One Summer by David Baldacci (♦♦♦)

Thirty-five year-old army veteran Jack Armstrong is dying from a rare disease. His last wish is to make it until Christmas…But on Christmas night his wife dies in a car accident on her way back from the pharmacy where she had gone to pick up Jack’s medication. Soon after his wife’s funeral, his mother-in-law offers to take his kids away and put him in a hospice to spend there his last days alone. As his kids are taken from him, Jack miraculously starts to recover, and after two months, he is given a clean bill of health and is discharged from the hospice.

After his recovery, Jack travels across the country to pick up his three kids who are living with relatives in the West Coast. With his best friend Sammy in tow, as well as Corey, Jack Jr. and Michelle--his three kids--Jack moves to a beach house he has recently inherited in the coast of South Carolina. As Jack befriends Jenna Fontaine--a town’s business owner and former DC lawyer—and her son Liam, his own issues with his kids and the way he has been dealing with his grief come into play and he has a new opportunity to heal and bring his family together once again.

This book is a fast read, but one feels the story drags along describing Jack’s bereavement and his inability to mend his family. However, Jenna’s character proves to be his salvation and the book’s too for she is wise and helps enlighten some family members about each other’s plight. As the story progresses, it warms up as a South Carolinian summer, and the last pages are read with a mixture of concern and faith in the fate of this family.