Summer on a Sunny Island by Sue Moorcroft

I have read a lot of Sue Moorcroft’s books and found them very enjoyable. However, for some unfathomable reason, I did not enjoy Summer on a Sunny Island as much as I was expecting to.

This is partly down to the opening chapters, which seem to begin abruptly, almost as if there is a bit missing, and the reader has been thrown into the story part way through. There was also a bit too much description of the island for my taste; at times it read like a travel guide. The main problem was that I could not warm to the main characters, Rosa and Zach, and I realise that I’m in a minority here. They are well written and believable, but I just did not take to them.

This is not a light-hearted romantic comedy, but a much darker story than the title would suggest – peer pressure leading young men into gangs and criminal activity, dysfunctional families, and controlling and abusive men feature strongly in the story. This is all dealt with in a sensitive and empathetic way, and by the end of the book there has been some resolution.

The women are strong independent characters, used to standing on their own two feet, which is just as well since the behaviour of a lot of the male characters leaves a lot to be desired. I particularly enjoyed the scene near the end with Marcus and the electricity bill – but you’ll have to read it for yourself!

Summer on a Sunny Island is a well-written story with an unusual and colourful setting; just what everyone needs at the moment when the possibility of travel to sunny islands is not on the cards. Thanks to the author, publisher and NetGalley for a copy in exchange for an honest review.  

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