Title: Everything We Keep
Author: Kerry Lonsdale
Publisher: Lake Union Publishing
Copyright: August 1, 2016
Format: E-Book, 306 Pages, $8.21 [Amazon Paperback], $4.99 [Kindle], $0.00 [KindleUnlimited], $10.49 [Audible], $8.36 [Barnes & Noble Paperback], $13.99 [iBooks], $9.95 [iBooks Audiobooks]
Sous chef Aimee Tierney has the perfect recipe for the perfect life: marry her childhood sweetheart, raise a family, and buy out her parents’ restaurant. But when her fiancé, James Donato, vanishes in a boating accident, her well-baked future is swept out to sea. Instead of walking down the aisle on their wedding day, Aimee is at James’s funeral – a funeral that leaves her more unsettled than at peace.
As Aimee struggles to reconstruct her life, she delves deeper into James’s disappearance. What she uncovers is an ocean of secrets that make her question everything about the life they built together. And just below the surface is a truth that may set Aimee free…or shatter her forever.
A luminous debut with unexpected twists, Everything We Keep explores the devastation of loss, the euphoria of finding love again, and the pulse-racing repercussions of discovering the truth about the ones we hold dear and the lengths they will go to protect us.
Aimee Tierney had it all: she was going to marry her handsome childhood sweetheart, they were going to start a life together, and live happily ever after. Or so she thought! Her life is changed forever the day she learns her beloved fiancé James has died in a mysterious boating accident while on a business trip in Mexico. To add insult to injury, she is forced to attend her fiancé’s funeral on the same day and in the same church they were supposed to be married. It’s like her worst nightmare has materialized.
She attends the funeral alongside James’s family members, her parents, and two of her closest friends. As she is walking out of the church, a strange woman who calls herself Lacy approaches her and utters three of the most troublesome words imaginable, “James is alive.” Offering Aimee her card, Lacy disappears just as quickly and mysteriously as she appeared.
In a surprising gesture, Thomas Donato, brother of her deceased fiancé, gives Aimee a check for $277,000. He doesn’t say much by way of explanation and excuses himself. The next day, Aimee learns that her parents who have been running the Old Irish Goat, a pub for years, are finally retiring from the business. Aimee is shocked and dismayed at the unexpected revelation as she has been working there for years. Her first thought is to purchase the Old Irish Goat but it soon dawns on her that she can open up the cafe that she’s been dreaming about for a long time.
Kerry Lonsdale’s Everything We Keep is a delicious synthesis of different genres: romance, mystery, adventure, drama, comedy, and thriller. Not only is it well-written with a cast of delightful characters, it is a satisfyingly human story. I felt for Aimee when it was difficult for her to pick up the shards of her shattered life and move on. I confess there were lulls when the story seemed to be slow but then there were times when I was on the edge of my seat. The different characters such as her friends (Nadia and Kristen), James’s mysterious and sometimes troublesome family members (such as his creepy cousin, Phil), and the heartthrob photographer Ian really kept things interesting. The ending had an amazing twist that really made me enjoy the book all the more. Without a doubt, I give this book five Red Lancaster Roses!