Thursday, July 11, 2013

Review of "Barefoot Summer" by Denise Hunter

Rating: 4 Stars
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Review:  Denise Hunter delivers another captivating novel in "Barefoot Summer," the first book in her newest series, "A Chapel Hill Romance."  True to its title, this novel evokes images of carefree, childhood summers full of innocence and fun that were spent at the river or beach.  "Barefoot  Summer"  is not just a lighthearted romance, but an emotional journey of two young adults, Beckett and Madison, with an entwined past shadowed by tragedy, heartache, and painful secrets.  

As a reader, I was immediately drawn into the story with Hunter's portrayal of Madison McKinley  
as a successful and grounded daughter in her closely-bonded family.  The warm interactions with her siblings and parents are in stark contrast to Beckett O'Reilly's broken family and shadowed past.  By telling the story through both Beckett's and Madison's perspectives, I sympathized with both individuals and wanted them to overcome the heartaches and emotional obstacles in their path.

Denise Hunter is an author who consistently delivers novels with emotional depth, a plot that develops at a steady pace, and a satisfying conclusion.  After meeting other friends and family members in "Barefoot Summer," I am eagerly anticipating her next novel in the "Chapel Springs" series.  I am very intrigued by Madison's sister, Jade, and her story that awaits within the pages of "Dancing with Fireflies," set to be released April 2014.     

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Thomas Nelson Publishers through Book Sneeze. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed above are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Summary from Thomas Nelson Publishers: 
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?

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