Title: The Light in Summer by Mary McNear
Butternut Lake Series Book Five
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
Genre: Contemporary, Women’s Fiction, Romance
Length: 384 pages
Book Rating: B+
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through Edelweiss
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Mary McNear brings you home to Butternut Lake and a novel filled with irresistible characters who you will want to call your friends.
It’s summertime on Butternut Lake, where the heat of noon is soothed by the cool breezes of the evening, where the pace grows slower, and sometimes, just sometimes, the summer light makes everything clearer…
For the lovely Billy Harper, Butternut Lake is the place she feels most at home, even though lately she feels the only one listening to her is Murphy…her faithful Labrador Retriever. Her teenage son, Luke, has gone from precious to precocious practically overnight. Her friends are wrapped up in their own lives, and Luke’s father, Wesley, disappeared before his son was even born. No wonder she prefers to spend time with a good book, especially ones where everything ends in perfection.
But Billy is about to learn that anything is possible during the heady days of summer. Coming to terms with her past—the death of her father, the arrival of Cal Cooper, a complicated man with a definite interest in Billy, even the return of Wesley, will force her to have a little bit of faith in herself and others…and realize that happiness doesn’t always mean perfection.
The Light in Summer, the newest addition to Mary McNear’s delightful Butternut Lake series, is another heartwarming novel of family, love and new beginnings. Although this latest release is the fifth in the series, it can be read as a standalone.
Single mom and head librarian Billy Harper is going through a bit of rough patch with her thirteen year old son Luke. The normally co-operative and outgoing teen is hanging out with the wrong crowd, getting into trouble and refusing to talk to his mom. So when Billy meets Cal Cooper at a wedding, she is not sure the timing is right to bring a new man into their lives, but can she ignore the sparks that are flying between them?
After Billy unexpectedly became pregnant just as she finishing high school, her parents were extremely supportive and helpful. However, five years earlier, Billy knew the time was right for her and Luke to strike out on their own and they moved to Butternut Lake. She and Luke have always been close so she is deeply trouble by the recent changes in her soon and she is at a loss as she tries to bridge the gap between them. Billy has not dated much over the years and she is quite surprised by how much she enjoys spending time with Cal. The timing is definitely not right for a new relationship but Billy finds Cal much too irresistible to resist.
Cal’s life is in the midst of huge upheaval when he decides to spend the summer in Butternut Lake. He is looking forward to relaxing as he contemplates the next stage in his life. Like Billy, Cal is not really looking for love but he is quite open to exploring their unexpected attraction. His laidback and easygoing acceptance of the complications in her life is quite refreshing but will their romance last once summer is over?
The Light in Summer is an engrossing, feel-good read that old and new fans of the Butternut Lake series are going to love. The characters are multi-dimensional with realistic strengths and true to life problems to overcome. Butternut Lake is a wonderfully charming community with eclectic yet caring residents. Cal and Billy are appealing protagonists and their relationship is an absolute joy to watch unfold. Mary McNear continues to keep this wonderful series fresh and inviting with interesting storylines and the introduction of new characters. Another outstanding visit in Butternut Lake that will leave readers grinning from ear to ear as Cal, Billy and Luke’s story comes to an uplifting conclusion.