Summertime Dream


Margie Olsson is at a crossroads.  After a betrayal and recovering from a life-threatening surgery, she just wants to be treated normally again; to grow. Christopher Gordon has inherited an estate from a great-grandmother he never knew existed. In a rush to see, fix, and sell everything and return to his fast-paced life in L.A., he never counted on a sweet southern belle or a wrecked house to change him.

Amazingly, Ms. James has made bucolic towns unbelievably appealing to urban dwellers!  By focusing not on the lackadaisical or sometimes back-stabbing qualities to country life, instead she shows us a place where everyone knowing your business comes from a place of love, where even busy-bodies and snide comments often start from a sense of concern and caring. Family is of utmost importance in life for both characters in spite of their vastly different backgrounds.  This makes their instant connection and love of solving a family mystery so enjoyable to follow. Margie wants to write, and it’s made clear how hard it actually is.  Christopher’s job allows him complete freedom to live and travel wherever, but he finds that it isn’t really freedom, but a prison. The only negatives are slight. Margie’s lamentation about her family’s treatment of her is mentioned too often, the repetition unneeded to feel her heartbreak. And Christopher’s background is not as rich as hers, making him slightly more two-dimensional than she is. Their love of, and dedication to, fixing the house is a beautiful metaphor on the work relationships take, especially when broken, bloated, or forgotten.

Julie York