A New Shade of Summer – Nicole Deese – Love in Lenox – Waterfall Press – Published 12 September 2017
Tess O’Rourke dreams of becoming the first female chief of police in Long Beach, California. As commander of the East Division, she is well on her way . . . until the night she responds to an officer-needs-assistance call and fatally shoots an unarmed teenager. Despite being cleared of wrongdoing by a grand jury, Tess is so hounded by the public that she takes a job in Oregon to escape the bad press.
Winning over the residents of Rogue’s Hollow might be more difficult than adjusting to her new role as police chief in the small, backwater town. Especially when her closest friend, the pastor’s wife, goes missing and the woman’s cousin is found shot. Tess finds an ally in sheriff’s deputy Steve Logan, but as they track down Rogue’s Hollow’s first murderer, she worries that she’s breaking one of her rules and getting too close to him.
A New Shade of Summer is a vibrant and truly gorgeous novel that was such a delight to read.
Callie has spent her life on the road, moving from one art commission to the next, relishing her freedom. The only place she ever returns to is Lenox, the home of her sister, brother-in-law, niece and nephew. They are the reason for her visit to the charming town this summer. She certainly doesn’t expect to kindle an attraction to local vet Davis, nor form a bond with his twelve-year-old son, and budding artist, Brandon. But if Callie isn’t used to risking her heart, nor of dreaming of a future that involves staying in one place, is it worth building a relationship?
When Callie first meets Davis, it’s not the best time for either of them. Davis has just learnt of his son’s most recent truancy and Callie has just taken part in a paint fight with her niece and nephew. But while their first impressions might not have started them on the right foot, a stray dog soon changes their path. Callie and Davis’s relationship journey just felt so natural. Every moment was a delight, even when they faced challenges. There are many beautiful relationship journeys in this book. Most notable, perhaps is Davis’s relationship with his son Brandon. What was once a strong father-son bond has eroded over the past year, and Davis isn’t sure what step to take next. Callie helps mend the riff, through art, compassion, patience, and understanding.
There is so much to enjoy about this book. I especially loved that it was written in alternating chapters from both Callie and Davis’s perspective. They are such different people – Callie vibrant, free-spirited and spontaneous, while Davis is more ordered and logical. Their characters came across so clearly and were so unique. It was really fun watching them connect and break through the barriers that might have prevented them from finding love.
Combined with sweet romance, a strong sibling relationship between Callie and her sister, and fun moments spent enjoying the summer sunshine doing everything from kayaking to painting murals, this book celebrates love, family, and life.
Genre: Christian contemporary.
Themes: Family, art, grief, father-son relationship, artists, relationships.
Published: 12 September 2017 by Waterfall Press.
Format: Paperback, ebook, audiobook. 336 pages.