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Summer Breeze

Cover of Summer Breeze

Summer Breeze

A Novel
New York Times bestselling author Nancy Thayer never fails to imbue her novels with warmth and wisdom. In Summer Breeze, the author of Beachcombers and Heat Wave tells the wonderfully moving story of three women who forge a unique bond one sun-drenched summer on New England’s Dragonfly Lake.
 
Morgan O’Keefe feels trapped in a gilded cage. True, the thirty-year-old mother agreed to put her science career on hold to raise her young son while her husband  pursued his high-powered job. But though Morgan loves many things about staying home with her child, she misses the thrill of working with her colleagues in the lab. She’s restless and in dire need of a change.
 
Fed up with New York City’s hectic pace, Natalie Reynolds takes up her aunt’s offer to move to the Berkshires and house-sit her fabulous lakeside house for a year. Passionate about applying brush to canvas, Natalie is poised to become the artist she has forever longed to be. But life on Dragonfly Lake is never without surprises, and for a novice swimmer like Natalie, the most welcome surprise proves to be the arms of a handsome neighbor pulling her up from the water for a gulp of air.
 
When her mother breaks her leg, Bella Barnaby quits her job in Austin and returns home to help out her large, boisterous family. Among her new duties: manning the counter at the family business, Barnaby’s Barn, an outdated shop sorely in need of a makeover. While attractive architect Aaron has designs on her, Bella harbors long held secret dreams of her own. 
 
Summer on Dragonfly Lake is ripe for romance, temptation, and self-discovery as the lives of these three women unexpectedly intertwine. Summer Breeze illustrates how the best of friends can offer comfort, infuriate, or even—sometimes—open one’s eyes to the astonishing possibilities of life lived in a different way. This captivating novel displays a prestigiously gifted writer at the height of her storytelling powers.
From the Hardcover edition.
New York Times bestselling author Nancy Thayer never fails to imbue her novels with warmth and wisdom. In Summer Breeze, the author of Beachcombers and Heat Wave tells the wonderfully moving story of three women who forge a unique bond one sun-drenched summer on New England’s Dragonfly Lake.
 
Morgan O’Keefe feels trapped in a gilded cage. True, the thirty-year-old mother agreed to put her science career on hold to raise her young son while her husband  pursued his high-powered job. But though Morgan loves many things about staying home with her child, she misses the thrill of working with her colleagues in the lab. She’s restless and in dire need of a change.
 
Fed up with New York City’s hectic pace, Natalie Reynolds takes up her aunt’s offer to move to the Berkshires and house-sit her fabulous lakeside house for a year. Passionate about applying brush to canvas, Natalie is poised to become the artist she has forever longed to be. But life on Dragonfly Lake is never without surprises, and for a novice swimmer like Natalie, the most welcome surprise proves to be the arms of a handsome neighbor pulling her up from the water for a gulp of air.
 
When her mother breaks her leg, Bella Barnaby quits her job in Austin and returns home to help out her large, boisterous family. Among her new duties: manning the counter at the family business, Barnaby’s Barn, an outdated shop sorely in need of a makeover. While attractive architect Aaron has designs on her, Bella harbors long held secret dreams of her own. 
 
Summer on Dragonfly Lake is ripe for romance, temptation, and self-discovery as the lives of these three women unexpectedly intertwine. Summer Breeze illustrates how the best of friends can offer comfort, infuriate, or even—sometimes—open one’s eyes to the astonishing possibilities of life lived in a different way. This captivating novel displays a prestigiously gifted writer at the height of her storytelling powers.
From the Hardcover edition.
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Excerpts-
  • From the book

    1

    When Aaron’s Volvo pulled up to the curb of the Barnaby house, Bella felt just a bit giddy.
    She’d met Aaron Waterhouse in December, right after she’d returned home to Dragonfly Lake to help her mother, and the connection had been instantaneous and electric.
    Aaron was handsome, sweet, sexy, and smart. He was the first man she’d ever wanted to marry. While Bella was growing up, her own family had been happy—noisy and messy, but happy—and Bella wanted one like that for herself. Lots of children, toys on the floor, flour on the kitchen counter while she taught her son or daughter to make popovers (so much fun for children), a husband who would come home from work with a smile on his face to toss his children into the air—and who could make her melt at the sight of him, the way she was melting now.
    She could have all that with Aaron. He had just gotten his master’s in architecture. He was putting out feelers for jobs and was sure to get a good one. He was so bright, so reliable. He wanted children. He was in love with her. She was in love with him, and the vision of their life together was enticing.
    But there was one enormous problem: Aaron had been invited to interview for a job in San Francisco.
    San Francisco excited Aaron. Bella didn’t want to leave Massachusetts.
    She’d left already, plenty of times. She’d seen foreign places.
     
    She’d traveled to Paris, to Italy, to Amsterdam. She’d lived in Utah and in Texas.
    Now she wanted to get started with her own real life. She wanted to live here, near Dragonfly Lake, a world she knew and cherished. It wasn’t just the landscape and the closeness of her family. It was more than that—it was as if she were falling in love with a new vision of herself, as if at twenty-seven a mist were evaporating from a mirror, allowing her true image to show clear.
    It was early June. Bella and Aaron had been together for five months, growing closer every day. She was pretty sure Aaron was about to propose to her. And she didn’t know what her answer would be.
    “Bell!” Her older brother, Ben, stuck his head into the living room. “I’m driving down to the Hortons’ with our beach chairs and the food.”
    “Okay,” Bella answered. “Aaron and I will walk down.”
    Ben went out the door and headed to his Jeep Cherokee, with its four-wheel drive, good for the snowy months, and its back hatch, good for carrying lots of stuff. Ben was practical, scientific, and methodical. He had a PhD and a tenured position at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. His life revolved in a precise circle like planets orbiting the sun.
    Bella’s life felt more like a Slinky flopping down the stairs.
    She grinned at her own joke. At least she still had her sense of humor. You couldn’t live in a family of four Barnaby children, all with a first name that began with the letter B, without developing a sense of humor. And she was happy, and an optimist, glad to be home, full of hope for the future. Her life wasn’t tragic. Just a puzzle.
    Bella had spent the last two and a half years teaching third grade
    in Austin, Texas, until last Christmas, when her mother, while trying to put the angel on top of the tree, fell off the ladder and broke her leg. Bella’s father taught high school English five days a week. Bella’s older sister, Beatrice, was busy in her house an hour away with her three little children. Ben, of course, had his own apartment in Amherst, his students, and lab. Seventeen-year-old Brady was still in high school. So Bella abbreviated her...
About the Author-
  • Nancy Thayer is the New York Times bestselling author of Heat Wave, Beachcombers, Summer House, Moon Shell Beach, and The Hot Flash Club. She lives in Nantucket.

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Summer Breeze
Summer Breeze
A Novel
Nancy Thayer
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