I would love to tell you that the conclusion to Ann Gabhart's trilogy of stories is a satisfying and enjoyable reading experience. I'd love to...I just can't. The story felt rushed and included elements that seemed to come from out of nowhere, instead of building sincerely from previous threads.
Jocie's prayers seem to be answered almost immediately...until now. Her new English teacher is making her freshman year of high school agonizing. And he's tormenting her soon to me step-mother as well.
All in all, he's a real creep. Which seems to come from out of nowhere.
David is finally biting the bullet and popping the question...which seems to take f.o.r.e.v.e.r., and NOT in a good way. By the time he asked and she replied (I'll leave you to wonder her response), I would have said no just because.
Wes has recovered nicely from the accident that took place in "The Scent of Lilacs", and has a made a change for life. Too bad his life gets interrupted by nosy Zella's well meaning interference...a story arc that seems to produce a mere yawn from me. But this one had SUCH potential.
And as for the surprise from the past that threatens to ruin everything...I kept waiting for it, and it never showed up. At least, not in the manner I anticipated. All in all, I found myself skipping pages and skimming chapters just to reach the end.
Which truly makes me sad, because I loved Ann's previous two novels in this series. It just felt as if she had to wrap things up, and did so in the quickest manner possible. If I didn't know better, I'd think someone else wrote this book in the trilogy, it was so different for me.
That said, I still recommend Ann Gabhart's trilogy to you. Maybe I'm just tired right now, and wasn't in the mood for such a story. That's always possible. And I did love "The Scent of Lilacs" and "Orchard of Hope". So, try them for yourself and see what you think.
I'm giving "Summer of Joy" three out of five bookmarks (hesitantly), with a photo of the planet Jupiter as a charm...and you'll have to read the series, at least the first book, to find out why.
For my review of "Orchard of Hope", click here. Sorry, no review of "The Scent of Lilacs"...I read that one long before I began blogging:-(