A young wife retreats to a secluded family home to reevaluate her marriage.
In her debut novel, Hymes presents a conflicted young woman who is beginning to question her humdrum existence. As the book opens, Theresa Alston Crandall inherits her grandmother’s house on Cape Cod. Theresa decides to drive from Virginia to Massachusetts, without her husband, to see what she can learn about her deceased grandmother she hadn’t seen in many years and the mother who died when she was only a small child. Theresa’s father took her away from the Cape a few years after her mother’s death, claiming it was too painful for him to remain at the site of all his memories. He raised Theresa on his own, refusing to divulge details to his daughter about the life they left behind. Now, her father has recently died. With her grandmother also dead, Theresa feels very much alone, and utterly disconnected from her husband. As soon as she steps foot in her grandmother’s home, she can intuit that the dwelling is rife with history and meaning. She immediately feels a sense of belonging just looking through the many unusual and cluttered rooms. Shortly after arriving on the Cape, she begins meeting locals, including certain men who make her feel alive and desirable for the first time in ages. She explores relationships with a couple of these guys as she simultaneously dives deeper into the shocking secrets replete in her family’s past. Throughout this breezy, sun-soaked novel, the author touches on weightier issues than the reader might expect (at one point, Theresa tells a prospective lover: “I believe that heaven is a mental concept that we can experience here and now, and our home should definitely be tied to it”). From grief and loss to forgiveness and redemption, Hymes does not hold back. The author steers clear of predictable outcomes in this unexpected story, providing ample romantic suspense and witty prose to keep the reader turning pages. Chock-full of rich descriptions of the New England coast, as well as surprising scandals and an adorable dog named Gypsy, the book should satisfy even seasoned beach readers.
A captivating and uplifting tale best suited for fans of meaningful beach-town romances.