The Summer Cottage
by Annie Rains
Somerset Lake - Book 1
Release Date: May 25, 2021
Reviewed by PJ
This summer, they’ll learn that home is where the heart is.
Somerset Lake is the perfect place for Trisha Langly and her son to start over. As the new manager for the Somerset Cottages, Trisha is instantly charmed by the property’s elderly residents and her firecracker of a new boss, Vi Fletcher. But Trisha is less enchanted by Vi’s protective grandson Jake. No matter how tempting she finds the handsome lawyer, Trisha knows that if Jake discovers the truth about her past, she’ll lose the new life she’s worked so hard to build.
Jake Fletcher left Somerset Lake after a tragic loss, but he’s returning for the summer to care for his beloved grandmother, hoping Vi will sell the run-down cottages and finally slow down. There’s just one problem: Trisha, Vi’s new employee. She’s smart, beautiful, and kind, but Jake’s job is to protect his grandmother’s interests, and his gut is telling him Trisha’s hiding something that could jeopardize Vi’s future. However, as they spend summer days renovating the property and bonding over their love for the town, Jake realizes that Trisha is a risk worth taking—if only she can trust him with her secrets . . . and her heart.
Includes the bonus novella Kiss Me in Sweetwater Springs!
Annie Rains is an author I discovered only a few years ago but she's quickly become one of my favorites in the genre of sweet but deeply emotional, small-town romance. With The Summer Cottage, Rains launches her new Somerset Lake series, just in time for those lazy summer reading days, and I couldn't be happier. As she did with her long-running Sweetwater Springs series, this first Somerset Lake book introduces us to a community of characters who are vibrant, interesting, and ready to have their stories told. I'm excited to read them all.
Trisha and Jake are compelling, authentic, and relatable characters with whom I connected right away. Jake is such a good guy who deserves a happy ending and after all Trisha and her young son Petey have been through they really deserve a good guy, and a happy ending of their own. Jake and Petey's evolving relationship made my heart so happy and Jake and Trisha's slow-burn journey to love made me smile, sigh, and, yes, shed some tears. It's sweet, fun, and deeply emotional...an Annie Rains' trademark.
As important to Trisha's life as her relationship with Jake is, the friendships she forms with the women of the Somerset Lake book club are equally important in a different way. I loved the interactions among these women and especially their response when the truth of what Trish's ex-husband did is revealed. And speaking of her ex, I think Rains handles that situation, and especially the impact on young Petey, with sensitivity and care. I appreciate the fact that it's not swept under the rug but dealt with openly and honestly.
Sweetwater Springs fans will recognize Trisha and her young son, Petey from the last book in that series, Reunited on Dragonfly Lane. It's not necessary to have read that book in order to enjoy The Summer Cottage though I do think it provides an added depth of understanding of what they faced in their hometown and why a new beginning at Somerset Lake was so necessary for both of them.
I enthusiastically recommend adding The Summer Cottage to your summer reading list. I'm already looking forward to the second Somerset Lake book, The Christmas Village, which releases October 12, 2021. You best believe I already have it on pre-order. 😀
I love quirky secondary characters in the books I read and there's an exceptionally good one in The Summer Cottage. Tell me about a secondary character who brightened one of your reading experiences.
Have you read any Annie Rains books? Do you have a favorite?
Reading The Summer Cottage took me back to my childhood summers and the lake we lived on. What are your favorite memories from your childhood summers?
The scenes in this book that take place in Jake's plane evoked memories of my first plane rides in my uncle's two-seater. Have you ever flown in a two-seat or four-seat plane? Were you enthralled, like Petey, or terrified, like Trisha?
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