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Saturday, February 26, 2011

That Camden Summer...Review

The year is 1916. The place is a tiny New England village called Camden--where a newly divorced woman learns that love can be more special the second time around ...

When free-thinking divorcee Roberta Jewett returns to her hometown of Camden, Maine, she discovers that small-town folk consider a divorced woman little more than a prostitute. Condemned by her mother and scorned by neighbors, she nonetheless perseveres in her struggle to forge a good life for her girls and herself. Behaving like no "respectable" woman would, she gets a job as a county nurse, learns to drive, and buys her very own Model T. Embittered by her painful marriage to an unfaithful husband, she has no intention of being any man's victim again. So when widowed carpenter Gabriel Farley begins work renovating her house, Roberta's first response to him is blatant resentment. But Gabriel's quiet, vibrant masculinity soon finds a way to soothe Roberta's heart.

And in the ultimate test of will and devotion, she must depend on the man she has grown to love and summon the courage to stand up to an entire town.

After divorcing her philandering husband, Roberta Jewett moves back to her hometown of Camden, Maine with her three daughters.  Divorce is unheard of at the time and divorcee's are looked down upon.   As is typical with small-town society, Roberta is judged and criticized because she's spirited and not afraid of hard work or supporting herself and her daughters.

Her mother is angry and bitter.  Her sister is deluded into thinking her own marriage is idyllic, even as her husband attempts to seduce Roberta.  Gabriel is the quiet man whose friendship Roberta comes to value.  When busy body members of the community begin persecuting Roberta, Gabe is the one who stands by her.

I just like LaVyrle Spencer and this is one of my favorite books from her.  I love independent women and Roberta is one of my favorite characters.  You can't help but like her.  The book does contain a rape scene which is not gratuitous, but is essential to the storyline. 

Personal copy.  You can purchase your own copy here.

Last read 2/11

* * * *
4/5 Stars

1 comment:

  1. I don't think I've ever read any of Spencer's work, and now I'm wondering why.