by Brenda Novak
The Bookstore at the Beach is the second title that I have read by Ms. Novak, following her earlier novel, One Perfect Summer. As was true of that book, this is a long (448 pages) story that is filled with plot and character.
Readers follow and get to know the lives, struggles and joys of three generations of women from one family. The oldest is Mary. She runs a bookstore in a small town and leads a fairly insular life. Mary is not a risk taker. Why? What happened to her in the past that formed her attitudes and character? No spoilers so you have to read the book to find out.
Next up is Autumn, Mary’s daughter. She has come with her two children to spend time with Mary over the summer. Readers learn early on that Autumn’s husband has been missing for nineteen months, most likely related to his travel in Ukraine. Should Autumn hold on to hope that he will come back or…should she again become involved with her high school crush who lives in the town where Autumn is summering?
Finally there is Taylor, Autumn’s daughter. She was feeling numb and engaged in sexual activity without using birth control. Is she pregnant? If yes, how will this define her life? There is also a strong plot line about Taylor’s friendship with Sierra as Taylor wonders if she is in love with her.
The author holds onto all of the many plot strands without losing any of them. She tells a story that has some depth and that held my interest.
Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for this title. All opinions are my own.