#aww2019 · 2019 Reviews · blog tour · contemporary fiction · new release · romance

#Blog Tour – Book Review: One Summer in Santorini by Sandy Barker

Title: One Summer in Santorini One Summer In Santorini - Sandy Barker - Updated small

Author: Sandy Barker

Published: June 24th 2019

Publisher: Avon Books

Pages: 400

Genres: Fiction, Contemporary, Romance

Rating: 4 stars

There was something in the air that night. . .

Sarah has had enough of men. It’s time to rekindle her first true love – travel – so she books a sailing trip around the Greek islands with a group of strangers.

The very last thing Sarah wants is to meet someone new, but then a gorgeous American man boards her yacht… And when she also encounters a handsome silver fox who promises her the world, she realises that trouble really does come in twos.

Will Sarah dive into a holiday fling or stick to her plan to steer clear of men, continue her love affair with feta and find her own way after all?

The perfect holiday read to escape with this summer, for fans of Annie Robertson’s My Mamma Mia Summer and Mandy Baggot’s One Last Greek Summer.

Review:

‘This book began as a love letter – to one of my favourite places in the world, Greece, but mostly to my partner Ben, who I met on a pier in Santorini, just as we were to embark on a ten-day sailing trip.’

Acknowledgements, Sandy Barker, author of One Summer in Santorini

Fun, adventure, romance, friendships, culture and the warmth of an island escape combine to form the latest book penned by Australian author Sandy Barker, One Summer in Santorini. A welcoming book that provides a gentle life lesson on finding your passion and direction in life, along with indulging in a holiday dalliance, is at the heart of this seducing novel.

‘I looked out my window as the plane banked and there it was, Santorini, a crescent of rusty land in a sea of deep blue. It was stunning.’

Imagine, what could be more perfect than throwing your cares aside, in favour of a island hopping cruise on board a glamorous yacht around the Greek Islands. I feel like Greece has been on my holiday wish list for far too long and I know I physically won’t be able to get to this idyllic part of the world anytime soon. However, thanks to Sandy Barker’s new novel, One Summer in Santorini, I was able to experience the perfect armchair traveller sojourn – and my own summer in Santorini. Through the entire novel I felt like I was standing right by Sarah, the main protagonist’s side. The descriptions and sense of place was incredibly vivid within the pages of this novel.

Sarah, who takes on the star role of this novel, is likeable, bubbly and inspiring. Sarah is also touched with plenty of realism so I did find I could sympathise with her at many points of this novel. Barker’s presentation of Sarah is intuitive and honest. As Sarah grappled with her emotions and true feelings beneath the backdrop of this exotic destination, it compels the reader to turn the pages of this book at a rapid pace. In fact, I found One Summer in Santorini to be a consuming and quick read, filled with engaging characters.

Romance directs much of this novel. We are first introduced the Sarah, the lead protagonist’s relationship woes from the opening of this novel and she does carry around some baggage for the bulk of this novel. While trying to let go of a past relationship, Sarah throws caution into the wind in the love department.  We watch on as Sarah grapples with her feelings for two men. These love interests are contrasted, both in age and personality. I enjoyed following along as Sarah worked out her emotions, feelings, desires and hopes in the love department. This is offset by a focus on the brief but impressionable friendships and connections we make while travelling.

As I have mentioned, I would dearly love to get to Greece one day. Sandy Barker certainly conjured all the sights, sounds, smells and highlights of this stunning European locale. This is assisted at every point by a strong depth of firsthand knowledge and the author’s clear enthusiasm for this part of the world. The food sequences were deeply authentic and mouth-watering. I also greatly appreciated the detailed descriptions of navigating your way around the streets and buildings of various Greek Islands. I thought this was a standout feature of the book.

Not only is One Summer in Santorini a passionate ode to the Greek Islands, I guarantee that it will inspire plenty of wanderlust! With a cliffhanger ending that left me begging for more, I am hoping we will see the return of Sandy Barker’s travel inspired contemporary romance writing very soon!

One Summer in Santorini by Sandy Barker was published on 24th June 2019. Details on how to purchase the book can be found here.

To learn more about the author of One Summer in Santorini, Sandy Barker, visit here.

*I wish to thank the author, Sandy Barker, for providing me with a free copy of this book for review purposes.

One Summer in Santorini is book #90 of the 2019 Australian Women Writers Challenge


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