Note to Readers

Roundtable Reviews receives many galley and ARC copies for review. Please understand that the finished copy may differ from the copies we have reviewed.

I have not received any compensation for writing this post other than a free digital or galley copy of the book. I have no material connection to the publisher, agent, or author whose book/s I am reviewing. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

The Simplicity of Cider by Amy E. Reichart

Setting: Wisconsin
Genre: Women's Fiction
Publisher: Gallery Books
Release Date: May 16, 2017



Sanna Lund lives and breathes apples and cider. Like others in her family, she has the ability to see the juice of her apples in terms of color. Her handcrafted ciders are great, but they've yet to catch on. Her family's apple orchard is losing money, so her brother wants to sell to a developer. Sanna and her father are adamantly against the idea.

Isaac Banks hasn't figured out how to tell his son that his mother died. Isaac is now a single dad and the cross-country trip they're taking together is the only way Isaac can process his ex-wife's death. He knows he needs to tell Bass that his mom died, but he just can't figure out how and hopes inspiration will come to him during their trip.

Isaac and Bass find themselves at Sanna's orchard. The pair will spend the summer helping out. For Isaac, it's money while Bass enjoys a summer being a kid. It grows into more, however, when sparks start to fly between Sanna and Isaac.

The Simplicity of Cider is such a (trying to come up with the best words) gentle, flowing romance. It didn't rush along like so many romances. Instead, it flowed naturally from moment to moment, situation to situation. I loved the pacing and descriptive writing. I felt like the story involved me rather than got tossed out there. I felt like part of the Lund family and could taste the ciders Sanna made. The writing was just that absorbing. Hopefully, that made some sense.

I do love when a book keeps me absorbed and not feeling like I must rush to find out what happens. For that reason, I'm recommending Amy E. Reichart's latest as one of my picks for beach reads not to miss!




Monday, April 24, 2017

Someone Else's Summer by Rachel Bateman

Setting: Iowa to North Carolina
Genre: Young Adult Fiction
Publisher: Running Press
Release Date: May 9, 2017



Anna and her sister Storm were as close as could be. When Storm is killed in a car accident shortly after graduation, Anna's world implodes. She's lost without Storm. Finding Storm's bucket list, Anna decides to enlist the help of their neighbor, Cameron, who also happens to be a long-time family friend. Together, Cameron and Anna head off on a road trip to the coast to live out everything Storm wanted to do.

Someone Else's Summer caught me from two angles. One, the parent in me shakes to think of a teen heading off halfway across the country. There were times I cringed. Two, the dreamer in me that fell for the characters and their goals. I loved the book for that.

The emotional pull in this book came off as so real. Anna's grief was so realistic, and her disillusion with her parents' protectiveness struck me as true. There are parts of her parents within me, and I've heard my kids say some of the same things. I also remember wishing my own parents in my teen years would loosen restrictions, so I got Anna's viewpoint.

Rachel Bateman has a great beach read here. I definitely am glad I picked it up.






I Found You by Lisa Jewell

Setting: England
Genre: Women's Fiction/Mystery
Publisher: Atria
Release Date: April 25, 2017



Lily Monrose should be having the time of her life. She's newly married to the man of her dreams. However, he never arrives home one night. She knows something is horribly wrong, but police don't seem as concerned. When they finally do investigate, she learns an awful truth. Her husband never existed. Everything he told her was a lie.

Alice Lake's never had great taste in men. The single mom does her best to raise her kids in their quiet seaside cottage. Finding a man on the beach isn't what she'd planned, especially when that man has no idea who he is or how he got there.

Travel back more than two decades to a popular vacation spot. Teenagers Gray and Kirsty enjoy their family summers at the beach, but this year is taking a dark turn. A local teen has taken a shine to 15-year-old Kirsty. Gray's gut feeling is that nothing good is going to come of this infatuation the teen seems to have, but Gray's having a hard time convincing others that something's wrong.

Separated by time and location, these four people's lives are more connected than they could ever imagine. It's up to the reader to learn how a man who never existed, an amnesia victim, and two teenagers could end up so entwined.

I Found You takes more turns than you might imagine. I thought the mysteries would be incredibly predictable, but they're not. I found myself hooked as the clues paint a full picture of a story that goes from obsession, to romance, and back again multiple times. Discover the truth in this very addicting and very detailed novel.