Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 7/1/2014
My Rating: 4 Stars
An abandoned baby, a glorious old Newport mansion, and awakening romance combine in Breakwater Bay, an engaging story that echoes the flair, humor, and emotional depth of Kristin Hannah’s popular novels.
Preservationist Meri Hollis loves her latest project, restoring one of Newport’s forgotten Gilded Age mansions. And with summer approaching, she’ll be able to spend more time with her Gran on the Rhode Island shore. She has a great job, a loving family and she’s pretty sure her boyfriend is going to propose on her thirtieth birthday.
But everything Meri believes about family, happiness, truth, and love is shattered when her family’s darkest secret is exposed.Thirty years before, Meri’s neighbor and friend, Alden Corrigan, took his father’s dinghy out to fish. In a sudden storm, he rushed to help a woman stranded on the breakwater. She was just a girl . . . a very pregnant girl who disappeared soon after they reached safety—but not before she left behind a very special gift.
Now that the truth it out, life will change for everyone in Breakwater Bay, and Meri and Alden will have to make decisions that could insure their future together . . . or separate them for good.
BREAKWATER BAY, takes readers back to the coastal area of Rhode Island, Newport's forgotten Gilded Age Mansions, where we pick up from Newport Dreams (novella)--I would recommend reading prior to Breakwater Bay.
Newport Dreams featured Geordie (a photographer) who comes to work on a restoration project called The Gilbert House. There she meets Bruce, Doug, and the two girls featured in Breakwater Bay –Carlyn and main character, Meri.
BREAKWATER BAY opens with Meri’s thirtieth birthday, a preservationist restoring this mansion back to its glory, uncovers hidden gems (both in the building as well as her life). She enjoys spending time with her Gram at Candler Farm and her neighbor, Alden who has been a friend since she was a child. Little does she know his deep connection to this family.
However after her surprise birthday party, she drives out to her Gram’s house to continue the celebration, and gets the shock of her life. She finds out she was adopted and her Gram and her step-dad gives her letters from her mom, who died several years ago.
Everything changes for Meri. She now has to figure out her past, and her real family and her own identity. In addition, the current boyfriend, Peter is going off to law school and she is not sure she even wants a future with him.
However, there is more about her past as she begins to uncover dark family secrets. At the same time, she finds her relationship with her Gram’s next door neighbor, may be more than just friendship.
BREAKWATER BAY is a thought provoking novel about choices. One woman who found herself pregnant from a rich family –she is not allowed to be with the father of her baby, one teenage boy who helped this pregnant woman and saved her life and kept his promise, and another mother who lost her own baby, and a mother and daughter who make a choice which will forever affect another life.
A multi-generational story of three generations of woman, each with tough choices and each with a different perspective. I loved the character, Gram, as she was definitely the foundation of this family and opened her heart and home to Meri and her friends, and can only image the secret she has kept, as she protected her daughter and her granddaughter.
This is my fifth book by Noble, and she does not disappoint, as she is the queen of restoration—with transformations, of old to new, from places, things, to lives of her rich characters.
If readers enjoy the Newport’s Gilded Age, you may want to read A Sense of Entitlement by Anna Loan-Wilsey (a mystery), where you will learn more about this era.
Fans of Mary Alice Monroe, Patti Callahan Henry, Joanne DeMaio, Karen White and Wendy Wax will appreciate Noble’s subject matter and writing style, for a relaxing summer beach read!