That Chespeake Summer, Chesapeake Diaries, book 9

Author: Mariah Stewart

Publisher: Pocket books

Release Date: June 23, 2015

Blue Ribbon Rating: 5

Format: PRINT

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Jamie Valentine is a world-renowned author of self-help books about the benefits of honesty in relationships. When her mother passes away and she finds a well-hidden folder amongst her mother's papers, Jamie finds out she was adopted and that her life has been a lie. When she contacts the lawyer who handled the adoption, she finds out her birth mother is still alive and living in St. Dennis, Maryland. She confronts her only living relative, her Aunt Sis, about the truth. Her aunt admits that she was indeed adopted at birth and that she had told her sister, Jamie's mom, that she should tell Jamie about the adoption. Jamie's mom always said it wasn't a good time.

Finding out the truth this way is very devastating for Jamie and she doesn't know what to do. She decides to go to St. Dennis to see what kind of place it is and books a room at the Inn at Sinclair Point. She is not sure what she will find or if she wants to find her birth mother but she has to go there.

Daniel "Dan" Sinclair is the keeper of the inn and has been since he was twenty-two. He is raising his two teen-age kids and is available at all times to the staff and occupants of the inn. Dan has his mother as a resident of the inn, so she can watch the day-to-day happenings, since she is in a wheelchair for now after breaking her leg falling down the stairs. Dan's mother, Grace, has the "eye" as they call it, and she can see what is going on in people's lives just by looking at them. Grace knows Jamie has come to town looking for her birth mother and she also knows who her birth mother is. Grace can't tell Jamie but she sets about a way to help her find her birth mother.

Dan can't figure out what Jamie is up to but he knows she is keeping secrets. He has been widowed for ten years and knew his wife was leaving him before she died in a tragic accident. She kept secrets from him, so trusting any woman that is not telling the truth is not going to happen. He hasn't had a relationship since his wife died and feels drawn to Jamie but he can't trust her. When they start getting closer to each other, he wants to know the truth but she won't tell him.

As things start happening, along with Grace's help of course, Jamie has to decide whether she wants to meet her birth mother and maybe suffer her rejection. Or, find out that her mother would love to know her and has suffered for years wondering how her child has lived and if Jamie is happy. The way things start coming out and the secrets that are revealed makes for a very heart-warming and soul-searching end to a beautiful story.

I have loved every one of the nine books in this series, so far, but this one was very emotional for me. Secrets are kept from a young woman who has lost all her immediate family except for one. Jamie's not-knowing whether her birth mother will accept her, or if she will be left heart-broken, is daunting. Plus the feelings growing between two adults who have had enough hurt in their lives. All of these things make for an extraordinary story of love, home, sacrifices and miracles that do come true. I give this book 5 Blue Ribbons on Romance Junkies' website because learning about how difficult it can be to find a birth mother with the adoption records sealed and feeling the sadness of a young woman wanting to know the truth of her existence, without ruining anyone's life, it is enough to make you sit down and cry for all the people involved. Such a beautiful and heartrending story.

By Romance Junkies Reviewer: Diana S

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