Thursday, September 29, 2022

Review: Hollyhock Summer by Kathy Fawcett


About the Book



Kathy Fawcett

Release Date
October 5, 2022

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Rory was royalty at Two Hearted Bay’s exclusive Birch club. Until her father’s unexpected death left her penniless, and her fiancĂ© just left. Determined to rebuild her life, she takes in a collection of boarders – one with a surprise that will change her summer, and her life.

It’s a mystery to Rory Stillwell why her handsome law school boyfriend stopped calling her—this was supposed to be their engagement summer. The one where their two families would celebrate endlessly on the veranda of Hollyhock, her family’s three-story Victorian cottage near Lake Michigan’s sunset coast. Now, since her father died unexpectedly and took his fortune with him, Hollyhock is all Rory has left.

Rory’s mother refuses to show her face to the snooty neighbors at the historic Birch club and plans to shutter the summer home for the first time in 150 years. Rory is having none of that. She wants answers. She wants to see for herself if her love affair is really over. Her ex can block her calls, but he can’t avoid her if she’s right next door all summer, can he?

Knowing she can’t afford to keep the lights on in the mansion without help, Rory bends club rules and sneaks a lively group of young renters into Hollyhock—an Aussie sous chef, a medical student who doubles as a sailing instructor, and a book editor who arrives with a hidden identity and big surprises. Together, the new friends have an unforgettable summer in Two Hearted Bay as they dodge nosy neighbors and unlock the secrets that tie Rory to the past.

With the sunny beaches of Two Hearted Bay as a backdrop, Rory learns what she’s really made of and who she can count on. And she learns that true love isn’t something that can be planned; it’s as wonderful and unexpected as her Hollyhock summer.

Lose yourself in the lively town of Two Hearted Bay, on the sandy shores of Lake Michigan. Whether you love women’s fiction or clean small town romance, you’ll love the Two Hearted Bay series.

My Review

Rory Stillwell finds out that life can change very quickly without any notice.  Her family spent every summer in their Two Hearted Bay cottage, Hollyhock. The Stillwell's dined at the country club all the time and Rory had a very handsome, wealthy law student boyfriend.  When her father suddenly dies, she finds out their family has nothing.  No money, her boyfriend dumps her, and her old friends turn their backs on her.  All that is left is Hollyhock.

Rory’s mother refuses to go anywhere near Two Hearted Bay, but Rory is on a mission.  She needs and wants to know why her boyfriend left her.  Is it really over because of her lack of funds? Or maybe there is still a chance for them?  The only thing Rory can think to do is open Hollyhock for the summer, but in order to do that, she needs to rent out some rooms.  Unfortunately, renting is against the bylaws. So, she takes in three boarders and calls them her cousins. What could possibly go wrong?

This is the first in a brand new series.  The story takes you on an emotional roller coaster as Rory tries to come to grips with her father’s death and her boyfriend’s abandonment.  Not to mention her mother  is keeping her distance. To top it all off, her neighbors make sure she knows they want nothing to do with her now that she has no money.

There were times I wanted to shake some sense into Rory, other times I just wanted to hug her.  She’s surrounded by a lovable supporting cast. Of course, some characters are more lovable than others. I laughed and cried right along with Rory.  When a story touches all my heartstrings and brings tears to my eyes, it gets high ratings from me. It is already on my best of 2022 book list.

Hollyhock Summer is a delightful, sweet romance with characters you can truly care about and root for. I know I did.  It made for an entertaining weekend read.

Kathy Fawcett is now on my list of “must read” authors.  I will definitely be looking into her backlist. I adore her writing style after just one book.  I so love finding new-to-me authors.

FTC Disclosure: I voluntarily reviewed a free Advance Reader Copy of this book from the author and publisher. I was not required to write a positive review.  All opinions expressed are my own.


  1. We didn't visit a Lake Michigan beach this year. Maybe sometime next year. Nice review.

  2. This sounds like so much fun and I love that cover! Too bad you felt like shaking Rory from time to time but the book sounds enjoyable enough that that isn't too much of an issue.


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