today’s book: The Best Summer Of Our Lives by Rachel Hauck
We are moving right along on our summer-long Road Trip Reads Giveaway where we will be visiting all 50 states on the pages of recently released books. Because road trips are always better with friends – and books – right? So grab your fave snacks, a cold soda or bottled water, an upbeat playlist and let’s hum a Broadway tune as we head to our next destination!
today’s stop: Oklahoma
THE BEST SUMMER OF OUR LIVES by Rachel Hauck
GENRE: Inspirational Women’s Fiction
PUBLISHER: Bethany House
RELEASE DATE: June 27, 2023
Twenty years ago, the summer of ’77 was supposed to be the best summer of Summer Wilde’s life. She and her best friends, Spring, Autumn, and Snow–the Four Seasons–had big plans.
But those plans never had a chance. After a teenage prank gone awry, the Seasons found themselves on a bus to Tumbleweed, “Nowhere,” Oklahoma, to spend eight weeks as camp counselors. All four of them arrived with hidden secrets and buried fears, and the events that unfolded in those two months forever altered their friendships, their lives, and their futures.
Now, thirtysomething, Summer is at a crossroads. When her latest girl band leaves her in a motel outside Tulsa, she is forced to face the shadows of her past. Returning to the place where everything changed, she soon learns Tumbleweed is more than a town she never wanted to see again. It’s a place for healing, for reconciling the past with the present, and for finally listening to love’s voice.
A Memorable Summer—or Three!
by Rachel Hauck, author of The Best Summer of Our Lives
At my age, I’ve had a lot of memorable summers. Yet there are a few that stand out more than others – those summers that changed the course of my life in some way. (Cue the theme from Grease.)
1975 – At fifteen, my parents allowed me some freedom. I worked as a cashier at Publix, my best friend, Lorena, had a car, and we spent a lot of hours driving up and down U.S. 1 in South Florida. The summer became memorable because of how I’d changed. I’d shed those pre-teen pounds, layered my hair, and caught the attention of a couple of stockboys. They’d wink at me. Whistle when I walked by. I know that’s frowned on today, but that summer? I started to believe I was pretty.
1985 — My last summer at Ohio State. I attended summer school to fulfill some requirements for graduation that fall. I lived in the sorority house with about six others and well, I remember we laughed. A lot. I ran to K-Mart – this summer I was the one with the car!— and bought a kiddie pool. We sunbathed on the front walk. Crazy kids. Why was it memorable? Because I was graduating soon. Saying goodbye to my youth, to my educational journey. While I was ready to move on, a part of me wanted to be the girl always laughing with her friends while sitting in a kiddie pool.
2014 — My grandmother turned 100 years old in May of 2014. Her two daughters and their families gathered to celebrate. We rented cabins at a park in eastern Tennessee and, as the cousins caught up with one another, it became clear we were at the start of something. There were so many second cousins, several very close in age. While sitting on a porch, avoiding the rain, I looked around and said, “You know, we can’t let this go.” Everyone heartily agreed. That memorable summer was the beginning of a family tradition. We just had our tenth reunion, with more to come. The photo is of the pink flamingo float my husband and I bought to tote out for lounging on the lake. One of my nieces affectionately named it “Flammy.” We had some good laughs over Flammy.
Summers are fragrant with cookouts, cool rains, and in my world in Florida, the scent of the ocean. But summers also hold some of our most cherished memories. They are the days between one grade to the next. Of family vacations. Weddings and reunions. Take some time today to remember one of your favorite summers. Don’t keep the memories to yourself – call someone and reminisce.
Rachel Hauck is an award-winning New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling author. She is a double RITA finalist, and a Christy and Carol Award winner. Her book Once Upon a Prince, first in the Royal Wedding Series, was filmed for an Original Hallmark movie. A retired member of the American Christian Fiction Writers Executive Board, she teaches workshops and leads worship at the annual conference. Rachel lives in sunny central Florida with her husband and ornery cat. Learn more at RachelHauck.com.
Bethany House is offering a print copy of The Best Summer of Our Lives by Rachel Hauck to one of my readers! (US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.) This giveaway is subject to Reading Is My SuperPower’s giveaway policies which can be found here. Enter via the Rafflecopter form below.
What about you? What makes you want to read The Best Summer of Our Lives by Rachel Hauck? Have you ever visited Oklahoma? What has been your most memorable summer?