The Boardwalk Bookshop
by Susan Mallery
Publication Date May 31, 2022
Published by MIRA
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Genres: Fiction / Family Life / Marriage & Divorce, Fiction / Family Life / Siblings, Fiction / Friendship, Fiction / Romance / Contemporary
***I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.***
"A book begging to be read on the beach, with the sun warming the sand and salt in the air: pure escapism."—Kirkus
From #1 New York Times bestselling author Susan Mallery—a story of friends who become family, giving each other courage to start over…
When fate brings three strangers to a charming space for lease on the California coast, the Boardwalk Bookshop is born. Part bookstore, part gift shop, part bakery, it's a dream come true for Bree, Mikki and Ashley. But while their business is thriving, their personal lives are…not.
Bree, wounded by brilliant but cold parents and her late husband's ultimate betrayal, has sworn to protect her heart at all costs. Even from Ashley's brother, a writer and adventurer who has inspired millions. He's the first man to see past Bree's barricades to her true self, which terrifies her. Mikki has this divorce thing all figured out—somehow, she's stayed friends with her ex and her in-laws…until a new man changes how everyone looks at her, and how she sees herself. Meanwhile, Ashley discovers that the love of her life never intends to marry. Can she live without being a wife if it means she can have everything else she's ever wanted?
At sunset every Friday on the beach in front of the Boardwalk Bookshop, the three friends share a champagne toast. As their bond grows closer, they challenge one another to become the best versions of themselves in this heartachingly beautiful story of friendship, sisterhood and the transformative power of love.
The Boardwalk Bookshop by Susan Mallery is a wonderful story about three friends who all own shops in the same retail space. This story is about the power of friendships and found families.
Bree, Mikki, and Ashley have rented one retail space for their own shops. Bree owns The Boardwalk Bookshop, Mikki owns The Gift Shop and Ashley owns Muffins to the Max. Although they didn’t know each other before they became co-owners of the space, they soon became fast friends, and make sure they spend every Friday afternoon together with a bottle of wine on the beach to go over their week.
Bree is divorced and the child of inattentive parents who cared more about their next book than their own child. Her ex-husband was almost as enamored by her parents as he was with her and eventually cheated on her. But, will Ashley’s author brother make her rethink her vow to never date an author? Ashley is in love with her boyfriend and expects a proposal any day now, but when he claims to want to spend the rest of his life with her but doesn’t want to marry her, can she live without the formal commitment of marriage? Mikki is divorced with two children about to leave the nest. She and her ex-husband have stayed on friendly terms as they co-parent their children. She’s happy to put all her energy into her store, but when an unexpected friendship happens with a handsome man, can she finally move on from her marriage?
The Boardwalk Bookshop was a quick book to read. It was easy to follow the three friends and their lives as they changed throughout the book. Their friendship with each other was so beautiful, especially since they hadn’t known each other very long. They are so supportive of each other and their businesses.
The romances were good, and not the entire focus of the book, as it was more about each individual’s personal growth. There is a bit of steam in this book, but nothing too unusual.
I also enjoyed the setting. Owning a bookstore (or gift shop or muffin shop) right on the beach must be a dream come true, and I liked the way the author weaved the location into the story. I thought Bree was the toughest character to like in the beginning, but she really grew on me throughout the book. Mikki was my favorite character and I enjoyed her story the most.
I highly recommend The Boardwalk Bookstore to anyone who enjoys Women’s fiction. I received a complimentary copy of this book. The opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
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