Title: At the Edge of Summer
Author: Jessica Brockmole
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Publish Date: May 17, 2016
What's the Story?:
From Goodreads.com: "Luc Crépet is accustomed
to his mother’s bringing wounded creatures to their idyllic château in
the French countryside, where healing comes naturally amid the lush
wildflowers and crumbling stone walls. Yet his maman’s newest
project is the most surprising: a fifteen-year-old Scottish girl
grieving over her parents’ fate. A curious child with an artistic soul,
Clare Ross finds solace in her connection to Luc, and she in turn
inspires him in ways he never thought possible. Then, just as suddenly
as Clare arrives, she is gone, whisked away by her grandfather to the
farthest reaches of the globe. Devastated by her departure, Luc begins
to write letters to Clare—and, even as she moves from Portugal to Africa
and beyond, the memory of the summer they shared keeps her grounded.
later, in the wake of World War I, Clare, now an artist, returns to
France to help create facial prostheses for wounded soldiers. One of the
wary veterans who comes to the studio seems familiar, and as his mask
takes shape beneath her fingers, she recognizes Luc. But is this
soldier, made bitter by battle and betrayal, the same boy who once wrote
her wistful letters from Paris? After war and so many years apart, can
Clare and Luc recapture how they felt at the edge of that long-ago
My Two Cents:
Ah, summer! Sometimes you need the perfect book to come along and take you through the hottest months. "At the Edge of Summer" is a good book for that. Featuring a love story between Luc and Clare set against the devastation of WWI, this was a good book to while away an afternoon. Told partially through letters between the characters, this is a historical fiction love story that had me by the heart.
There is something about epistolary books that I absolutely love. For me, letters are one of the best ways to get your point across truthfully and with the most feeling possible. The letters really allow the readers to get a really good understanding of the characters and what made them tick. I loved the story between Luc and Clare. It's very romantic seeing how they break apart and then are put back together again. I thought the author did a great job of capturing how both of the main characters change and shift throughout the book!
Also, I loved the inclusion of the art of creating prostheses during WWI. I had never really given much thought to what a person suffering some sort of war related disfigurement would do at that time. We get to see the process of making masks to not only hide the disfigurement but to improve the morale of the soldiers. Clare is one of the artists who is able to create these masks. I love when I can learn something from the books that I am reading and this was certainly eye-opening for me!
This is a good read with great writing. I know Luc and Clare will be on my mind long after I finished the last page!
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