The southern town of Saisons lies at the crossroads between North and South, progressive and genteel antebellum life. Between East and West, between history and heritage, and new frontiers. Downton Abbey meets Gone With the Wind.
It’s 1912, in a world where slavery is dying and women’s rights are rising, and four young women who once shared a bond—and experienced a tragedy—question their own truths.
Mercedes has always been an avid reader and devours each new Sherlock Holmes mystery as soon as she gets her hands on them. When one of her friends comes to her, Mercedes vows to keep Simone’s secrets and uncover the truth.
But as Mercedes plays detective to her friends’ questions, she discovers something far more shocking—she herself is not who she thought she was.
SERIES: Seasons #1
GENRE: Inspirational Historical Fiction
PUBLISHER: Bird’s Nest Books
RELEASE DATE: August 31, 2017
“We had made a pact, Pearl and Scarlett and me, never to tell anyone what happened.”
A girl returned from ‘the dead’. A post-antebellum mansion with secret passages and secrets in general. Four childhood friends, from different backgrounds and different stations, each with distinct personalities, now grown. Mysteries to solve and people to protect. Deep South mixed with French and Native American influences, still trying to reconcile its past with its future.
All of these are ingredients in Robin E. Mason’s compelling novel, The Long Shadows of Summer. The South Carolina setting wraps around you like a comforting hug, and the author’s deliciously rich prose elevates the setting even further – until you can feel the humidity and hear the cicadas and bullfrogs. Her first person voice is captivating, and readers can easily immerse themselves into the story because of it.
Bottom Line: A great start to Mason’s new series, The Long Shadows of Summer introduces us to four friends who have their share of secrets, pain, and love. Their varying backgrounds give us a glimpse into each part of society, as well as the ‘upstairs/downstairs’ culture of the day. The intriguing storyline is layered and draws you in further and further until you must know what will happen next. On occasion, the book gets a little bogged down in ‘memory’ or scenery but overall each element is skillfully placed and rich with atmosphere.
(I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the author. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.)
My Rating: 4 stars / Love it!
KissingBook Level: 3 / May forget to breathe on occasion
10 Places You Have Visited or Want to Visit
1. I’ve been to Trinidad and Tobago three times on mission trips. Third time it was November, and it was just as muggy and hot as summers here! Beautiful people, beautiful scenery, and beautiful ministry.
2. Ireland. Want to go. Will go someday. I’m part Irish, and I do love all things Celtic. And I do a fair good Irish accent, too, don’tcha know?
3. England. Apparently, per my accent, I’m from Reading, a mere 40 miles from London. I love the history—and of course, I love our good friend, Jane Austen.
4. Israel. The birthplace of my faith, the land where Jesus walked.
5. Egypt. Pyramids, yes, but Dame Agatha Christie’s Death on the Nile piqued my interest. Well, so did Conni Cossette’s Out from Egypt series.
6. South Africa, specifically Victoria Falls. I’ve a few friends from S.A. and after writing a piece on the falls decided I just need to see this place for myself.
7. Australia. I’ve made a few Aussie friends along this writer journey, and it would be dear to me to see all your faces!
8. Machu Picchu. I’ve been intrigued with this place since I first laid eyes on pics of it as a child. The green! The mountains! The ruins! Breathtaking!
9. Hawaii. Because who doesn’t!
10. Greece. Because it’s beautiful Because Plato and Hippocrates and Socrates. And because the pivotal scene in my debut novel takes place on Santorini!
“I’ve always had voices—er, stories in my head. I once said I should write them all down so someone could write them someday. I had no idea at the time that someone was me!”
Ms. Mason has been writing since 1995, and began working in earnest on her debut novel, Tessa, in 2013. Meanwhile, she cranked out a few dozen poems, made countless notes for story ideas, and earned her BFA in Interior Design. Ms. Mason lived with depression for many years, and the inherent feelings of worthlessness and invisibility; she didn’t want to be who she was and struggled with her own identity for many years. Her characters face many of these same demons.
Ms. Mason writes stories of identity conflict. Her characters encounter situations that force the question, “Who am I really?” For all who have ever wondered who you are or why you’re here, her stories will touch you in a very real—maybe too real—and a very deep way. “I know, I write from experience.”
Ms. Mason has three novels previously published in the unsavory heritage series. Tessa, Clara Bess, and Cissy are available on Amazon, both for Kindle and in print. She also has several poems included in an anthology, Where Dreams and Visions Live (Anthologies of the Heart Book 1) by Mary Blowers, as well as a short story, Sarafina’s Light, also in an anthology, Blood Moon, compiled by Mary Blowers. She is currently working on The Tilting Leaves of Autumn, Book Two in her new series, Seasons. It releases in November, following The Long Shadows of Summer which releases in August. Books 3 and 4 in the series will be out in 2018.
Other Books by Robin E. Mason
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