When Flossy Merrill summons her children to the beloved family beach house to celebrate their father’s eightieth birthday, both cherished memories and long-kept secrets come to light in this charming and lyrical novel from the author of The Lake Season and Mystic Summer.
Flossy Merrill has managed to—somewhat begrudgingly—gather her three ungrateful grown children from their dysfunctional lives for a summer reunion at the family’s Rhode Island beach house. Clementine, her youngest child and a young mother of two small children, has caused Flossy the most worry after enduring a tragically life-altering year. But Samuel and his partner Evan are not far behind in their ability to alarm: their prospective adoption search has just taken a heart-wrenching turn. Only Paige, the eldest of the headstrong Merrill clan, is her usual self: arriving precisely on time with her well-adapted teens. Little does her family know that she, too, is facing personal struggles of her own.
No matter. With her family finally congregated under one seaside roof, Flossy is determined to steer her family back on course even as she prepares to reveal the fate of the summer house that everyone has thus far taken for granted: she’s selling it. The Merrill children are both shocked and outraged and each returns to memories of their childhoods at their once beloved summer house—the house where they have not only grown up, but from which they have grown away. With each lost in their respective heartaches, Clementine, Samuel, and Paige will be forced to reconsider what really matters before they all say goodbye to a house that not only defined their summers, but, ultimately, the ways in which they define themselves. Featuring McKinnon’s “sharp and evocative” (Kirkus Reviews) voice, this warm-hearted novel is perfect for fans of Elin Hilderbrand and Mary Alice Monroe.
#FirstLine ~ Clem awoke with the sense that something was not right.
I loved this book because it is about a family, a real family, with all its imperfections. It seems that no matter how much time passes and how much we grow up, when siblings get back into the same house old rivalries and issues resurface. That is certainly true in The Summer House. When the Merrill siblings come back to the summer house to celebrate their father's birthday they open new wounds and unearth old secrets. This book was great because it both heartwarming and honest! A great summer read.
Hannah Roberts McKinnon is the author of two commercial fiction novels, The Lake Season and Mystic Summer, with Emily Bestler Books at Atria/Simon and Schuster. She previously published two YA novels, Franny Parker and The Properties of Water, with FSG/MacMillan.
Hannah was born and raised in the hills of Fairfield County, Connecticut. An avid animal lover, she grew up riding horses, writing poetry, and reading anything she could get her hands on. From a young age she dabbled in the arts, settling on painting and writing stories about her pets, friends, and family. The daughter of two teachers, she had a love of English at an early age.
After attending Skidmore College and Connecticut College, she traveled overseas to Australia where she earned her MA and Sixth year degree in Education. Hannah taught elementary school for 10 years. She has since had two children, and when she's not carpooling to dance class and soccer practice, she works full-time from her home office writing novels, chasing chickens, wrangling rescue dogs.
Visit her author website at www.hannahmckinnon.com and on Twitter at @hannahmckinnon