For the past five summers. Laney MacGuire has made the trip from North Carolina to Leisure Lodge, a family owned lake resort in Wyoming. She spends her days helping out on the property and her nights hanging out with her besties, Karissa and Rory. This summer, she hopes the timeless beauty of the lake and her faithful friends will be the anchor she needs after an especially turbulent year. She soon discovers, however, that the people she was counting on for stability are coping with their own troubles; ironically it is only in the company of the resort’s newest resident that Laney finds comfort.
Like most seventeen year olds, Laney is focused on her immediate future: fun with friends, pleasing her parents, choosing a major. She is running from a difficult past, and her attempts at hiding a painful experience is holding her back from honest relationships with those who care about her. Laney is at a crossroads, and she isn’t the only one: Rory is moving to Texas, Karissa is concealing trouble at home, and her father is facing major changes to the lake resort and his personal life.
This isn’t just a “coming of age during one magical summer” story – it is an authentic depiction of what happens when young life must face adult ordeals. The book is honest and cathartic; the are many light hearted and romantic moments in Laney’s summer, and I very much enjoyed the camaraderie between friends and family. There are also uncomfortable conversations and situations – it is genuine portrayal of life: good and bad.
I enjoyed the realistic characters and original plot… the chapter titles were a log of the 99 days Laney spent at the lake. It is a tremendous journey of self discovery and sacrifice in that narrow window that separates a carefree life from one with consequences. -kris