Standalone Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by Megan @ bookslayerreads. Standalone Sunday was created to let others know about all the standalone books you have loved, but maybe don’t get the attention they need. Megan created the banner as well and anyone joining in can use it too. Why not check out her blog too?
I have never read a Shelley Noble novel before, but I sure am glad I gave WHISPER BEACH a try. The story takes place in the small New Jersey shore town of Whisper Beach where everyone knows everyone else, and they are all in each other’s business. I grew up in a small town in New Jersey, and I know exactly how that feels. Vanessa survived a rough childhood and as soon as she could, she left and never said goodbye to anyone. No one knew where she went or why. Some people thought she had died.
Fast forward, twelve years later and Van is back in WHISPER BEACH for the funeral of her cousin’s husband. She thinks she can just sneak in and out and no one will say anything to her. She couldn’t be more wrong. Her past is coming back in a big way. Before she left, something tragic happened and she knew she had to get away. She left behind her boyfriend Joe, and while she has supposedly gotten over the past, Joe has never really let her and their memories go.
My heart was breaking for Joe and at times I wanted to shake some sense into Van. How could she leave someone as perfect as Joe behind? Dorie, who was the woman Van always ran to when things got tough, invites Van to stay for a few days and work through some issues. Dorie’s husband has blown through all of their money from the restaurant Dorie owns, and she is now nearly bankrupt. Van decides to help Dorie get her finances in order and begin making money again, all the while trying to hide from Joe, and it is not going well.
WHISPER BEACH is a wonderful story of friendship but also about learning to let go of the past and moving on. Each of the characters come to terms with their memories and take a second look at their loyalty and friendship to one another. I love how Shelley Noble described life in a small town because she is spot on. Please do not think WHISPER BEACH is your typical beach read. It is so much more and as soon as you start reading you will find the hours slipping away, and you won’t be able to turn the pages fast enough to see what is going to happen next. I can’t wait to read more by Shelley Noble.