This is a story that spans 28 summers just as the title suggests. Mallory Blessing inherits her aunt’s home in Nantucket Island in Massachusetts. It is a place that always brought her joy. As she settles in to her new home, her brother is planning to get married and asks her to let him have a couple of his best friends stay over Labor Day weekend as a bachelor party. She agrees and her brother Cooper and his two best friends arrive. Unfortunately for Cooper, after he arrives his future wife gives him an ultimatum to return home or call off the wedding. This will not be the last poor choice of brides Cooper chooses.
Once Cooper leaves, his friend Frazier meets a girl on the island and spends the rest of the weekend with her. This leaves Mallory and his friend Jake McCloud on their own for three days. This leads to a romance that spans 28 years. They vow to be together no matter what “Same Time Next Year” (Jake and Mallory watch the movie every year).
Life takes many twists and turns for both of them. Jake marries a girl he has known since his childhood and has a daughter. As his wife’s political ambitions increased, Jake often second guessed his decision to marry her. Mallory has several romantic relationships and has a son whose father remains a close part of his son’s life and Mallory’s. But through it all the feelings between Jake and Mallory remain strong and they spend Labor Day Weekend together every year, “no matter what”.
As the story ends on the final summer of 2020, Jake and Mallory’s grown children meet for the first time and remind the reader that while one chapter of life may end, another can grow from it.
Eilin Hilderbrand is a native of Nantucket and describes its beauty and harsh winters in perfect detail. If you have never read Elin Hilderbrand’s books, this is a good one to start with. For her regular fans I am sure it is already on their must read list.