Goodreads ~ Some people stay all summer long on the idyllic island of Belle Isle, North Carolina. Others come only for the weekends - and the mix between the regulars and “the weekenders” can sometimes make the sparks fly.
Riley Griggs has a season of good times with friends and family ahead of her on Belle Isle when things take an unexpected turn. While waiting for her husband to arrive on the ferry one Friday afternoon, Riley is confronted by a process server who thrusts papers into her hand. And her husband is nowhere to be found.
So she turns to her island friends for help and support but it turns out that each of them has their own secrets and the clock is ticking as the mystery deepens ... in a murderous way. Cocktail parties aside, Riley must find a way to investigate the secrets of Belle Island, the husband she might not really know, and the summer that could change everything.
Riley and her husband, Wendell, are in their mid-forties and have been having marital problems. As they head to spend the summer at Belle Isle, where Riley grew up, the plan is to tell their 12-year-old daughter, Maggy, they are getting a divorce. Wendell had promised that he would meet them at the ferry that would take them to Belle Isle but he doesn't show up. He does eventually show up ... but dead. The small-town police suspect Riley killed him and it's up to her and her best friend to figure out who did it and why.
In the meantime, Riley keeps coming into contact with Nate, who had broken her heart when she was a teenager. He is back to living on the island after the recent death of his father.
This is the first book I've read by this author. I liked the story and enjoyed the writing style. It is written in third person perspective focusing on wherever the action is. As a head's up, there is swearing.
I liked most of the characters. Riley was raised with money and was taken care of by her parents and then her husband. When that is all taken away from her, she must depend on herself to take care of her daughter. I must say I hated Maggy. What a spoiled brat! With all that her mother was going through, Maggy was no comfort to Riley. She snuck out, called her mother horrible names, talked back and was disrespectful. Riley barely disciplined her and blamed Maggy's behaviour on her diabetes (no excuse!). That doesn't say much for Riley's mothering skills. And speaking of mothers ... Riley's mother, Evelyn, was also unlikable. She was a snob and had the same values and beliefs from about 60 years ago.
I figured out the "how" as soon as it was mentioned. I was okay with the "who". I thought the "why" was a bit nutty.
I look forward to reading other books by this author.