Thursday, March 26, 2020

Review: The Last Bathing Beauty by Amy Sue Nathan

A former beauty queen faces the secrets of her past—for herself and the sake of her family’s future—in a heartfelt novel about fate, choices, and second chances.

Everything seemed possible in the summer of 1951. Back then Betty Stern was an eighteen-year-old knockout working at her grandparents’ lakeside resort. The “Catskills of the Midwest” was the perfect place for Betty to prepare for bigger things. She’d head to college in New York City. Her career as a fashion editor would flourish. But first, she’d enjoy a wondrous last summer at the beach falling deeply in love with an irresistible college boy and competing in the annual Miss South Haven pageant. On the precipice of a well-planned life, Betty’s future was limitless.

Decades later, the choices of that long-ago season still reverberate for Betty, now known as Boop. Especially when her granddaughter comes to her with a dilemma that echoes Boop’s memories of first love, broken hearts, and faraway dreams. It’s time to finally face the past—for the sake of her family and her own happiness. Maybe in reconciling the life she once imagined with the life she’s lived, Boop will discover it’s never too late for a second chance.

 Kindle Edition, 300 pages
Expected publication: April 1st, 2020
by Lake Union Publishing

Amy Sue Nathan is a new author for me, she is a Tall Poppy Writer (check out the website for some awesome writers here) and I'm thrilled to be one of their reviewers.

Summer isn’t here yet but this would be a perfect beach read. It took me to the Catskills of the Midwest (didn’t even know they had one) in 1951. Betty planned it to be her last summer of fun before starting at Barnard’s in the fall. Her future is all planned out.

Current day Betty is...well, older but wiser? Forced to acknowledge that fateful summer reveals memories buried and secrets revealed.

As I was getting into this book I started to worry that this was going to be another predictable story and for a bit it was, until it wasn’t. Weaving back and forth in time with the majority taking place at a Jewish Summer Resort run/owned by the grandparents of Betty. The Last Bathing Beauty is a well written story with authentic characters and multiple layers. It’s not just about first love but forbidden love, family and secrets (just to name a few).

This book releases next week and will be available on different platforms. I recommend this book to those that enjoy coming of age stories as well as taking a peek at a bygone era.

My thanks to the author for an advanced e copy (via Netgalley) in exchange for an honest review

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