MEET ME AT THE LAKE by Carley Fortune
Fern Brookbanks has wasted far too much of her adult life thinking about Will Baxter. She spent just twenty-four hours in her early twenties with the aggravatingly attractive, idealistic artist, a chance encounter that spiraled into a daylong adventure in Toronto. The timing was wrong, but their connection was undeniable: they shared every secret, every dream, and made a pact to meet one year later. Fern showed up. Will didn’t.
At thirty-two, Fern’s life doesn’t look at all how she once imagined it would. Instead of living in the city, Fern’s back home, running her mother’s Muskoka lakeside resort–something she vowed never to do. The place is in disarray, her ex-boyfriend’s the manager, and Fern doesn’t know where to begin.
She needs a plan–a lifeline. To her surprise, it comes in the form of Will, who arrives nine years too late, with a suitcase in tow and an offer to help on his lips. Will may be the only person who understands what Fern’s going through. But how could she possibly trust this expensive-suit wearing mirage who seems nothing like the young man she met all those years ago. Will is hiding something, and Fern’s not sure she wants to know what it is.
But ten years ago, Will Baxter rescued Fern. Can she do the same for him?
My Thoughts: Meet Me at the Lake
A summer love story, where the set up will instantly hook you in.
Ten years ago, our main character, Fern, meets Will, an aspiring artist, and they end up spending an entire day together. But at the end of the day, Fern never gets his full name or number. Only a promise to meet at her mother’s resort the next summer.
When Will no shows, we jump ten years later to the present.
I loved the way the author weaved in the timelines, tugging us back and forth to that one day that lit the spark between Fern and Will like a match.
A Few More Thoughts
I would have loved a second POV.
We never get Will’s perspective and that would have been super helpful. I feel from only one POV he’s too mysterious in the present and not in a good way. It feels creepy. I lost interest in his intentions, because I had no idea if he was really invested in a relationship with Fern. Plus there is way to much miscommunication. It’s my least favorite trope. I find it aggravating to see two people who know they care for each other, who want a future together, but can’t figure out how to talk to each other through most of the novel.
This could have been avoided if we had Will’s POV. I know what the author was trying to do with the reveal towards the end, but I think Will would have been a more appealing character had we fully understood his mental health, his backstory, and his attachment to his family.
A somewhat instant love story, with a sort of second chance romance (Will and Fern only met for one day and hadn’t seen each other for a decade), Carley Fortune’s sophomore novel transports you to a beautiful setting in Canada, with quirky hotel characters, and a main character who is desperate to try and figure out what she wants with her life.
Happy Reading ~ Cece
RATING: – Satisfyingly Inked
|Pub Date||ISBN||Page Count||Publisher||Age Group||Source & Format||Review Posted Online|
|2-May-23||978-0593638477||336||Berkley||Adult||NetGalley, Digital ARC||April 17, 2023|
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I’m Cecelia and I’m so glad you’re here! You’ll find honest reviews, book recommendations, along with other bookish essentials. So happy you stopped by!