Saturday, June 15, 2013

Barefoot Summer: Great Book for a Lazy Summer Day!

Barefoot Summer
by Denise Hunter
Chapel Springs series, Book 1
Christian Fiction / Contemporary / Romance
Available June 1
Thomas Nelson
336 pages

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About the Book
Madison’s heart has been closed for years. But one summer can change everything.

In the years since her twin brother’s drowning, Madison McKinley has struggled to put it behind her. Despite the support of her close-knit family and her gratifying job as a veterinarian in their riverside town, the loss still haunts her.

To find closure, Madison sets out to fulfill her brother’s dream of winning the town’s annual regatta. But first she has to learn to sail, and fast.

Beckett O’Reilly knows Madison is out of his league, but someone neglected to tell his heart. Now she needs his help—and he’ll give it, because he owes her far more than she’ll ever know.
Madison will do anything—even work with the infamous Beckett O’Reilly—to reach her goal. And as much as she’d like to deny it, the chemistry between them is electrifying. As summer wanes, her feelings for him grow and a fledgling faith takes root in her heart.

But Beckett harbors a secret that will test the limits of their new love. Can their romance survive summer’s challenges? And will achieving her brother’s dream give Madison the peace she desperately seeks?

My Thoughts
If you're looking for a book that will sweep you off your feet this summer, Barefoot Summer by Denise Hunter is the perfect choice! The plot intrigued me before I ever began reading the book. It just seemed like a unique mix of "issues" and challenges for two people to overcome. As I began reading, though, it sucked me in and I did NOT want to stop reading!!

Beckett was a little ... dreamy, shall we say? Sure, he's got this "bad boy" persona left over from high school, but he's misunderstood by a lot of people. When he offers to help Madison, I just knew I was in for a treat. I think it was about the time he began teaching her to swim—and so patiently!—that I knew we had a real "hero" on our hands!

Madison was an interesting character. I liked her right off the bat and really felt sorry for her at times. I can't imagine what it would be like to lose a sibling, much less a twin. She's tried to move past it, but hasn't really been able to overcome her grief. At times she grated on my nerves because she was so judgmental and a little harsh. But there were other moments when I really connected with her. As I kept reading, I realized that the author really did write Madison well ... even when I was annoyed with her, there were reasons for her behavior/attitudes, and I ended up really liking her.

As you might be able to tell, the characters really drive this book. They made the story for me! The romance was perfect. Plus, there's a great family dynamic that I'm hoping we get to see more of in the rest of the series.

By the end, Barefoot Summer had me itching for a lazy day at the lake (or on the river), which makes this the perfect book for summer! [5 stars]

I received a free copy of this book from Thomas Nelson and LitFuse Publicity in exchange for my fair and honest review.

About the Author
Denise lives in Indiana with her husband Kevin and their three sons. In 1996, Denise began her first book, a Christian romance novel, writing while her children napped. Two years later it was published, and she's been writing ever since. Her books often contain a strong romantic element, and her husband Kevin says he provides all her romantic material, but Denise insists a good imagination helps too!

Denise Hunter Online
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