Life Coach Magazine

The Summer Cottage by Viola Shipman

By Debi Lantzer @debiL1611

The Summer Cottage by Viola ShipmanThe Summer Cottage by Viola Shipman
Published by Graydon House on April 23, 2019
Genres: Domestic Life, Family Life, Women’s Fiction
Pages: 416
Format: ARC, eBook
Buy on Amazon


From the bestselling author of THE CHARM BRACELET and THE RECIPE BOX comes the perfect summer escape about the restorative power of family tradition, small-town community and the feel of sand between your toes.

Adie Lou Kruger’s ex never understood her affection for what her parents called their Creaky Cottage, the charming, ramshackle summer home—complete with its own set of rules for relaxing—that she’s inherited on Lake Michigan. But despite the fact she’s facing a broken marriage and empty nest, and middle age is looming in the distance, memories of happy childhoods on the beach give her reason for hope. She’s determined not to let her husband’s affair with a grad student reduce her to a cliché, or to waste one more minute in a career she doesn’t love, so it becomes clear what Adie Lou must do: rebuild her life and restore her cottage shingle by shingle, on her terms.

But converting the beloved, weather-beaten structure into a bed-and-breakfast isn’t quite the efficient home-reno experience she’s seen on TV. Pushback from Saugatuck’s contentious preservation society, costly surprises and demanding guests were not part of the plan. But as the cottage comes back to life, Adie Lou does, too, finding support in unexpected places and a new love story on the horizon. One cottage rule at a time, Adie Lou reclaims her own strength, history and joy by rediscovering the magic in every sunset and sandcastle.

“Every now and then a new voice in fiction arrives to completely charm, entertain and remind us what matters. Viola Shipman is that voice and The Summer Cottage is that absolutely irresistible and necessary novel. The Summer Cottage brings us the astounding importance of home and underscores the importance of a loving family and of having a generous heart. Grab a glass of sweet tea and enjoy! Cheers from my porch to yours!” -New York Times Bestselling Author Dorothea Benton Frank

Author, Viola Shipman is very familiar to me.  In March of 2016, I had the opportunity to read The Charm Bracelet (see review HERE).  Next, I read The Hope Chest in July of 2017 (see review HERE).  Finally, I read The Recipe Box in March of 2018 (see review HERE).  When I saw The Summer Cottage available to read and review on NetGalley, you can bet I requested it, and fortunate for me, I was approved.

This week I am home recovering from a hospitalization involving a subarachnoid hemorrhage.  What that means to me regarding books I’ve read, is that I am going through the list and reporting on all the books I read and never reported on.  Today’s book is one of those books.

The Summer Cottage is a moving story about Adie Lou finding herself after the death of her parents and a painful divorce.  Adie Lou then decides to quit her job and leave her old life behind.  She travels to the place she loves the most  — her parents’ summer cottage — the Cozy Cottage  that she’s inherited on Lake Michigan — and finds that it is falling apart.  Adie Lou tries to rebuild the cottage into a bed and breakfast.  Along the way, Adie Lou realizes that nothing is easy as she struggles to put her life back together and the summer cottage.

As the Cozy Cottage is getting restored and begins to come back to life, Adie Lou finds herself coming back to lie too, finding support in unexpected places. Adie Lou reclaims her own strength, history and joy and rediscovers the magic in every sunset and sandcastle.  There is much in this beautiful story about the choices people make, and about letting go of what no longer serves us so that we can more fully become the people we are meant to be.  The characters are well developed and well written and overall, I enjoyed this book from cover to cover.

The Summer Cottage by Viola Shipman VIOLA SHIPMAN is a penname for Wade Rouse, a popular, award-winning memoirist. Rouse chose his grandmother’s name, Viola Shipman, to honor the woman whose heirlooms and family stories inspire his writing.

To date, The Charm Bracelet and The Hope Chest have been translated into over a dozen languages and become international bestsellers. The Recipe Box was hailed by #1 New York Times bestselling author Richard Paul Evans as “filled with cherished memories and treasured recipes … a touching tribute to the women and food that unite us and connect our past to the present.”

Wade has written for PeopleGood HousekeepingCoastal Living and Metrosource, among others, as well as been a regular contributor to All Things Considered, where he did a series of funny, poignant essays on family holidays. Wade’s writing has also appeared in TimeForbesSalon, the Washington PostOutThe AdvocatePublisher’s Weekly and Writer’s DigestUSA Today calls Wade “a wise, witty, often wicked voice,” the Chicago Tribune’s Pulitzer Prize-winning cultural critic states that everyone should “read Wade Rouse, especially if you value laughter and wisdom”, and Writer’s Digest recently named Wade the #2 Writer, Dead or Alive, “We’d Love to Have Drinks With” (Wade was just behind Ernest Hemingway, and just ahead of Hunter S. Thompson).

Wade earned his bachelor of arts in communications, with honors, from Drury University and his master of science in journalism from Northwestern University. He divides his time between the resort towns of Saugatuck-Douglas, Michigan, and the Palm Springs, California. For more, please visit or

I received a complimentary digital copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for my review.  IMy views are my own and are in no way influenced by anyone.  Thank you.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

It would be great if you would stay connected with me!! You can follow me on Twitter @DebiL1611, like me on Facebook at 2014 and Beyond, circle me on Google+, follow me on Tumblr, Instagram and Bloglovin’, subscribe on YouTube, or connect with me on LinkedIn and Pinterest.

Please make sure to visit my homepage and subscribe to my blog for more great posts on running, fitness and lifestyle topics as well as food, product, music and book reviews, and more!

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog