THE SUMMER LIST by Amy Mason Doan


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Seventeen years ago, Laura Christie suddenly fled her home on the lake of beautiful Coeur-de-Lune. But she cannot resist an invitation back to see her estranged best friend.

Adopted by an older couple, Laura had chafed under her mother’s strict, religious rules, not to mention the school bullies. So when red-haired Casey and her artistic, flighty mom, Alex, moved into the run-down house everyone called The Shipwreck, just across the lake, Laura was intrigued. Soon the girls were the best of friends, and Alex—too young to remember she was supposed to impose rules—was included in most of their shenanigans. With Casey and Alex at her side, Laura shook off her shyness, creating a new, vibrant family yet fracturing her relationship with her adoptive parents. Now 35, Casey and Laura need to mend their friendship, and Alex, with the help of Laura’s ex-boyfriend J.B., has designed a scavenger hunt to help them. The hunt sends them to all of their old haunts, including the restaurant where Casey first came out to Laura and the roller-skating rink where Laura first met J.B. Looming behind their summer reunion, however, is the question of Laura’s biological parentage. Threading the tale of Laura's biological mother throughout the novel, her debut, Doan builds toward the revelation by tightening the bond between Laura and Casey, whose mothers turn out to have been friends, too. Resisting their own mothers’ religious constraints, these women of the 1980s found each other at summer camp, forging a strong bond. Without judgment, Doan carefully portrays their living in a commune with one of Coeur-de-Lune’s sons. Casey and Laura learn how their own mothers faced parental disapproval, teenage pregnancy, and drug use to accept why only Casey’s mom could take on motherhood.

A poignant tale of mothers and daughters finding their ways home to each other.

Pub Date: June 26th, 2018
ISBN: 978-1-525-80425-0
Page count: 384pp
Publisher: Graydon House
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15th, 2018


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