Wednesday, 27 June 2018

Review: The Summer Nanny by Holly Chamberlin

Set against the beautiful backdrop of coastal Maine, bestselling author Holly Chamberlin's heartwarming novel tells of friendship, family, lessons learned, and newfound love--all under a summer sky . . .
Every June, the quiet beach town of Ogunquit is overtaken by wealthy families who hire local young women like Amy Latimer and Hayley Franklin to care for their children. Best friends since childhood, Amy and Hayley are eager to secure lucrative summer jobs. Amy wants to finance her upcoming move to Boston. Hayley hopes to squirrel away enough money so that her mom can finally leave her abusive husband.

Amy is immediately in thrall to her dynamic boss, Cressida Prior, so different from Amy's mother, Leda. Though skilled at creating tapestries and rugs, Leda lacks confidence. But one thing she does know, after a painful summer long ago as a nanny herself, is how damaging a manipulative boss can be.

Hayley's employers, Jon and Marisa Whitby, are loving parents to their two-year-old twins. Jon also has a grown son by a previous marriage. Ethan is kind, handsome, and not least, wealthy. For the first time, Hayley, usually so selfless, can't help seeing him as an opportunity.

But the passing weeks bring complications and revelations, altering friendships, testing the bond between mothers and daughters, and proving that the ripples from a single season can last forever . . .

Paperback, 352 pages

Expected publication: June 26th 2018 by Kensington Publishing Corporation

Terri's Thoughts

I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you!  The story was just released.

The synopsis of this book sums things up pretty accurately.  It is a story of mothers and daughters and best friends and how those relationships can be put to the test so I am not going to spend a lot of time regurgitating the plot.  Instead I want to get straight to what bothered me the entire way through the story and that is Amy!

For lack of a better word, I can't believe how stupid Amy was.  Now that may be harsh but I remember when I was her age, it really wasn't that long ago and I can say that I was never as naïve as her.  I came from a very sheltered background yet I was able to form opinions on what was right and wrong and stand up for what was wrong.  It was so extreme that she almost read like a fourteen year old as opposed to a college graduate.  It got to the point that everything about her annoyed me as she let Cressida walk all over her and worse, worshipped her for it.  Then add to it, continue to stand quietly while witnessing the violent and abusive behavior Cressida bestowed on her family.  While you knew Amy would learn some lessons in the end, I had a difficult time rooting for Amy for being so immature.  On the flip side, she angered me so that I thought this story would make a good book club discussion.  I myself debated numerous things in my head.

Moving on to Hayley's story I had the complete opposite reaction.  I was in her corner from the very beginning and I completely understood where she was coming from as she tried to find ways to get her mother and herself out of their current circumstances.  I could easily forgive her with her fantasies of wealth and how it would answer all of her questions.  Heck, I fantasize about it also however I am doing it the old fashion way with a job.

Aside from how much Amy annoyed me, I enjoyed the rest of the story.  It was a fairly quick read and it led me to have many inner debates which is always a good thing.

About the Author

Holly Chamberlin is a native New Yorker, but she now lives in Portland, Maine - the aftermath of stumbling across Mr. Right at the one moment she wasn't watching the terrain. She's been writing and editing - poetry, children's fantasies, a romance novel or two, among many other genres and projects - her entire life. She has two cats, Betty and Cyrus, and when she's not writing her hobbies include reading, shopping, and cocktails at six. 


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