Genre: Contemporary romance, Women’s Fiction
Publication date: April 29, 2020
Publisher: HQ Digital
Source: Rachel’s Random Resources
Renee Clarke is perfectly happy just the way she is…
Renee may be thrilled to be planning her sister’s wedding, but after witnessing her mother’s two failed marriages, she has always vowed that she is better off on her own.
But when Renee discovers that Luc Hardy has moved next door, her world is knocked off kilter. Luc was her whirlwind summer romance as a teen and, more importantly, her first love. Now he’s back in West Cove, looking more handsome than ever.
There is no escaping the romance in the air this summer. With the wedding planning in full swing, Renee begins to believe that she might be able to put her childhood reservations about marriage aside.
Yet when her mother arrives, she stirs a torrent of emotions in Renee’s heart. She’s up to her old tricks again–boasting about her latest conquests–reaffirming Renee’s lack of faith in love.
As Renee’s happily-ever-after hangs in the balance, will Luc be able to convince her that true love can last forever?
This book is a testament to the complexity of human relationships. Various relationships between women (mother-daughter, sister-sister) are explored, with emphasis on the failings and strengths of each person.
Several angles are described — the impact of a mother’s life choices on her daughter’s view of marriage and relationships, the effect of a small town’s narrow minds on the way one views women, the way a sister keeps compensating for her mother’s lack of interest in parenting.
All of it was a study in human psychology, the way the human mind works.
Of secondary interest is the contrast between the relationship of an older couple (leisurely and comfortable) and the relationship of a younger couple (full of chaos and Instagram updates).
Renee and Luc’s relationship (or the lack of it) is somewhere in the middle. The two tiptoe around their physical attraction and teen summer history, and have several false starts before they finally accept that love does not have to be painful and conditional.
I got a crash course in organizing a wedding, and I realized that no matter which country and culture it is, a perfect wedding requires meticulous planning, good people skills to smooth over ruffled feathers between family members, and a calm temperament.
Cait’s wedding preparations and choices were dreamy and beautiful, but her reason for dumping the planning on Renee at the last minute was not convincing enough. Seeing how Renee had taken it upon herself to “raise” Cait since their mother (Isla) was too busy elsewhere, Cait should have had a freer relationship with Renee.
The book feels quite long, especially where it delves deep into the estranged relationship between Isla and Renee (and how Renee cannot shake off thoughts of whether her mother would approve of her actions), and the sections where Cait selfishly dumps her work on Renee, but strangely she can’t refuse to do it.
I may not like the characters at all, including Renee and Luc, but I cannot deny that this is the truth about human relationships. People are not perfect; people do make the same mistakes over and over again without learning a thing from them. Even Luc and Marcus are unnecessarily reticent in the garb of giving other people their privacy, where a bit more candour and communication could have solved issues earlier.
Barefoot on the Beach features some enthralling descriptions of sunny beaches and rolling waters, which offset the estranged relationships between the various characters. The writing is fluid and polished, and the story never falters despite the complex subject matter.
Amazon India — https://amzn.to/2VeGuE0
About the Author
Coming from a small town, Katlyn Duncan always had her head in the clouds. Working as a scientist for most of her adult life, she enjoyed breaking down the hows and whys of life. This translated into her love of stories and getting into the minds of her characters.
When she’s not writing, she’s obsessing over many (many) television series.
She currently resides in Connecticut with her family. Check out more about her writing and current TV addiction in her newsletter, on Youtube, and Instagram and Twitter!
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