Brooklyn Summer by Maggie Cummings

Brooklyn Summer by Maggie Cummings is a lovely romance about finding unexpected love.

Ashleigh McAllister has decided to change up her life and spend a little less time in her Brooklyn neighbourhood. After all, she just keeps running into her ex-wife and her ex’s new boyfriend, which sucks every time. So, with the summer off from teaching, she’s going to become a tourist in her own city. Things get a whole lot more interesting when she meets Kellen Dwyer, a friend of Ashleigh’s best friend, Liam, and they start to tour the city together.

Kellen is spending the summer in New York City, cat sitting and apartment sitting for her aunt. First order of business? Visit her old army pal Liam at his new bar. Kellen’s summer takes a turn for the better when she meets Ashleigh at the bar and Liam suggests they hang out together.

Sparks start to fly pretty quickly, but Kellen will only be in the city for the summer before heading home to work at her family’s resort in Colorado. Surely they can just be friends with benefits, though, right? (Wrong! Because this is a romance novel and they have a beautiful happily ever after!)

The Characters

Ashleigh and Kellen are so damn likeable and I thoroughly enjoyed my time with them. Now I want to go hang out with them in Brooklyn, taking in the sights and grabbing some great food.

Ashleigh is a little bruised from the ending of her marriage. She has the biggest emotional arc of the two because she has to figure out if she’s ready to open herself up to love again.

Kellen is an absolute sweetheart. She also has her own side drama that isn’t so much about her growth as a person as it is about driving the story forward, and it ended up working well for me.

The Writing Style

Brooklyn Summer has a breezy tone. The chemistry between Kellen and Ashleigh is also excellent and they have some super steamy sex scenes (you know, if you’re on the lookout for that kind of thing…).

The Narration

As usual, Lori Prince crushed it. She differentiates the voices well and delivers an enjoyable performance.

The Pros

Apart from what I mentioned above, I love how this book captures the feeling of summer in a city.

I also appreciate that no big deal is made of the fact that Ashleigh’s ex ends up with a man. As a bi reader, I was a little concerned when I saw mention of it in the blurb and I was relieved to see how that unfolded.

The Cons

I don’t know if it’s because I was listening to it or what, but the story dragged a little in the middle for me.

The Conclusion

Brooklyn Summer is a perfect beach read. Can’t make it to the beach? Read it anyway and pretend you’re there! It’s a great story for escaping the world and I’m glad I listened to it.

Excerpt from Brooklyn Summer by Maggie Cummings

“Oh my God, I have the best idea.” [Liam] was talking fast, like he always did when he was excited about something. “It just came to me. I can’t believe I didn’t think of it before. Kellan!” he called out, before she could press him for specifics. “Kellan, get over here.”

His urgency must have counted for something, because Kellan was there in a second.

“What’s up, buddy?”

“I’m a genius.” Liam worked away, straightening up the bar as he spoke. “The thing is, I know you’re here for the summer. And I want you to have a great time. God knows, if I was out in Colorado you’d show me around for sure. But the timing…it’s just that I’ve invested a lot in this place, and I sort of need to be here—”

“No worries, bro. I can take care of myself. Honest.”

“That’s just it. You don’t have to.”

Ashleigh felt her heart rate speed up, knowing where Liam was headed. As if reading her mind, he nodded right at her. “Just the other day, Ashleigh told me how she’s got this whole summer plan to see the city. Right, Ash?” There was no chance to answer as Liam launched into a hard sell. “You know how it is when you grow up someplace, and you take all the cool stuff for granted? Ashleigh pointed out that we have this amazing city right at our fingertips and we haven’t done squat.”

She let Liam talk, barely listening as she racked her brain for a way out. It wasn’t that she didn’t want company. She’d loved the idea of Liam coming along. But Kellan unsettled her in a way she couldn’t quite understand, and even though she knew it would be the hospitable thing to do, she longed for an excuse to bail.

Kellan must have read the distress on her face. “That’s all right.” She smiled, but it didn’t have the same spirit as before. Ashleigh couldn’t help being affected.

“You should come,” she said, surprising herself at the offer. “If you want.”

“I don’t want to horn in on your plan. It’s fine.”

She seemed so earnest that it tugged at Ashleigh’s sensitivity. “Well, you don’t have to. But it might be nice to have company.” She cast a glance at Liam and then back to Kellan. “Any friend of Liam’s is good people in my book.”

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Bits and Bobs

ISBN number: 978-1635555783
Publisher: Bold Strokes Books
Audiobook Publisher: Bold Strokes Books Inc
Narrator: Lori Prince

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About the author

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Tara Scott lives in Calgary, Canada with her family. If you don't find her with her Kindle in her hand, she's probably busy talking about what she's currently reading.