Happy Monday, readers! Today I'm a stop on the TLC blog tour for Marybeth Mayhew Whalen's latest, The Things We Wish Were True.
It's summer time, the kids are out of school, the local pool is open, and the local gossip is making the rounds. An old neighbor has returned, stirring up long forgotten feelings, and a new neighbor almost drowns. It's that near drowning that draws Lance, Jencey, Zell, and Bryte together. It's also the incident that becomes a catalyst for change and revelations - some good and some bad.
Jencey left the neighborhood years ago. She left behind her boyfriend, who is now married to her best friend, and started fresh. But now that her husband has been arrested, Jencey finds she has nowhere else to go.
Bryte doesn't want to worry about Jencey's return. She and her husband love each other and are even considering a second child. Well, her husband is considering. Bryte is considering going back to work instead, something she hasn't yet told Everett.
Zell's kids are grown and gone but she feels a kinship with neighbor Lance, who's wife has left him. Her offer to help with his kids over the summer isn't completely altruistic, though: she feels responsible for his wife's leaving.
And then there are Cailey and Cutter, the two new kids in the neighborhood. Renters amongst a bevy of owners, their mother works all the time leaving the kids to fend for themselves. Cailey looked away for just a second. Just a minute where she played with the idea of having friends of her own. And that's all it took for Cutter to nearly lose his life.
There are a lot of characters in The Things We Wish Were True. As chapters alternate between them, we realize that (like any neighborhood) things are not as rosy as they might appear on the outside. Behind closed doors, there are secrets stirring. The biggest, for me, were Jencey's reason for leaving, Zell's connection to Lance's wife leaving, and the subtle mentions of a missing girl.
The Things We Wish Were True is certainly, you can probably tell from my synopsis, a very character driven story. We all know how I fell about those. And yet this cast of characters did appeal to me quite a bit. It was easy to want follow their stories, Cailey's in particular. And while I wouldn't call this book dark by any means, the hint of something menacing was, of course, a draw for me as well.
To see more stops on the tour be sure to check out the official TLC tour page here.
For more on Marybeth Mayhew Whalen you can visit her website here. You can also find her at She Reads, like her on Facebook, and follow her on Twitter.
Purchase Links: Amazon | Books a Million | Barnes & Noble