The Edge of Summer
Sutton Douglas became a successful fashion designer for a major clothing house, but deep inside her impoverished upbringing in the Ozarks never went away. When her mother Mabel dies of COVID-19 Sutton finds herself at a crossroads. Mabel claimed all their family perished in a catastrophic house fire, with only her and Sutton surviving. A chance find among her mother’s effects suggests the upright and honest woman actually lied. Sutton quits her job to pursue inquiries into her heritage, and her quest leads to the resort town of Douglas, Michigan.
… a heartwarming and life-affirming read.
Sutton’s soon enmeshed in the vibrant life of the town where she meets the handsome “Tug” McCoy, heritage store owner, sparking an immediate and mutual attraction. At an estate sale Sutton encounters Bonnie Lyons, the wealthy and formidable matriarch of the community. Bonnie takes Sutton under her wing, giving her commissions for dresses, but from the first there’s an uncanny sense of familiarity about the elderly woman. The more Sutton interacts with Bonnie and her silent and downtrodden maid Lauralei, the more the feeling grows that both know more about Sutton’s life than strangers should. Bonnie’s generosity hides dark secrets and her kindness has barbs. As the summer passes Sutton gradually uncovers those secrets. Can she confront Bonnie and get to the truth of who Mabel Douglas really was?
The Edge of Summer is a heartwarming and life-affirming read. Shipman deftly portrays Sutton Douglas as a sympathetic character with a genuine and human need to discover who and what she is.