The Edge of Summer by Viola Shipman

Cover of EDGE OF SUMMER by Viola Shipman
Viola Shipman
Star Rating
Reviewer's Rating
Jul 12, 2022

Welcome to #NewTitleTuesday, where we take a peek at a new title that hits the publishing world this week!

At the very height of summer, with outdoor temperatures at their peak, some patrons might need a book with a slightly slower pace.  Not a romance that burns up the pages with passion, or a thriller that burns up the pages with an edgy page. No, some patrons want something a bit cooler, a bit slower, something that immerses them in a story that serves as a cool, comfortable bath to take the edge off during these summer months. Your public library - and author Viola Shipman - has just the thing that you might need.

THE EDGE OF SUMMER is a feel-good novel about the secret history of families set in the Midwest from Viola Shipman, who previously wrote novels like 2020's THE HEIRLOOM GARDEN and 2019's THE SUMMER COTTAGE. Here, we begin with Sutton Douglas, a young woman who grew up poor in the Ozarks but with the help and guidance of her mother, a seamstress, she has a fledgling career as a local fashion designer. Sutton and her mom had only each other for support, as the rest of their family had died in a fire long ago. Or so we thought - when Sutton's mother dies, she finds a letter with clues that her extended family might exist after all, and she packs what bags she has and travels north to the resort town of Saugatuck on the shores of Lake Michigan in search of some answers.

There, she starts asking locals questions about her mom, and soon meets Miss Mabel, an older woman, at an estate sale while looking over jars of sewing buttons. Does Miss Mabel know anything about Sutton's mother? As she suspects Mabel might be hiding some secrets, the two women cautiously get to know each other, and a surprising relationshiop begins to form.

Not only is THE EDGE OF SUMMER a charming, lush, and immersive summer read, Shipman is excellent at establishing a sense of place - from the rural Ozark hills to the quietly bustling summer lakeside Michigan resort town squares, this novel is filled with people, characters, and atmosphere that readers are going to want to spend time with. (Plus, Shipman, has a nice back catalog of standalone titles if you're hungry for more.) If you want a nice, feel-good, emotion-filled summer story or are looking for small-town relationship fiction similar to those written by Elizabeth Berg or Mary Kay Andrews, place your holds.

We hope you enjoy, and thanks for using the library.

Reviewed by Gregg W.
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