Carly Summit’s name couldn’t be more fitting, since in life she always lands on top. She grew up wealthy and privileged in a tony Connecticut town, opened her own gallery in New York City, and is about to make art world history displaying previously unknown works by a prominent twentieth-century painter. No wonder she possesses a can-do attitude that can’t be soured.
Ford Sinclair is another story.
A military career in war-torn Africa, where he witnessed unspeakable violence and suffering, has left him haunted and deeply cynical. Now he’s looking for a way to forget and a place to belong. He hopes to find both back home in St. Dennis.
When Carly is forced to move the premiere of her new exhibition from Manhattan to St. Dennis, and Ford agrees to take charge of the town’s only newspaper, the two cross paths. But it’s hardly the start of a beautiful friendship. While Ford can’t ignore her charms, Carly’s unflappable good cheer only confounds him. Yet beneath Ford’s stormy brooding, Carly sees a man worth caring about—even if her warmest ways can’t thaw his frozen heart.
A special Thank you to Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine Books and NetGalley for an advanced reading copy in exchange for an honest review.
Having read all the Chesapeake Diaries Series by Mariah Stewart, always look forward to catching up with Grace (who knows all there is to know about everyone in town), other favorites, and the charming quaint town of St. Dennis, for #8, “On Sunset Beach.”
Grace starts out her diary entry, excited about her son Ford making his way back to Virginia to meet with someone, after being away with his military career in Africa, who is still having issues with his haunted experience and needless to say, he is looking for a hideaway to escape, not to be charming.
Of course, there is always so many people which come from the big city to this small quaint town (wow, they attract some talent here). The main character, being Carly (a friend of Ellie-from “The Long Way Home”) who owns an art gallery in New York, and will be displaying previously unknown works by a prominent 21st century painter. However, she is not thrilled when she has to move the premier of her new exhibition from Manhattan to St. Dennis.
Of course, Ford is helping out with the newspaper and has to interview Carly and the two definitely do not hit it off in the beginning. Ford sees her charm and outgoing nature, and of course he has no personality, yet Carly finds a way to dig beyond the rough exterior to warm his heart.
A light heartwarming beach read - I would recommend to fans of Debbie Macomber, Sherryl Woods, and Susan Mallery. Each book can be a standalone within the Chesapeake Diaries’ series; however, nice to read them all and catch up with a few of the longtime residents such as the famous Dallas, Clay/Lucy, Dan, etc.
As usual, Grace always ends with her famous diary entry, recapping the town’s progress, and the gossip of family and friends, as well as future plans, hopes and dreams --until next time.