About the book, The Seacrest:
They say it’s better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.
Finn McGraw disagrees.
He was just seventeen when he had a torrid summer affair with the girl who stole his heart—and then inexplicably turned on him. Finn may have moved on with his life, but he’s never forgotten her.
Now, ten years later, he’s got more than his lost love to worry about. A horrific accident turns his life upside down, resurrecting the ghosts of his long-dead family and taking the lives of the few people he has left.
Finn always believed his estranged brother was responsible for the fire that killed their family—but an unexpected inheritance with a mystery attached throws everything he knows into doubt.
And on top of that, the beguiling daughter of his wealthy employer has secrets of her own. But the closer he gets, the harder she pushes him away.
The Seacrest is a story of intrigue and betrayal, of secrets and second chances—and above all, of a love that never dies.
When author Aaron Lazar contacted me with an invitation to read and review his latest novel, The Seacrest, I said yes, even though my to-be-reviewed stack is a bit overwhelming, and I’m glad I did, because I’m a fanatic for “beach books,” and this qualifies.
I should clarify that when I say “beach book,” I mean anything with a coastal flavor. Elin Hilderbrand’s work is my typical summer addiction, and as I was reading The Seacrest, I was mentally comparing Lazar to Hilderbrand, and thinking, “This book could easily be a male POV equivalent.” I stand by that, but I mean it in a good way, except that where some of Hilderbrand’s characters (mostly the men) seem to be pastel-clad cardboard cutouts, ALL of the characters in this novel are fully realized.
I particularly liked the way the book alternates scenes in the present with flashbacks of first love, and young love. I enjoyed the way the characters flaws and personal issues not only served the story, but also made them seem more real. Love is messy and crazy and earthy, and Lazar does a really good job of capturing that – the conflict, the indecision, the hopes and dreams – in a way that is never smarmy, and ultimately very satisfying.
Finn and Libby, the central characters of the story, are people I wouldn’t mind buying blueberries or art from, or meeting in the local diner. I love that Finn’s dog Ace is such a stalwart companion, as are Libby’s horses. I love the tease in the first several flashbacks, when you’re not quite certain who “Sassy,” – Finn’s first love – is.
The characters whom we meet ONLY in flashbacks (ome more recent than others), Finn’s wife Cora and brother Jax, are no less real, and no less dimensional. Their story is as compelling as the central tale, and provides both counterpoint and balance. (Also, as an amateur cellist myself, I had to grin at Cora’s choice of instrument.)
I haven’t read any of Aaron Lazar’s other work, but if all of his writing is as interesting and entertaining as The Seacrest he’s found a new fan in me.
Goes well with: Blueberry muffins and a steaming mug of French roast coffee with a dollop of half&half.
About the author, Aaron Paul Lazar
Aaron Paul Lazar writes to soothe his soul. An award-winning, bestselling Kindle author of three addictive mystery series, writing books, and a new love story, Aaron enjoys the Genesee Valley countryside in upstate New York, where his characters embrace life, play with their dogs and grandkids, grow sumptuous gardens, and chase bad guys.