The Sandcastle Hurricane by Carolyn Brown

EXCERPT: Rising out of the rocky and sandy beach right across the EastBay of southeastern Texas and the Bolivar Peninsula, the Sandcastle Inn had a stone seawall in front of it that had been built with the same gray stones as the house. With twelve-foot ceilings in every room, the inn stood like a tall and proud sentinel keeping watch over the small beach town of Sandcastle. A wide porch wrapped all the way around the first floor and provided a catwalk for the rooms on the second story. Three of the bedrooms faced the Gulf of Mexico – or ‘the ocean’ as Aunt Charlotte called it – and two had a view of the old barn at the back of the property. The house had been home to generations of Landrys, was on the register of historical homes, and had survived more than one hurricane.

ABOUT ‘THE SANDCASTLE HURRICANE’: Cousins Tabby and Ellie Mae are due for a change. Running their aunt’s beachfront bed-and-breakfast in Sandcastle, Texas, is just the thing to shake things up…though their lives spin out of control in more ways than one when a hurricane barrels into the coastline. It’s a miracle it didn’t carry them off to Kansas. Not so lucky are the assisted-living center and a small eclectic group of local folks who take shelter with the cousins.

Two estranged sisters, rowdy as a circus, need a referee for a battle that goes back decades. And a pair of veterans, best friends for years, hash out bittersweet old times. There’s also handyman Alex LaSalle and his business partner, Ricky, experts at repairing the hurricane’s damage—and at making Tabby’s and Ellie Mae’s hearts beat a little faster.

As unpredictable, crowded, and stormy as it gets, the Sandcastle B and B is still the perfect harbor for healing past wounds, finding romance, and making up for lost time. Add in Tabby’s homemade pecan pie, and the Texas shore feels like a little slice of paradise.

MY THOUGHTS: Another heart-warming fun read from Carolyn Brown.

Families – the reason for our existence – the bain of our lives. The Sandcastle Hurricane is a good reminder that parents need to let their children pick their own paths in life; that children are not there to fulfil their parents unrealised dreams, desires and potential.

As always Brown tugs at the heart-strings and I became fully invested in the characters and their outcomes. Two young women who have known much, if different, heart-ache – cousins Tabby and Ellie-Mae – also have precarious relationships with those who should be their nearest and dearest and rely on each other for support and friendship with Aunt Charlotte as back-up. Their plans for the B&B are hi-jacked by a group of residents from a nearby assisted-living facility evacuated to the B&B when their facility is under threat from Hurricane Delilah. The four are made up of Chloe and Maude who are constantly at war, and Homer and Frank who had served in Vietnam together, and then been business partners. What a foursome! The asides between Maude and Chloe had me laughing out loud, while Frank and Homer are the voices of reason – most of the time. Alex and Ricky are the cherries on top – blown in by the hurricane. Who says an ill wind never blows any good?

The Sandcastle Hurricane is a delightful, heart-warming read about taking the chances offered and not closing off either your heart or mind to change. It deals with grief, various forms of loss, the healing properties of pets, and families – the good, the bad, and the downright ugly!

⭐⭐⭐.8

TheSandcastleHurricane #NetGalley

I: @carolynbrownbooks #montlake

T: @thecarolynbrown #Montlake

#contemporaryfiction #familydrama #romance #womensfiction

THE AUTHOR: Hi! I’m twenty five years old and movie star gorgeous. The camera added thirty plus years and a few wrinkles. Can’t trust those cameras or mirrors either. Along with bathroom scales they are notorious liars! Honestly, I am the mother of three fantastic grown children who’ve made me laugh and given me more story ideas than I could ever write. My husband, Charles, is my strongest supporter and my best friend. He’s even willing to eat fast food and help with the laundry while I finish one more chapter! Life is good and I am blessed!

Reading has been a passion since I was five years old and figured out those were words on book pages. As soon as my chubby little fingers found they could put words on a Big Chief tablet with a fat pencil, I was on my way. Writing joined reading in my list of passions. I will read anything from the back of the Cheerio’s box to Faulkner and love every bit of it. In addition to reading I enjoy cooking, my family and the ocean. I love the Florida beaches. Listening to the ocean waves puts my writing brain into high gear.

I love writing romance because it’s about emotions and relationships. Human nature hasn’t changed a bit since Eve coveted the fruit in the Garden of Eden. Settings change. Plots change. Names change. Times change. But love is love and men and women have been falling in and out of it forever. Romance is about emotions: love, hate, anger, laughter… all of it. If I can make you laugh until your sides ache or grab a tissue then I’ve touched your emotions and accomplished what every writer sets out to do.

I got serious about writing when my third child was born and had her days and nights mixed up. I had to stay up all night anyway and it was very quiet so I invested in a spiral back notebook and sharpened a few pencils. The story that emerged has never sold but it’s brought in enough rejection slips to put the Redwood Forest on the endangered list.

Folks ask me where I get my ideas. Three kids, fifteen grandchildren, two great grandchildren. Note: I was a very young grandmother! Life is a zoo around here when they all come home. In one Sunday afternoon there’s enough ideas to keep me writing for years and years. Seriously, ideas pop up at the craziest times. When one sinks its roots into my mind, I have no choice but to write the story. And while I’m writing the characters peek over my shoulder and make sure I’m telling it right and not exaggerating too much. Pesky little devils, they are!

DISCLOSURE: Thank you to Montlake via Netgalley for providing a digital ARC of The Sandcastle Hurricane by Carolyn Brown for review. All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own personal opinions.

For an explanation of my rating system please refer to my Goodreads.com profile page or the about page on sandysbookaday.wordpress.com

This review and others are also published on Twitter, Amazon, Instagram and Goodreads.com

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Author: sandysbookaday

I love good quality chocolate. I love the ocean and love to be in, on or beside it. I read any and every where. I am a proud mum and Nana. I like wine, gin, Southern Comfort, a cold Heineken on a hot day. I am very versatile like that. I cross stitch, do jigsaws, garden, and work on a farm. I am an occasional scribbler. I have far too many books I want to read to ever find the time to die. I am an active member of Goodreads as Sandy *the world could end while I was reading and I would never notice* and review on Amazon under the name Sandyj21. My Goodreads reviews are automatically linked to my Facebook page. Groups I belong to and participate in on Goodreads include: The Mystery, Crime and Thriller Group; Mysteries and Crime Thrillers; Psychological Thrillers; Reading for Pleasure; Crime Detective Mystery Thrillers; English Mysteries; Dead Good Crime; Kindle English Mystery, All About Books and NZ Readers. April 2016 I made the Top 1% of Goodreads reviewers (As follows) Hello Sandy *The world could end while I was reading and I would never notice*, In our community of readers, you stand out in a notable way: You're one of the top 1% of reviewers on Goodreads! With every rave and every pan, with every excited GIF and every critical assessment, you've helped the Goodreads community get closer to a very important milestone – the 50 Million Reviews mark!

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