Book Review

California Summer

California Summer

Anita Hughes

St. Martin’s Press, Jun 2018

304 pages, Kindle, paperback

Contemporary romance, Women’s lit, Second chance romance



The cover is totally eye-catching as well as suitable to the story. A girl on the beach is just what I would expect to see. Though I’m disappointed it’s not a bit more imaginative. There are so many things that could be the focus of this cover such as a rose garden, fish tacos, a classic car, a beach at sunset, or a beach with surfers. This book is a visual feast.

The story is very good. It’s typical of Ms. Hughes, too. She does tend to start with a long-term relationship that has suddenly broken apart. Ben and Rosie have been together 10 years and they even look alike. Been is now becoming a hot Hollywood property as a director. Suddenly he doesn’t see Rosie as the woman to take him to the top. She discovers by the position of the sheets that he’s had another woman in their bed. He lies trying to deny it and then admits it saying that it’s nothing, but that maybe they need to take a break and reevaluate what they each want. Rosie packs and leaves, going to the house of her best friend Angelica’s parents, Oscar and Estelle Pullman. Living in the lap of luxury, beyond anything she’s ever experienced in her life, she’s helped to heal and decide what she wants for herself in life and to fall in love again.

Rosie is introduced to Estelle’s rose garden and all its wonders, she gets up close with some of the most expensive classic cars ever made in Oscar’s collection, she eats and drinks with some very famous people, and meets one of her greatest idols of all time. She rediscovers her love of cooking and feeds everyone her wonderful fish tacos with guacamole. She comes to understand what her challenges and interests really are and where she wants her life to go. And who she wants to do it with.

Ms. Hughes paces this very well. She alternates the happy with the angry and the sad. The love with the breakups. Alzheimer’s with new life. Through the whole story is the pace of life, sometimes it’s all coming down on your head and other days it’s all coming up daisies. Some days you get a little of both. Anita Hughes is an expert at writing stories at the pace of life and love. She’s the best summer reading or re-reading I know!

Highly Recommended.

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