The story of two sisters and the boy next door...
The acclaimed author of Firefly Beach and other New York Times bestsellers, Luanne Rice explores the powerful bonds that connect old friends, and the joy of life’s unexpected second chances. Now, returning once more to the Connecticut beach town at the center of many of her most beloved novels, she touches our hearts with a spellbinding story of a love lost--and saved--by the power of what was always meant to be . . .
Schoolteacher Rumer Larkin never felt the need to stray from Hubbard’s Point. Rich with legends of seafaring spirits and lost treasures, the rustic village still echoes with the memories of Rumer’s past--even after those she loved have left. But now, so many summers after Zeb Mayhew broke her heart, he has returned with his teenage son, and Rumer knows her quiet life will never be the same again.
Zeb has come back to hoping to reconnect with his son, with the past and all its mistakes. Suddenly facing Rumer again, Zeb discovers where he belongs. He could never forget the girl who used to climb onto his roof with him to watch the stars. But neither Zeb nor Rumer knows if it’s too late to do more than regret the path not taken--or if every path leads us back to the one true love of our life . . .
From the Paperback edition.
An earnest and affecting portrait of life in the magical seaside town of Hubbards Point, Conn., Luanne Rice's True Blue finds childhood friends Rumer Larkin and Zeb Mayhew torn apart by a seemingly insurmountable betrayal Zeb married Rumer's older sister, Elizabeth, instead of her. Now, after a 20-year absence, a bitter divorce and a life-altering expedition aboard a space station, Zeb has returned to the Point seeking forgiveness and maybe something more. The themes of sisterhood and friendship that appear here are common threads in Rice's novels (Safe Harbor, etc.), as is the sense that there's an ethereal force guiding the lives of the Points inhabitants. With its graceful prose, full-bodied characters and atmospheric setting, this uplifting and enchanting tale is likely to become a beachside staple.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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July 28, 2002
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Excerpt from True Blue by Luanne Rice
Chapter One The FOR SALE sign had been there, nestled in the ivy for so long, it had begun to seem part of the landscape, and then it was gone. Early June, Hubbard's Point was coming back to life, so everyone noticed. Taking their evening walks down the dead-end road to the Point, looking up at the old Mayhew place, couples would speculate--in voices loud enough for Rumer Larkin to hear--about who the new owners would be. Rumer wondered herself, but only slightly. That house, no matter how often it changed hands, had had only one owner that mattered--and Zeb had sold it ten years ago, after his and Elizabeth's divorce. Rumer knew there were two types of people who came to the Point. Those like her family, who stayed forever, and those who thought more about property values than the simple peace of the beautiful land. People like that came and went. The women of the Point--or les Dames de la Roche, as Winnie Hubbard called them--just watched without much comment. It was dusk. The air was fragrant with honeysuckle and beach roses. Pale blue and white lace hydrangeas bloomed along the garage and stone wall. Pine and scrub oak trees, symbolic of Hubbard's Point, filled all the yards. The sound of her father sanding the bottom of his boat rasped through the air. Peering out the kitchen window, Rumer brushed wheat-colored hair from her eyes and knew this was the perfect time for the release. She walked out to the mudroom, where the family hung their slickers and slipped off their boots. Wood for the fireplace was stacked against the wall--pine wainscoting darkened with time and salt air. Kindling was saved in a copper kettle, and two animal hutches, brought home from her veterinary office, stood in the corner. They were covered with pieces of bright fabric--an old slipcover and curtain--to keep the birds and animals from being frightened, and Rumer knelt down to lift the cloth on the lowest hutch. There, huddled in back, was the small brown rabbit. Liquid eyes stared, whiskers quivering. She had found him six weeks earlier, lying stunned near the angel statue on the border of her yard and the Mayhews'. The talon marks on his back had made her think an owl had caught him, lifted him into the sky. This little guy was fighter enough to squirm hard, wriggle free, and drop to earth. It had been a long fall, but she had set his leg, stitched his cuts, and he had survived. "Oh, Rumer," her mother had said to her once when she was eleven and had stayed up all night watching over a baby blue jay who had fallen out of its nest, "Nature can be harsh--sometimes baby birds are born sick, and their mothers push them out. We just don't know. . . ." "I know," Rumer had said stubbornly. "He was just trying to fly a little too soon. He's going to be fine. I'll take care of him, and then I'll put him back." "He won't be accepted, Rumer," said Mrs. Mayhew--her mother's best friend since childhood. "Not after he's been touched by humans." "Yes, he will," Rumer had said, undeterred, making him a nest in an old shoe box. "I'm sure of it." "Well, just don't forget to take care of yourself as well. Okay, honey? Little girls need sleep too." Rumer had listened, but inside she felt so thrilled and alive, as if she'd never need sleep again. But the next day, when she checked on the small jay, she found him dead in the shoe box. Her insides felt like ice, numbness spreading into her fingers as she gently touched the bird's wings, discovering the broken bones. Zeb helped her bury him, she remembered now: by the angel statue between their yards. Kneeling there, digging the hole and smelling the fresh dirt, she knew that she wanted to learn everything there was about helping animals, and she whispered to Zeb, "I'm going to be a vet." "No kidding, Lark