On sale: September 2017
#1 New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Robyn Carr is back with THE SUMMER THAT MADE US, a powerful multi-generational story about mothers and daughters, sisters and cousins, and the ties that bind us together forever. Everyone has a summer they’ll never forget, and for the women of the Hempstead family, this has never been more viscerally true.
For Louise and Jo Hempstead—sisters who married brothers and each had three daughters— summers at Lake Waseka were the happiest of times, filled with days of boating, swimming races, and the sound of children laughing. For years, the lake was the place where the women and their daughters loved each other the most. But when an unthinkable tragedy strikes in the form of an accidental drowning, the family closes up the lake house for good, never to return.
Now, more than 25 years later, Louise’s daughter Meg is sick with cancer and enlists her sister, Charlene, to reopen the lake house and gather the family for one last summer at the lake. But years of pain and unspoken grief have pulled the Hempstead women in different directions, away from each other: Meg might be dying; Charlene is unexpectedly jobless; Hope is reckoning with the break-down of her marriage; Krista has just returned from a long prison sentence; Beverly is still traumatized by the drowning; and Louise and Jo haven’t been close in years.
But blood is thicker than water, and Charlene hopes that time and family might be able to heal even the deepest wounds. In this beautifully woven story about the complexities of family dynamics and female relationships, return to the lake with the Hempstead girls for a season of healing, second chances, and finally making peace with the past.
So much heaviness in this book with depressions, illnesses, pregnancy, and more yet what sticks most with me is the family coming together, putting their histories behind them and rallying around those who need them.
The dynamics of the Hempstead family is interesting. They have been torn apart by the drama of their pasts and now must figure out how to come together as a unit. There is a lot of history to get past and many families would not be strong enough to overcome it but the Hempstead family does with a lot of hard work.
The Summer That Made Us is an emotional rollercoaster. I had tears; there was fear, lots of love, and mostly hopefulness. It was intense and filled with so much feeling. Each character had their own issues, some life threatening, some life changing, but all equally important to the story. I was in awe of how Robyn managed to weave these stories together to make it complete. She was able to take different walks of life and turn them into a total package that I could not put down.
I would recommend picking up your own copy of The Summer That Made Us ASAP.
Thank you Claire McLaughlin from Little Bird Publishing and NetGalley for a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
Robyn Carr is an award-winning, #1 New York Times bestselling author of more than 50 novels, including the critically acclaimed Virgin River and Thunder Point series, as well as highly praised women’s fiction titles such as Four Friends, What We Find, and The Life She Wants.
Robyn has won a RITA Award from the Romance Writers of America, and in 2016 she was awarded RWA’s Nora Roberts Lifetime Achievement Award for her contributions to the genre. Her novels have been translated into 19 languages in 30 countries.
Originally from Minnesota, Robyn now resides in Henderson, Nevada, with her aviator husband; they have two grown children. When she isn’t writing, Robyn puts her energy into community service: she has mentored a seniors’ memoir-writing group, attends book club chats in and out of state whenever possible, and is working with her local library on the Carr Chat Series, a program centered on fundraising and visiting author events that bring writers, their books, and the community together.