Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Review: Up At Butternut Lake

Up At Butternut Lake
The Butternut Trilogy #1
by Mary McNear

Why did you choose this book? the book blurb comparison to Kristin Hannah
When did you read this book? April 2014
Who should read this book? readers who enjoy ‘women’s fiction’
Here is a synopsis of Up At Butternut Lake from TLC Book Tours

In the tradition of Kristin Hannah and Susan Wiggs, Mary McNear introduces readers to the town of Butternut Lake and to the unforgettable people who call it home.

It’s summer, and after ten years away, Allie Beckett has returned to her family’s cabin beside tranquil Butternut Lake, where as a teenager she spent so many carefree days. She’s promised her five-year-old son, Wyatt, they will be happy there. She’s promised herself this is the place to begin again after her husband’s death in Afghanistan. The cabin holds so many wonderful memories, but from the moment she crosses its threshold Allie is seized with doubts. Has she done the right thing uprooting her little boy from the only home he’s ever known?

Allie and her son are embraced by the townsfolk, and her reunions with old acquaintances—her friend Jax, now a young mother of three with one more on the way, and Caroline, the owner of the local coffee shop—are joyous ones. And then there are newcomers like Walker Ford, who mostly keeps to himself—until he takes a shine to Wyatt . . . and to Allie.

Everyone knows that moving forward is never easy, and as the long, lazy days of summer take hold, Allie must learn to unlock the hidden longings of her heart, and to accept that in order to face the future she must also confront—and understand—what has come before.

My Review

If you are looking for a light summer read, this book is a perfect choice! It has a small-town setting, the characters are friendly and likeable, and the problems are relatively minor and easily solved. Just grab your cool beverage of choice and settle into your lounger by pool and enjoy!

But what makes this book special is that if you AREN’T looking for a light read, if you want MORE from a book, you can get it with this one! The book has discussion questions at the end that will help you dig deeper, if that is what you are looking to do. Book clubs will enjoy this one as a summer selection! (I suggest holding your meeting poolside!)

There are three related storylines going on with this book, and as you probably can guess, there are some happy endings here. Some of it was a little predictable, but that is expected with a summer romance, and it is the journey that makes the book worthwhile! As you come to know the characters and the town you will wish you could stay. If that is how you feel after reading this one, you are in luck. You can’t stay but you CAN go back and visit Butternut Lake again! This is the first in a series, with the second book due to be out later this summer. I’m hoping to have a little more resolution to the storyline with Caroline when the series continues! Add this one to your summer reading list!

About Mary McNear

Mary McNear lives in San Francisco with her husband, two teenage children, and a high-strung, minuscule white dog named Macaroon. She writes her novels in a local doughnut shop, where she sips Diet Pepsi, observes the hubbub of neighborhood life, and tries to resist the constant temptation of freshly made doughnuts. She bases her novels on a lifetime of summers spent in a small town on a lake in the northern Midwest.

Connect with Mary on Facebook.

My Rating:  ★★★1/2   3-1/2 Stars

This book review is included in a tour by TLC Book Tours. I received a copy of the book in return for an honest review, which you can read above.

Mary’s Tour Stops

Tuesday, April 15th: She’s Got Books on Her Mind
Wednesday, April 16th: Bibliotica
Thursday, April 17th: Kritters Ramblings
Monday, April 21st: Stephany Writes
Wednesday, April 23rd: A Chick Who Reads
Thursday, April 24th: Peeking Between the Pages
Tuesday, April 29th: Walking With Nora
Wednesday, April 30th: A Bookish Way of Life
Thursday, May 1st: missris
Friday, May 2nd: A Novel Review
Monday, May 5th: Always With a Book
Tuesday, May 6th: From the TBR Pile
Wednesday, May 7th: Time 2 Read
TBD: Book Journey

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  1. I think this sounds like a great summer choice as well.

  2. This sounds like a wonderful summertime read! I'm glad you enjoyed it.

    Thanks for being on the tour.

  3. Butternut Lake sounds very picturesque. This sounds like a great book. I'm glad you liked it.