Thursday, May 23, 2024

Book Review: Summers at the Saint by Mary Kay Andrews

Pages: 448
Genre: Adult Fiction
Pub. Date: May 7, 2024
Publisher: St. Martin's
Source: Publisher for review
Other Books By Author: The Weekenders,
My Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
Goodreads says, "Everyone refers to the St. Cecelia as “the Saint.” If you grew up coming here, you were “a Saint.” If you came from the wrong side of the river, you were “an Ain’t.” Traci Eddings was one of those outsiders whose family wasn’t rich enough or connected enough to vacation here. But she could work here. One fateful summer she did, and married the boss’s son. Now, she’s the widowed owner of the hotel, determined to see it return to its glory days, even as staff shortages and financial troubles threaten to ruin it. Plus, her greedy and unscrupulous brother-in-law wants to make sure she fails. Enlisting a motley crew of recently hired summer help—including the daughter of her estranged best friend—Traci has one summer season to turn it around. But new information about a long-ago drowning at the hotel threatens to come to light, and the tragic death of one of their own brings Traci to the brink of despair.

Traci Eddings has her back against the pink-painted wall of this beloved institution. And it will take all the wits and guts she has to see wrongs put to right, to see guilty parties put in their place, and maybe even to find a new romance along the way. Told with Mary Kay Andrew’s warmth, humor, knack for twists, and eye for delicious detail about human nature, Summers at the Saint is a beach read with depth and heart."

Traci has inherited the St. Cecilia Resort from her late husband and she hopes to pull it out of bankruptcy. As a child, she has always looked at this resort from afar and dreamed of all the luxury. Now she is in charge, but things aren't easy. Her late husband's family is fighting for control of the hotel, not to mention there's a new resort in town is giving the Saint some competition. Then things go from worse to even worse when there is a murder that occurs at the hotel. Traci desperately tries to do damage control along with all the other workers at the Saint, including the landscaper, who is a former private investigator. This occurrence sheds light on another terrible event that happened at the Saint years before involving a drowning. If you enjoy your beach reads with a side of mystery and murder, Mary Kay Andrews has got you covered with Summers at the Saint.

Poor Traci has a lot going on in Summers at the Saint. Running a luxurious hotel isn't easy and add in new workers, her late husband's family breathing down her neck, bankruptcy and now a murder.... a disaster, really. But things aren't all doom and gloom at the Saint. The beautiful setting of coastal Georgia was done well as well as all the details of a glamorous resort. It reminded me of Hilderbrand's The Hotel Nantucket in that it takes you behind the scenes of a summer resort, but to be honest, it didn't hit the spot like that novel.

I thought Summers at the Saint was just ok as far as beach reads go and not my favorite from Andrews. It was quite long as far as beach reads go and I thought the dialogue was a bit too hokey for me. Additionally, the murder and its aftermath were taken too lightly. The romance was barely present and instead, the mystery took center stage. On the other hand, Andrews did a good job really examining how a small beach town's townies interact with the visitors who come for the summer, and  how the politics of all that plays out, especially at a five-star resort. So, if you like your beach reads with a strong mystery, but one that won't keep you up at night, Summers at the Saint is a good fit. But, if you are like me and want a little more depth and quite honestly are getting tired of Andrews's formulaic mystery beach reads with cringy dialogue, you might want to pick up another novel instead. 

So, are you a fan of Mary Kay Andrews? Is Summers at the Saint on your summer TBR list? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.  



  1. I am currently (slogging?) my way through the audiobook version ... like you, it's not quite what I was expecting/hoping for from MK. It's not *bad* but it's definitely hitting different ... and feels very predictable. I'll finish - I'm close, although as long as I've been listening it seems like I should've been close for hours, ha - but it's feeling very middle of the road.

    1. Yes! Very middle of the road for sure. I feel the same way! Thanks for visiting, Rebecca.

  2. Oof, hokey dialogue - one of my biggest pet peeves!

    1. It was super hokey at times--much more than usual. Thanks for visiting, Angela!


I really appreciate your comments. Thank you!

Design by: Designer Blogs