Books: The Cheapest Vacation You Can Buy

{March 25, 2013}   {ARC Review} Love, Water, Memory by Jennie Shortridge

15801904From Goodreads: A bittersweet masterpiece filled with longing and hope, Jennie Shortridge’s emotional novel explores the raw, tender complexities of relationships and personal identity. Who is Lucie Walker? Even Lucie herself can’t answer that question after she comes to, confused and up to her knees in the chilly San Francisco Bay. Back home in Seattle, she adjusts to life with amnesia, growing unsettled by the clues she finds to the selfish, carefully guarded person she used to be. Will she ever fall in love with her handsome, kindhearted fiancé, Grady? Can he devote himself to the vulnerable, easygoing Lucie 2.0, who is so unlike her controlling former self? When Lucie learns that Grady has been hiding some very painful secrets that could change the course of their relationship, she musters the courage to search for the shocking, long-repressed childhood memories that will finally set her free.


This novel takes readers on a journey through Lucie’s soul, uncovering her past, illuminating her present, and glimpsing her future, should she choose to accept them.  It’s a very lovely tale that shows just how hard starting over really is, especially if we’ve lost sight of ourselves along the way.

Something has happened to Lucie Walker.  She wakes up knee deep in the freezing bay, unsure of her surroundings or how she came to be there.  Her finance, Grady, comes to the rescue once her story goes public, but if Lucie can’t remember her past, how can she build a future, let alone live in the present, with a man she doesn’t know?  Told from three different perspectives, readers learn Lucie’s fears, Grady’s secrets, and Helen’s memories, all leading up to the realization that those past lives are not necessarily the truth, and that, no matter our age, we all can change.

I really enjoyed this novel.  I was a little afraid going in because I don’t always enjoy adult fiction, but I really loved the writing style and the mystery surrounding Lucie’s background.  The multiple points-of-view made is extremely interesting and gave much needed insight into the characters’ thoughts and feelings, and though I wouldn’t say this is a romantic novel, it’s real and poignant.  Four stars.

4 stars

Gallery Books has been extremely gracious in allowing me to read an ARC of this novel, via Netgalley, prior to its release on April 2, 2013.


et cetera
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