Forever Beach: A Novel
Release Date – June 7, 2016
Setting – New Jersey
William Morrow Paperbacks
An Imprint of Harper Collins Publishers
Trade Paperback: 416 pages
E-Book ASIN: B015WXQEMC
One woman struggling to hold on to what she has,
One woman learning to forgive
Their lives entwined by one little girl.
Sarah Hargreave is anxious to finalize the adoption of her foster daughter Leila. Once a foster child herself, Sarah longs to become Leila’s “forever” family and give her all the love and stability she was denied in her own childhood. When Leila’s biological mother suddenly reappears and petitions the court for the return of her daughter, Sarah is terrified she’ll lose the little girl she loves to the drug addicted mother who abandoned her.
Having grown up in foster care, Ilona Cartwright fights for the rights of children who have no one to fight for them. But to Sarah she is Nonie Blanchard, who grew up in the same group foster home as Sarah. They’d promised to be best friends forever, then Nonie was adopted by a wealthy family, and Sarah never heard from her again. Sarah still hurts from the betrayal. But Nonie harbors her own resentment toward the past.
Mistrustful of each other, the two women form a tenuous alliance to ensure Leila’s future, but when Leila’s very survival is on the line, they’ll have to come to terms with their own feelings of hurt and rejection to save the child they both have come to love.
Sarah Hargreave grew up in the foster system, in and out of foster homes. She didn’t find her forever home until she aged out of the system and met a wonderful man who ran a clock repair shop. Sarah has brought Leila into her home and doesn’t want her to go through what she did so she starts the adoption process. The biological mother has signed off her parental rights and Sarah is just waiting for the adoption to be finalized. Then the bio mom changes her mind and the court grants her visitation. This is not the first time this has happened and Sarah knows it will be a huge step back in Leila’s progress.
Ilona Cartwright also grew up in the foster system but she was adopted by a well to do family. She and Sarah were just like sisters and it was so hard for them to say good-bye. They promised to stay in touch but Ilona “Nonie” didn’t write to Sarah and Sarah was devastated. Ilona did go to law school and she does works fighting for the rights of children. Can Sarah and Nonie get together to provide Leila a forever home?
What a moving story! A picture of the foster system and the adoption process. They do go to great lengths to keep families together but there are times that the child needs a new family. There are a few dark and scary moments but they show us both sides of these issues.
I found Sarah so interesting. Her life was in her hands and she met a man with a huge heart and no agenda or shifty plans. She made the decision to stay with him and he became like a father/grandfather to her. It took a long time to trust him and she still has huge trust issues. She doesn’t let anyone get to close to her or Leila because things could fall apart at any time. She does have “friends” and a man that would like to be more than “friends”, but she has put up huge walls to protect herself and her heart.
These characters are natural and believable. This story becomes a huge story of friendship and self growth. Building relationships, trust, and trying to forgive. Superb writing!
The story is also set in an amazing place. Near the beach, there are several shops, most more touristy than Clocks by the Sea. The funny thing is Sarah can’t swim and hates the water. The beach is a great meeting place and she is fine planting herself in a chair under an umbrella while Leila builds sand castles.
I really loved this book. It was a wonderful escape. The cover looks like is definitely belongs on my blog. If you need a beach read this summer this is a perfect one, to sit back, put your toes in the sand and enjoy! My definition of Paradise!
About The Author
SHELLEY NOBLE is the NEW YORK TIMES Bestselling Author of the women’s fiction novel BEACH COLORS, a #1 Nook bestseller, STARGAZEY POINT three novellas, Holidays at Crescent Cove, Stargazey Nights, BREAKWATER BAY and WHISPER BEACH.
As SHELLEY FREYDONT she is the author of the CELEBRATION BAY FESTIVAL MYSTERIES (Berkley Prime Crime) as well and two other mystery series, and the upcoming Gilded Age Newport Mystery series. Her mysteries have been translated into ten languages.
A former professional dancer and choreographer, she most recently worked on the films, Mona Lisa Smile and The Game Plan. Shelley lives near the New Jersey shore where she loves to discover new beaches and indulge her passion for lighthouses and vintage carousels.
Writing as Shelley Noble
Writing as Shelley Freydont
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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. 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.”