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Sanctuary Island by [Everett, Lily]
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Sanctuary Island Kindle Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 92 customer reviews
Book 1 of 4 in Sanctuary Island (4 Book Series)
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Length: 353 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Everett's sweet contemporary debut illustrates the power of forgiveness and the strength of relationships that may falter but never fail. Ella Preston and her sister, Merry, head to Virginia's Sanctuary Island, a refuge for wild horses, from their home of Washington, D.C. Merry is determined to forge a new start with their estranged mother, Jo Ellen, a recovering alcoholic. While workaholic Ella doesn't share her pregnant sister's zeal for reconciliation, she has always looked out for Merry, so she agrees to go along. Handyman Grady Wilkes retreated to the island after suffering devastating injuries as a search-and-rescue team member, and Ella is shocked to fall hard and fast for him. These two damaged souls must find the courage to open up to love, even as Ella struggles to forgive her mother. Richly nuanced characters and able plotting make for a pleasant journey while setting up the next book in this series. Agent: Deidre Knight, Knight Agency. (Aug.)

From Booklist

Ella Preston went through years of therapy to resolve her issues with Jo, her absentee mother. Now her unwed, pregnant sister, Merry, wants to visit Jo in her home on the remote Sanctuary Island, which is also a wild-horse preserve. Ella, who has protected her younger sister since their mother left, never wants to see Jo again, but her maternal instincts toward her sibling outweigh everything else. When Ella and Merry get to Sanctuary Island, complete strangers warn them not to break their mother’s heart. This perplexes Ella, who has always considered herself the victim. Grady Wilkes, a handyman who lives on Sanctuary Island, came there to heal his own wounds. He’s a good friend of Jo’s, and he’s worried that her daughters will destroy her emotionally. But like most families, the Prestons have their secrets, and as assumptions fall slowly by the wayside, the possibility for mended relationships begins to feel like reality. Redemption, reconciliation, and, of course, romance—Everett’s novel has it all. --Shelley Mosley

Product Details

  • File Size: 1251 KB
  • Print Length: 353 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Paperbacks (July 30, 2013)
  • Publication Date: July 30, 2013
  • Sold by: Macmillan
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00B22AS48
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #346,553 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition
Where to start with this great new book?

I was lucky enough to receive an advanced copy of this book, and I literally could not put it down once I started!

The book takes us back to Sanctuary Island, and tells us the story of Ella Preston and her sister, Merry, who are on their way to SI so that Merry can reconnect with their mother. Now, I should probably make myself clear, MERRY is the one that actually wants to be on Sanctuary meeting up with here mother. Ella is watching over her and making sure she doesn't get hurt in the process. What is a good book without a stubborn woman, right? ;)

Right when they arrive, Ella meets the mysterious Grady Walker, and for reasons she can't really figure out, she wants to know more about him, and the shadows in his eyes.

Personally, I think Grady is the PERFECT person for Ella to fall for- he has his scars, literally and figuratively- and needs a VERY strong woman that can help break down his walls and get past his demons. He also needed to be strong for Ella in different ways, to help her grow personally, as well as with her sister and her estranged mother.

The story unfolded beautifully, with plenty of character development and growth, without jumping in to things too quickly. I feel like there are too many romance novels out there, with the hero and heroine jumping in to bed with one another right off the bat. With this book however, I feel is was necessary for the two of them to have a friendship first before something more was able to develop. Lily did that PERFECTLY.

From beginning to end I was hooked. If you are looking for a heart string tugging, emotional journey, pack your bags and get ready to head off to Sanctuary Island for the amazing tale of Grady and Ella. You will not regret it! Already counting down to Merry's story coming out in January. :)
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Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is a many-layered pleasure from start to finish. The characters are so real and so well grounded,
I found myself fully engaged in their emotional struggles in a way I rarely am in this genre. The plot
arises organically from their natures and their histories, so it all feels very true. Most importantly,
though, is the way the natural beauty of Sanctuary Island permeates the whole story, affecting all the
characters in fundamental ways. The author's love for the setting gives this work a glow that lasts long
after you put the book down. You'd have to be made of cold concrete not to love Lily Everett's work.
(4 stars because 5 is reserved for all-time favorite books.)
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I loved this book so much! It's heartwarming, romantic, emotional, and even made me laugh in a few places. I loved the hero Grady (I'm a sucker for a scarred hero), and the heroine Ella was very relatable. I really liked that she cared so much about her younger sister's happiness. I was so happy when Grady and Ella finally found their way to each other.

I read all three of Everett's novellas earlier this month (if you haven't read them--hurry! They're fantastic!) and fell in love with Sanctuary Island. They made me wish I could take a vacation there. I can't wait for the next book in the series with Ben and Merry!
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Format: Kindle Edition
After reading Lily Everett's three novellas leading up to Sanctuary Island, I knew when I finally got my hands on the book and read it, I wouldn't be able to put it down. I loved the hero, Grady, a wounded man who finally finds peace with the right woman. My emotions were all over the place with this book, as Ms. Everett is able produce emotion in me that I otherwise keep locked up! I especially appreciate the relationship between the two sisters, as no one understands what an older sister does for a younger one until you've lived it.

I love the healing quality and the beautiful descriptions of Sanctuary Island. What an amazing place--if it actually existed--but I will be content with my first journey and look forward to the next book in the series.

Thank you, Ms. Everett, for such a wonderful read!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
I had such a great visit back to Sanctuary Island with Lily Everett's first full length novel in this series!

Ella grew up fast. Her mother was an alcoholic and in her early years Ella spent a lot of time dealing with her mothers mood swings, the fear of people finding out, and taking care of her younger sister. When her father finally left Jo Ellen, taking Ella and Merry with him, Ella felt very responsible for Merry. Often her father was working 2 jobs to support them, leaving the girls alone often. Jo Ellen got treatment with the help of her Aunt from Sanctuary Island, but she has never seen her girls since they left with their father. Despite weekly letters and requests to see them, it has never happened.

Now Ella and Merry are grown up. Ella is on forced leave from her job, close to burn out, and Merry is quite pregnant and single. Together, at Merry's request, they decide to travel to Sanctuary Island to reunite with their mother at long last. This is not a trip Ella wants to make, but she is still very protective of Merry, so she goes along with it. Ella guards her heart and her sister. Her life seems to be her work and her sister. She has had therapy over the years, but the hurt, anger, and distrust of her mother is still inside of her.

Ella is miserable, bitter, and angry that she is on isolated, tiny Sanctuary Island. One of the first person she runs into is Grady...what starts out as annoyance and anger with him quickly turns into unwanted attraction - for both of them.

"...Grady felt electricity arc between them in a flash of heat and awareness. Her eyes widened with it, and she stumbled back a pace.
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