Friday, May 24, 2019

Review: The Summer Retreat by Sheila Roberts

Publication Date: April 23rd 2019 by MIRA
Pages: 384
Source: Publisher and Audible Purchase
Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Audible

About the book:

Join USA TODAY bestselling author Sheila Roberts for a seaside escape to the beaches of Moonlight Harbor
Celeste Jones has plans for a perfect summer with her boyfriend (and hopefully soon-to-be fiancĂ©)—until he dumps her to be with the woman he’s had on the side for months. Heartbroken and furious, Celeste resolves to move on. When the going gets tough, the tough…okay, the not-so-tough go to the beach.
As soon as school lets out for the summer, she waves goodbye to her first-graders, packs up her bikini and heads for Moonlight Harbor, where she knows her big sister, Jenna, will receive her with open arms. Jenna could probably use some help at the Driftwood Inn, and Celeste is happy to do chores around the place in exchange for a relaxing summer escape. She just needs something—or someone—to distract her from her troubles.
Finding The One can be tricky, and Jenna is determined to make sure Celeste gets it right this time around. Not that Jenna’s an expert. She’s still trying to sort out her own love life. But if both sisters listen to their hearts, eventually they’re bound to discover that life—and love—is good at the beach.

My Thoughts:
Celeste has been burned her boyfriend, a man she thought would propose only to find he’s been cheating on her.  In response, she ventures out to Moonlight Harbor, the seaside town her sister has settled into after purchasing an inn.  Celeste, a teacher, takes the summer off to help at the inn while trying to figure out where she’s gone wrong in her love life.  She had sparks and chemistry with her last beau, but that just ended in heartache so she decides to go for the safer bet, the town’s pastor, Paul.  He’s good-looking and even if he doesn’t make her heart race, he’s a steady and sure bet, not someone likely to cheat on her.  Not like Henry, the guest in cabin twelve, an annoying man, poking and prodding at every turn, but one that heats her up!

The Summer Retreat was an entertaining read, kind of a Hallmark movie type of romance, where lots of things go wrong and are a bit whacky. I quickly flipped (listened) through the pages, but this is one of those stories where I had mixed feelings.  I felt bad for Celeste because she was duped by a cheating loser at the beginning, but I was also annoyed with her.  She ignores her instincts that tell her she’s not a good match for the Pastor Paul but goes along with the “romance” because he’s the safe bet, a man who’ll never cheat.  I don’t like reading a romance where the heroine is all tied up with one man while she’s meant to be with another. It was clear to me and should’ve been clear to Celeste that Pastor Paul wasn’t the guy for her, and yet the situation plays out for almost the entire book.

I was also irritated with her sister, Jenna, who kept pushing her toward Paul when Celeste didn’t seem all that hot on him.  I have to say Jenna’s romantic situation is another frustration: a love triangle, that wasn’t resolved in this story. Maybe it will be in the next book?

It does sound like I didn’t really like the story after writing all of my complaints, but I did. I’m happy for how things turned out for Celeste, and I did have some laughs along the way.  I switched back and forth from my e-copy to the audio book and found Ann Gideon’s voice pleasant and upbeat.

3 Suns


  1. This sounds like one of those light reads to pass the time but nothing particularly memorable. I’m like you in that I get annoyed when a main character continues to stick with a love interest that is clearly not meant to be.

    1. Yes, perfect beach read where you can people watch a bit and read at the same time. For some reason I don't mind this type of thing in a Hallmark movie, lol.

  2. I get mumbling at a character, too, when they are so busy protecting themselves from one mistake that they are ready to fall into a whole different one. Glad it was still a light and fun one in spite of that.

  3. I think I'd find this one too frustrating to enjoy for all the reasons that irritated you. :)

  4. A few laughs along the way is always good to have

  5. I can see why the main character frustrated you. I think that happens in real life too. People that have been burned sometimes go for the "safe" choice. I'm glad that you enjoyed the story overall. Hallmark movies are fun! Great Review Rachel!

    Lindy@ A Bookish Escape

  6. Aw, poor Paul. I'd be annoyed that they kind of push them together throughout the book too. Thanks for sharing.