When I first heard about "A Summer in Oakville," I loved the concept of four characters in one book detailing their experiences and their lives. The plot intrigued me and I decided to read it. I'm glad I did!
Through vivid character portraits, the reader is introduced to family members Tessa, Lindsay, Andy, and Art. Each character's story is from a different and unique perspective.
Second chances and forgiveness are strong themes throughout the book and I love the twists and turns in Tessa's story. Lindsay's story was my favorite; however, I enjoyed each character's story and felt that Ms. Neumeier and Ms. Lickel did a fantastic job of tying the real-to-life issues of those living in a small town into a satisfying contemporary novel. As a matter of fact, reading through the pages made me feel as though I was in Oakville, Wisconsin, watching all of the events - including attempts to save the family farm and tales of unexpected romance -unfold.
"A Summer in Oakville" is a book that will grab your interest and keep you turning the pages. I highly recommend it!
Reviewed by Penny Zeller, Author of the historical romance novel "Kaydie."
I so enjoyed reading the lives of Tessa, Lindsay, Art, and Andy from A Summer in Oakville. Authors Shellie Neumeier and Lisa Lickel have crafted a wonderfully sweet book comprised of four related novellas. Each novella is told from a different character's perspective, and each serves to further the overall story of the Hasmers and Murphys in their quest to save their family farm.
I especially enjoyed the varying perspectives on life and love from each character, which included a middle aged woman contemplating divorce, a young woman who still hasn't found her niche, a widower struggling with memories, and a boy who on the surface seems like a typical sullen teenager. Each story contains a humor and innocence, as the characters deal with forgiveness, family, and love.
Meet members of a family...Tessa, Lindsay, Andy, and Art, and how their lives are connected--not only by kith and kin, but individual and collective heartbreak. Their stories are unique and moving, their names forever etched in the memory lane of my heart.
I'm drawn to stories of forgiveness and A Summer in Oakville does not pale. It holds its own, brightly, in what's an enchanted narrative woven together by four separate novellas, skillfully written and a joy to read.
Through relationships challenged, life lost, even battles over land rights and development in rural Wisconsin intensified, find love renewed, second chances embraced, and forgiveness presented around every corner.
God is faithful and good--just witness it through the related characters abiding in a special little town called Oakville.
A Summer in Oakville is a sweet read. It's one overall story, told from 4 different points of view. Each POV character has their own story going on during the overall story. It was very different and fun. I really enjoyed seeing the main thread through the different view points. Then each character had a love/life lesson to learn themselves. If you like real stories about real people, read this novel.
When Tessa Murphy's husband takes off on a new business venture, the Oakville, Wisconsin wife refuses to follow. She grew up in this community where Gram and Gramps still own the family farm of four generations. Why would she leave her home, her roots, her source of calm in the turmoil of her life? But it is not the present that bothers her as much as the past that holds a secret she has never shared. The new stranger in town forces her to deal with the guilt that has long haunted her. A surprise return by her college-grad daughter who decides she'd rather live with Gram and Gramps on the farm, forces Tessa to confront the ghosts of her past. Can she prevent her daughter from making the same mistake that she did so long ago? And Tessa's brother Art--where has he been all these years since his twin brother died? Facing his own painful memories and guilt, the recently widowed Art finally returns, only to discover he has to face his past to find healing in his future. Art's teenage son Andy is lost, grieving for both his deceased mom and for a dad who is emotionally disconnected from him. The four family members reconnect one summer in Oakville, drawn by the need to return to the family farm, which is both the source of their pain and their healing. "A Summer in Oakville" is both delightfully funny and painfully real in its characters and their relationships. While being spiritually uplifting, it does not drip with pat answers or solutions, but leads the reader to understand it is the decisions that the characters make that will bring either healing or more conflict. The two authors, Lisa Lickel and Shellie Neumeier do an artful job of blending each story from the four characters' points of view, merging them together into a conclusion that is satisfying and filled with hope and love of family. "A Summer in Oakville" is a family treasure.