Summer at Rose Islandby Holly Martin

Paperback, 338 pages
Published May 13th 2016 by Bookouture
5 Stars

Synopsis: Fall in love with the gorgeous seaside town of White Cliff Bay this summer and enjoy long sunny days, beautiful beaches and… a little romance. Darcy Davenport is ready for a fresh start. Determined to leave a string of disastrous jobs and relationships behind her, she can’t wait to explore White Cliff Bay and meet the locals. As Darcy begins to swim daily in the crystal clear waters, she discovers the charming Rose Island lighthouse. But it’s not just the beautiful building that she finds so intriguing… Riley Eddison doesn’t want change. Desperate to escape the memories of his tragic past, he lives a life of solitude in the lighthouse. Yet he can’t help but notice the gorgeous woman swimming every day. Darcy is drawn to the mysterious and sexy Riley, but when it seems the town is trying to demolish his home, she soon finds herself having to pick sides. She’s fallen in love with White Cliff Bay. But is that all Darcy’s fallen for? Pull up a deck chair, sink back with a bowl of strawberry ice cream and pick up the summer read you won’t be able to put down.

My Review: This is the 3rd book in the White Cliff Bay trilogy, but you do not have to have read the first two to enjoy this one. I haven’t read them but will go back and read them now. In this story, Darcy Davenport has returned to live in the seaside resort town she used to visit as a child. She loved visiting her aunt, who was an artist, and was happiest in the water. Darcy’s parents are overbearing, stifling, dream killing and extremely critical of everything she does, whereas her aunt was the complete opposite. When Darcy was fired from her dream job as a Marine Biologist, her parents blamed her and her self-worth and confidence plummeted. She tried various jobs, but nothing worked. When she found herself a job in the White Cliff Bay area she took it in an effort to escape her parents and return to a place where she was happy. Darcy loves people and wears her heart on her sleeve. She wants to be liked and welcomed in the community and just being herself makes that happen quickly.

One thing she remembers is the importance of the Lighthouse in all her Aunt’s paintings. When she finds our that it is going to be torn down, she joins with the residents to save the Rose Island Lighthouse tower. The owner and builder was the Eddison family and Riley Eddison, an American has renovated the living space and is now living in it. Riley is running from problems he encountered in his small hometown in Texas. He craves the solitude of his ancestral family home, the lighthouse, and certainly didn’t anticipate the council compulsory purchase order taking it from him with the intention of demolishing it. Notices had been sent about this issue, but as no one was living in it at the time, there was no response and now it is too late. And then there was the red-haired mermaid that swam to his rocks and captured his heart, much to his chagrin. What is he to do.

I love Holly Martin’s writing, it is so descriptive. She pulls you right into the lives of the characters and the little town. I would love to visit there and meet these people. They are friendly, lovable, and real. I love how quickly news travels from one end of the town to the other, arriving before the person walking. The battle to save the Lighthouse was well written. Anyone who has joined a campaign to save something would feel the turmoil and anger of the residents as someone from outside their community comes along to make decisions.

I really enjoyed the development of Darcy and Riley’s relationship. Yes, it was love at first sight, but it was not acted upon. They had to get through some baggage, push aside some of their barriers and decide if their burgeoning love was enough to surmount the obstacles in their path. There were some unexpected twists in the story that I enjoyed and helped to show that relationships can survive if you are willing to fight for them. A thoroughly enjoyable romance. If you have not read this one, then it is a perfect summer read for any romance lover out there. The publisher generously provided me with a copy of this book via Netgalley.