Anyone looking for a great beach read won't be disappointed if they pick up Boardwalk Summer. The cover alone was enough to grab my attention, and the story does not disappoint.
Moving back and forth in time seamlessly, we meet Mari, a young single mother who is working as a waitress and living with her parents who are helping her raise her four year old daughter. We also meet Violet, a newly married woman who wants to make it big in Hollywood, despite her husband's control over her. Although these women's lives don't appear connected and are separated by decades, their stories are intertwined in more than one way.
Mari's grandfather was a famous performer in the 1940s in Santa Cruz. After his death Mari learns more about his life and finds a letter from Violet Harcourt. Mari comes across a newspaper article about Violet's suicide shortly after giving up her dreams of Hollywood and returning to her husband.
As Mari works to preserve a gazebo important to the Hispanic population of Santa Cruz, she also starts a relationship with someone new - her first romance with anyone since having her daughter.
Violet's story is uncovered slowly as Jaeger alternates the telling of this story between the present day and 1940. We see Violet's dreams dashed and her husband's violence toward her. I feared the worst, already having read the obituary in the chapter narrated by Mari. And yet, Jaeger manages to connect Violet's story to Mari's in a way I didn't anticipate.
I loved this book. I loved how the stories are woven together. I loved that I didn't anticipate all the ways the two stories were connected until the end. I loved the romance between Jason and Mari. I loved the history that Jaeger slips in about Santa Cruz. I loved the time period - the Golden Age of Hollywood- that Violet's story is set in. I loved that I felt transported to the time and place of both stories.
This book is perfect for the beach - or for curling up with on a rainy day. I am so excited to see what Jaeger writes next.
Thanks to TLC Book Tours for providing a copy of this book for my review. All opinions expressed are, as always, my own.
For more information, visit the HarperCollins website.