single parent of two children, so there’s little room for anything else in his life. His lovely new guest is intriguing, though, and he’s curious about the secret she’s clearly hiding. But in the end, Jamie and Dan could discover the greatest truth of all: that the search for one thing just might lead to the find of a lifetime—if you keep your heart open.

My Thoughts
That Chesapeake Summer continues the Chesapeake Diaries, featuring various residents from the area of St. Dennis, but can definitely be read as a stand-alone novel.  Going back and reading some of the other stories would be fun as some of the characters show up in this novel, but they have little or no impact to the story.  It is one of the things that I like about this series.

This novel was another fun addition to the series and this time, it features Jamie, a woman who unexpectedly discovers she was adopted after her mother passes away, and Dan, a man who is living with his own secrets for many years.  As Jamie tracks down the truth to her own background, it ultimately takes her to St. Dennis, where she meets a number of fairly interesting characters.  I actually thought the author handled Jamie's discovery and her reactions to this discovery quite well.  The themes of acceptance, loss, truth, lies, betrayal, families, and secrets seemed to abound in this novel and I really liked the concepts that were discussed surrounding these issues; it made you think how important some of these issues really are in your own relationships.  

I really liked Jamie, even if she was a bit naive about a few things, but she was certainly compassionate and I empathized with her on many different levels.  I also thought Grace was a fun character, but as always, tend to be a bit leery of her 'sixth sense' as it always seems to be a bit too convenient.  I wasn't crazy however, about the romantic aspect to this novel, and could have been quite happy without it.  Dan didn't strike me as being the very sympathetic, and to be honest, he spent quite a bit of time being grumpy, which wasn't very endearing.  I also don't buy into these two-week romance things when it is just assumed the rest of your life is settled and that you will be together forever kind of deals.  One minute they were bickering, and then the next, the two of them were deciding their futures together?  Wait a minute. Where's the passion? The romance? And everything else that goes with it?  With more development, the romance would have added quite a bit to the storyline, but the way it was left me skipping over it and looking forward to the sections where Jamie was searching for her birth mother - more interesting.  

Overall, That Chesapeake Summer was interesting and is another entry in a series that never fails to make me want to book a room for a month and visit for a while (if only the Inn were real.)  The story was engaging and is a light beach read for anyone looking to pick up something for a holiday read.


  1. I haven't picked up any of her books, but I've seen them around.