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Michelle Sanderson may appear to be a strong, independent woman, but on the inside, she’s still the wounded girl who fled home years ago. A young army vet, Michelle returns to the quaint Blackberry Island Inn to claim her inheritance and recover from the perils of war. Instead, she finds the owner’s suite occupied by the last person she wants to see. Carly Williams and Mich Michelle Sanderson may appear to be a strong, independent woman, but on the inside, she’s still the wounded girl who fled home years ago. A young army vet, Michelle returns to the quaint Blackberry Island Inn to claim her inheritance and recover from the perils of war. Instead, she finds the owner’s suite occupied by the last person she wants to see. Carly Williams and Michelle were once inseparable, until a shocking betrayal destroyed their friendship. And now Carly is implicated in the financial disaster lurking behind the inn’s cheerful veneer. Single mother Carly has weathered rumors, lies and secrets for a lifetime, and is finally starting to move forward with love and life. But if the Blackberry Island Inn goes under, Carly and her daughter will go with it. To save their livelihoods, Carly and Michelle will undertake a turbulent truce. It’ll take more than a successful season to move beyond their devastating past, but with a little luck and a beautiful summer, they may just rediscover the friendship of a lifetime.


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Michelle Sanderson may appear to be a strong, independent woman, but on the inside, she’s still the wounded girl who fled home years ago. A young army vet, Michelle returns to the quaint Blackberry Island Inn to claim her inheritance and recover from the perils of war. Instead, she finds the owner’s suite occupied by the last person she wants to see. Carly Williams and Mich Michelle Sanderson may appear to be a strong, independent woman, but on the inside, she’s still the wounded girl who fled home years ago. A young army vet, Michelle returns to the quaint Blackberry Island Inn to claim her inheritance and recover from the perils of war. Instead, she finds the owner’s suite occupied by the last person she wants to see. Carly Williams and Michelle were once inseparable, until a shocking betrayal destroyed their friendship. And now Carly is implicated in the financial disaster lurking behind the inn’s cheerful veneer. Single mother Carly has weathered rumors, lies and secrets for a lifetime, and is finally starting to move forward with love and life. But if the Blackberry Island Inn goes under, Carly and her daughter will go with it. To save their livelihoods, Carly and Michelle will undertake a turbulent truce. It’ll take more than a successful season to move beyond their devastating past, but with a little luck and a beautiful summer, they may just rediscover the friendship of a lifetime.

30 review for Barefoot Season

  1. 4 out of 5

    Terry

    Looking for a beach read which the cover suggests. Well, you have all heard that you should never judge a book by its cover, and that remains true. I vacillated between a 3 or 4 star rating. Actually three and a half is what I would like to have rated it. I enjoyed this book....read it quickly...never thought about not finishing it...would try another book by this author even though I am not into the "romance" genre. The setting is charming and I would love to stay at this inn. The story is abou Looking for a beach read which the cover suggests. Well, you have all heard that you should never judge a book by its cover, and that remains true. I vacillated between a 3 or 4 star rating. Actually three and a half is what I would like to have rated it. I enjoyed this book....read it quickly...never thought about not finishing it...would try another book by this author even though I am not into the "romance" genre. The setting is charming and I would love to stay at this inn. The story is about the complexities of deep friendship. It is about betrayal, forgiveness and healing. At the ripe old age of 69, I see the betrayal as a folly of youth, stupidity, and immaturity. Therefore, it is forgiveable 10 years later when both women have matured and gone through life's hardships. One is a single mother, the other a vet with both physical and mental wounds. Both were strong women. I do like books about women's relationships with other women. I can totally relate to these friendships.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Myrna

    Ah yes, I found a great beach read! This one had the right amount of romance and drama to keep me reading. Great characters and ending too. Look forward to the rest of the series. Ah yes, I found a great beach read! This one had the right amount of romance and drama to keep me reading. Great characters and ending too. Look forward to the rest of the series.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Jacob Proffitt

    This was another gamble from our anniversary bookstore spree, though I've read enough Susan Mallery before to know that this was pretty likely to play out well. And I wasn't wrong. I really enjoyed the characters and seeing them come together, clash, rebound, and help (and sometimes hurt) each other. It's an excellent story of love and found-family and trust and forgiveness. Which is needed because Michelle and Carly had hurt each other dreadfully when young. I was worried it'd be a one-sided st This was another gamble from our anniversary bookstore spree, though I've read enough Susan Mallery before to know that this was pretty likely to play out well. And I wasn't wrong. I really enjoyed the characters and seeing them come together, clash, rebound, and help (and sometimes hurt) each other. It's an excellent story of love and found-family and trust and forgiveness. Which is needed because Michelle and Carly had hurt each other dreadfully when young. I was worried it'd be a one-sided story given how thoroughly Michelle betrayed Carly in their past and was prepared for a long slog of groveling from Michelle. Fortunately, Mallery is a good-enough writer to make it compellingly complex and still very believable of people who were flawed, it's true, but not maliciously so. Anyway, the setting and characters really made this work, but the story is complex enough that I'm going to leave it at that. There were a couple places where I thought the drama was a bit exaggerated and strained credulity ((view spoiler)[Carly with her daughter falling into the water on a crowded dock was in zero danger and her overreaction was marked and Michelle's refusal to seek help for her PTSD was just stupid and made no sense whatsoever because it wasn't like she needed to prove anything and literally everybody could see how close she was to breaking and told her so (in loving and supportive ways) (hide spoiler)] ). The exaggerated drama dropped this to four stars, so they weren't a small quibble for me. I suspect others may be just fine with how it works out, though, because so much of the rest held together remarkably well. I particularly liked the conclusion and how the scenes with their respective parents went. That could easily have descended into maudlin preaching (and negated much of the strength of the story) but Mallery navigated those troubled interactions very well, I think. And the conclusion was delightful. A note about Romance: This isn't really a romance story. Oh, there are romance storylines, but they are very much a background consideration. Indeed, the story ends before any of the included romance arcs really complete. Don't get me wrong, they're on solid ground and I expect they'll continue strong. But they aren't completed, if you know what I mean... A note about Steamy: There are two explicit sex scenes, (view spoiler)[pretty much one each for our main protagonists (hide spoiler)] . They weren't long, so this was the low-middle (or high-low) of my steam tolerance. They worked very well, I think, and did a great job of enhancing the story in the ways they needed to.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    As a true Mallery fan I pick up the newest book the day it comes out and it is usually done before I can let myself sleep, I know she is a great writer of romance, but this is not a romance and I was prepared to be disappointed........wow! Did Mallery prove me wrong once again as she proves that she can write so much more than romance and not let her readers down. This is a truly moving and poignant novel that will make new Mallery fans out of many new readers. Both Michelle and Carly are superb As a true Mallery fan I pick up the newest book the day it comes out and it is usually done before I can let myself sleep, I know she is a great writer of romance, but this is not a romance and I was prepared to be disappointed........wow! Did Mallery prove me wrong once again as she proves that she can write so much more than romance and not let her readers down. This is a truly moving and poignant novel that will make new Mallery fans out of many new readers. Both Michelle and Carly are superbly written characters that will leaving you feeling torn about who to side with. Michelle is an army vet returning home to Blackberry Island after ten years, wounded both inside and out. She returns to take over her family's small Bed and Breakfast, a place that has been run while Michelle is away by her ex-best friend Carly. Carly is a single mother, the one who was left behind when Michelle ran away, to clean up and carry on. When fate and the bank insist that the two must work together to run the Inn these two will have to try to overcome old hurts, heal old wounds, try not to cause new ones and see how far they can push the other until it all comes crashing down. Now this is still a Susan Mallery novel so you have a dash of romance thrown in here and there but it is not your average boy girl story and it is almost better with more choices and not knowing who will end up together in the end....will there be a happily ever after? But for who? A must read.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Anna

    Blackberry Island, Washington is a picture postcard town, attracting tourists throughout the summer. Michelle Sanderson owns the Blackberry Island Inn, but had left the running of the Inn to her mother and once best friend, Carly Williams. She's been serving in the military for the past ten years and is now back on the Island after being injured, ready to reclaim the Inn. Her mother has died, and has left the Inn in financial shambles. Michelle is suffering from her injury and the PTSD she has f Blackberry Island, Washington is a picture postcard town, attracting tourists throughout the summer. Michelle Sanderson owns the Blackberry Island Inn, but had left the running of the Inn to her mother and once best friend, Carly Williams. She's been serving in the military for the past ten years and is now back on the Island after being injured, ready to reclaim the Inn. Her mother has died, and has left the Inn in financial shambles. Michelle is suffering from her injury and the PTSD she has from her experience, but is determined to save the Inn from foreclosure. Carly has done her best to keep the Inn running smoothly, seeking stability for her and her daughter. With old wounds still festering, Michelle and Carly can't seem to agree on anything. But with the future of the Inn at stake, they must find a path to forgiveness and restoring the friendship they once valued. A light summer read, although it does deal with some serious issues. Looking forward to visiting Blackberry Island again soon in the next book in the series.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Andrea Corley

    This is my second book from Susan Mallery and I loved the first one so I had extremely high standards for this book. I think that Mallery does a wonderful job writing literary fiction and has the ability to write about real-life problems without completely romanticizing everything. I like the fact that not everything is like a fairytale, much like real life. Of course, everyone wants that happy ending, but I also like realistic, which I think Mallery has certainly mastered in her writing. I did f This is my second book from Susan Mallery and I loved the first one so I had extremely high standards for this book. I think that Mallery does a wonderful job writing literary fiction and has the ability to write about real-life problems without completely romanticizing everything. I like the fact that not everything is like a fairytale, much like real life. Of course, everyone wants that happy ending, but I also like realistic, which I think Mallery has certainly mastered in her writing. I did find a tad bit of difficulty in starting out on the book, however, once I got past the first few chapters, it was smooth sailing and I thoroughly enjoyed reading about Michelle and Carly. I thought that it was a great story, not similar to many other romance books. I have seen some complaints about the lack of romance in this story, however, I am just the opposite, and appreciated a real genuine story without all of the romance. I liked being able to hear about the life of Michelle and Carly and how they were trying to get back to their true selves and their true love for Blackberry Island. I thought that the characters were catty, sarcastic, and unforgettable. I enjoyed reading about characters that are not your ordinary people. I would have liked to learn more of how the relationships evolved at the end but there's more to the series, so we will see what follows. Overall, I really enjoyed reading this book and look forward to more Blackberry Island with Three Sisters!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Vicki

    I seriously really have enjoyed the books written by this author that I've read so far, so I'll continue to check out her writings. Barefoot Season is first off a fun, summery title. It makes me think of kicking of my shoes on the shores of an ocean, which in my case would be either Oceanside, California or in Kauai, Hawaii. This book is one that I'd read during a lazy, hazy day of summer. I hate to give any spoilers for this one. I'll just say that it is about the love/friendship of two women. W I seriously really have enjoyed the books written by this author that I've read so far, so I'll continue to check out her writings. Barefoot Season is first off a fun, summery title. It makes me think of kicking of my shoes on the shores of an ocean, which in my case would be either Oceanside, California or in Kauai, Hawaii. This book is one that I'd read during a lazy, hazy day of summer. I hate to give any spoilers for this one. I'll just say that it is about the love/friendship of two women. Women whose friendship is one of love that is lasting even through the devastation of hurt, anger, time (years) without knowing and having the love and friendship of the other for various reasons. But what I absolutely loved about this relationship is that eventually these women come face-to-face and deal with their issues. The author really did an excellent job illustrating just how two very damaged people with their own specific issues can allow love of a friendship to "rebind" them together.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Booklover

    Beautiful heart touching emotional second chance at life,friendship & love,as we get to know about Carly-Michelle once BFF now there is so much of anger,resentment,bitterness and distance,the story progressed really well after a decade fate has given them another opportunity.The friendship part of story progressed really well but the romance side was a little disappointed i wanted more of Jared-Michelle and Carly-Sam- how they grow close and their love blossoms.Overall its a beautiful book,a kee Beautiful heart touching emotional second chance at life,friendship & love,as we get to know about Carly-Michelle once BFF now there is so much of anger,resentment,bitterness and distance,the story progressed really well after a decade fate has given them another opportunity.The friendship part of story progressed really well but the romance side was a little disappointed i wanted more of Jared-Michelle and Carly-Sam- how they grow close and their love blossoms.Overall its a beautiful book,a keeper for me. Recommend it

  9. 4 out of 5

    Susan Crowe

    This is the only Susan Mallery book that I have ever given less than 5*s to. Let me explain why I did. Throughout MOST of the book, I absolutely hated Michelle. (Who does she think she is, actually punching people???) I thought Sam was creepy and in the first part of the book, I wanted to thump Carly on the nose. But, by the end, I was liking everyone. (Sam was still creepy) But, I will definitely continue this series.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Alexa

    An excellent book about the hardships of what friendships can go through and how they can come back from it. It also touches on PTSD and how it can send one in a spiral yet one can come back from that too.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Lara

    This is my second book by Mallory, and I like her style. This book is about two women and their relationship after some past drama and a ten-year separation. There is romance, but it is placed at least third in importance. We have a wounded veteran who left home years before having to face emotional actions from her youth as well as manage her PTSD and physical pain. The PTSD definitely affected her behavior, and her expected denial and stubbornness lead to some problem acts on her part. The oth This is my second book by Mallory, and I like her style. This book is about two women and their relationship after some past drama and a ten-year separation. There is romance, but it is placed at least third in importance. We have a wounded veteran who left home years before having to face emotional actions from her youth as well as manage her PTSD and physical pain. The PTSD definitely affected her behavior, and her expected denial and stubbornness lead to some problem acts on her part. The other woman is dealing with a high school reputation that hasn't been true for at least 10 years, but she can't shake. She is a bit of a doo-gooder, and seems to be a bit of a victim. She starts to recognize the role she played in her past, and to stand up for herself during the time of the book (thank goodness). Both women have some really messed up family history, and since they grew up together and were best friends in the past, they were both impacted by their other family's drama. Then there is the drama that occurred between them right before Michelle left and joined the military. That emotional pain lead her to stay away on leaves and to complete three tours of duty, until she is wounded and sent home to recover. Coming home is not smooth. This is a small town, so everyone gets into everyone else's business. There are problems that developed during the past ten years that mean that Michelle and Carly must work together and need each other to survive. Michelle may still be harboring anger and hurt, but she has learned to separate her feelings from recognizing people's strengths. There are a lot of interpersonal dynamics, old history, and Michelle's PTSD that intermingle and become the focus of the story. The romantic interests are things that happen on top of everything else rather than being the focus of the story. And they become signs of healing and moving on.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Just - The romance reader

    I'm a huge Susan Mallery fan and although I enjoyed Blackberry Island it wasn't my favorite. The story wasn't focused mainly on romantic relationships like most of her writing, which is the genre that I most enjoy. What little bit of romance was in this one I did enjoy. The book focuses on Michelle's return from war as an injured vet. She comes home to take care of the Blackberry Inn, to recover from her injuries and try to find her life as a civilian again. All the while she must struggle to wo I'm a huge Susan Mallery fan and although I enjoyed Blackberry Island it wasn't my favorite. The story wasn't focused mainly on romantic relationships like most of her writing, which is the genre that I most enjoy. What little bit of romance was in this one I did enjoy. The book focuses on Michelle's return from war as an injured vet. She comes home to take care of the Blackberry Inn, to recover from her injuries and try to find her life as a civilian again. All the while she must struggle to work with Carly, her former best friend whom she has quite a tumulus past with. Carly struggles a great deal with Michelle's return as well, all the while worrying about whether she will be fired from her job running the inn that she loves. Both women are struggling to find themselves and trying to figure out how they can survive in such close proximity to one another. There is an obvious struggle for both women to let go of the wounds from their shared past while missing the good parts of their lost friendship.

  13. 4 out of 5

    🌈⭐️RoseOfRainbows⭐️🌈💕

    Hey guys so this is the second book I finished today and I absolutely am in love with this series! This is one of the best romance series I’ve read all year. It’s gotta be in my top 3 for sure. It’s so romantic and it’s not an insta romance which I usually would gravitate towards more but it worked well and the plot was very timely. The main character didn’t fall in love right away and it took till about 50% of the way in for any hint of romance but oh my gosh when it did it was beautiful. It wa Hey guys so this is the second book I finished today and I absolutely am in love with this series! This is one of the best romance series I’ve read all year. It’s gotta be in my top 3 for sure. It’s so romantic and it’s not an insta romance which I usually would gravitate towards more but it worked well and the plot was very timely. The main character didn’t fall in love right away and it took till about 50% of the way in for any hint of romance but oh my gosh when it did it was beautiful. It was gentle, kind. Soft. The main character has come back from war and is injured not only physically but mentally. And when she falls in love it’s the most beautiful thing. One thing I really loved about it was that it focused really more on her friends and family relationships instead of centering it around romance. It was perfect. I highly recommend it as a summer read or really a great anytime read. It’s relaxing. Gentle. Everything readers want and then some. 5/5 stars ⭐️

  14. 4 out of 5

    Maria

    I couldn't put this one down. It is an emotional wringer from beginning to end, spiralling down until you think it can't go any further, and finally, finally there is hope. The dog was a nice touch and just in the nick of time. For those of you looking for romance, it takes a back seat to other issues in this book, but it is there. I couldn't put this one down. It is an emotional wringer from beginning to end, spiralling down until you think it can't go any further, and finally, finally there is hope. The dog was a nice touch and just in the nick of time. For those of you looking for romance, it takes a back seat to other issues in this book, but it is there.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Judy & Marianne from Long and Short Reviews

    Originally posted at: http://longandshortreviews.blogspot.c... You just never know when it's time to confront your past. Let go of the pain, make amends with those you once loved. In Barefoot Season, Ms. Mallery sets the stage for two women, once friends, until betrayal tore them apart. Carly and Michelle were like sisters at one point. Who would have thought they envied each other, never once sharing those feelings with one another? Michelle, bitter and angry, has come back from serving in the mi Originally posted at: http://longandshortreviews.blogspot.c... You just never know when it's time to confront your past. Let go of the pain, make amends with those you once loved. In Barefoot Season, Ms. Mallery sets the stage for two women, once friends, until betrayal tore them apart. Carly and Michelle were like sisters at one point. Who would have thought they envied each other, never once sharing those feelings with one another? Michelle, bitter and angry, has come back from serving in the military. Though she isn't very likable at first, it's understandable why she acts the way she does. As the story progresses, Michelle is redeemed into a character I cared about. I'd hoped things would work out for her in the beginning, despite her attitude. She's got a lot to own up to, and people to deal with she'd left behind all those years ago. It's never easy. Then there's Carly, the other heroine. She works hard to be the best mother she can be for her daughter. She doesn't allow her past to overcome her, though there are people on Blackberry Island who don't ever want to let her forgot who she once was. The fears within her about her Michelle's homecoming turn into surprise. Carly and Michelle are pushed into working together to save something they both care about - the inn. It looks almost as if history may repeat itself again when Carly shows feelings for Sam, and he takes a liking to Carly and her daughter. For Michelle, her love interest is less subtle, but it does show promise with Jared. Though Both Sam and Jared play a role in this book, their relationship with the woman doesn't take a leading role in the story. I was particularly interested in how the story would play out with Sam, as he knows both Carly and Michelle. I would have loved to learn more about Jared, but his character wasn't as up front and center as some of the others. Ms. Mallery creates another delightful story with emotion and depth readers are bound to fall in love with. When picking up a book by this author, we know one thing- we're in for a wonderful heartwarming ride. Barefoot Season is no different. The bonds of friendship and family are tested within the pages of this novel. Let's not forget about falling in love. Both Michelle and Carly have a chance for happiness. This book aims to please. It's one that belongs on the keeper shelf, to be read over and over again. Michelle and Carly, plus all the other characters in this book found their way into my heart and mind, even when the book was finished. If you're a fan of contemporary women's fiction with strong romance elements, then I strongly suggest Barefoot Season.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Jane Stewart

    Very good. THE SERIES: This is book 1 in the Blackberry Island Trilogy. Each book can be read as a stand alone. This author has written many romances which are primarily about relationships between men and women. For a change in this series she is writing about relationships between women as friends or sister-like. And I like the change. And I like that at the end of each book, the main female character also has a happy romantic ending with a guy. The main stories are about women, their friends, a Very good. THE SERIES: This is book 1 in the Blackberry Island Trilogy. Each book can be read as a stand alone. This author has written many romances which are primarily about relationships between men and women. For a change in this series she is writing about relationships between women as friends or sister-like. And I like the change. And I like that at the end of each book, the main female character also has a happy romantic ending with a guy. The main stories are about women, their friends, and choices in life, but secondary stories include their romantic life. THIS BOOK: Two women are trying to save a small tourist town inn from bankruptcy. They were friends in high school but not currently. Traumas, crises, and disappointments in life caused problems for them and their relationship. During the story we hear about things from the past. Michelle is a b***ch. I did not like her or things she did during the first half of the book. But I viewed it as every story needs a bad guy and she was it. Then Michelle changed. I liked what happened with her in the last part of the book. I loved reading about Carly. She had the most wonderful attitude and wonderful work ethic and was a good mother. Such a joy to read about. I loved the way she responded to various problems with the inn. And just for fun, I am glad the author added a little romance for both Carly and Michelle toward the end. It did not feel thrown in. It was nicely developed. But I can’t call this a romance because the romantic relationships were not the main focus of the story. But they gave me a warm comfy feeling at the end. AUDIOBOOK NARRATOR: At first I was hesitant about the narrator Sarah Grace. I felt like she was reading a textbook, not thinking about what she was reading. But I didn’t notice that later on. She did various voices well. I would be happy to listen to her again. (view spoiler)[ The bank loan officer apparently did some unethical things. At the end the author tells us laws or regulations were violated and there were personnel changes at the bank. I was confused. I wanted more details. Did Ellen lose her job? What exactly did she violate? The author did not explain - that frustrated me. (hide spoiler)] DATA: Narrative mode: 3rd person. Unabridged audiobook length: 9 hrs and 43 mins. Sweaing language: mild. Sexual language: mild. Number of sex scenes: 2. Setting: current day island near Seattle, Washington. Book copyright: 2012. Genre: womens fiction with romance.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Maggie61

    I read this book all on one day, mostly in one sitting. It's the story of two ex best friends, Michelle and Carly that were friends as children, had a falling out due to circumstances beyond their control , reunited as friends only to have their friendship fall apart again by an act of betrayal. Fast forward ten years when Michelle returns from the war to run the inn that her father left her and finds that Carly has been running the inn for many Years. She also finds out that the inn is in finan I read this book all on one day, mostly in one sitting. It's the story of two ex best friends, Michelle and Carly that were friends as children, had a falling out due to circumstances beyond their control , reunited as friends only to have their friendship fall apart again by an act of betrayal. Fast forward ten years when Michelle returns from the war to run the inn that her father left her and finds that Carly has been running the inn for many Years. She also finds out that the inn is in financial ruin and she needs to find a way to hold on to the inn. There is so much character studies in this novel, Michelle, whose fathers desertion left her in the care of an overbearing non caring mother, so much that she ran off to war after the final incident with Carly. Michelle comes back so damaged physically and mentally that it seems that in her quest for self destruction, nothing can repair her, not even Jared whose house is where she's renting a room. Carly was hired by Michelle's mother, a self centred woman who lied continuously to keep Carly grateful to have her job. Ellen the bank employee who lies about the financial details and can't let go of old high school resentment. Why did Michelle's father and Carly's mother run off together leaving Carly with a drunken abusive father and Michelle with a vindictive bitch of a mother who was always jealous of michelles relationship with her father, a who later ruined the inn financially as some sort of twisted payback. Damaris, the cook, who has been like a mother to Michelle since her own mother left, shocks and further damages Michelle with her own part of the financial ruin. Damaris was the one constant, the only one she trusted, to have to face that damaris didn't have Michelle's best interests at heart and thought she could justify her actions. Take all this, revenge and backstabbing and throw in some sarcasm and humour and some romance and this books makes for a great escape. Above all, it's a story of two friends who can forgive, two friends whose bond is so strong they can overcome the past. Loved this book, I will read Three sisters next.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    Very good book. Michelle returned to Blackberry Island with several issues to deal with. First was her recovery from war injuries and dealing with her PTSD. Then she had to take over running the inn. She also had to deal with her former friend Carly, who has been running the inn while Michelle was away. Seeing Michelle as she tried to cope was sometimes very painful. From the outside looking in, you can see that the drinking is making it worse, and the stresses of the inn are not helping either. Very good book. Michelle returned to Blackberry Island with several issues to deal with. First was her recovery from war injuries and dealing with her PTSD. Then she had to take over running the inn. She also had to deal with her former friend Carly, who has been running the inn while Michelle was away. Seeing Michelle as she tried to cope was sometimes very painful. From the outside looking in, you can see that the drinking is making it worse, and the stresses of the inn are not helping either. I liked seeing that she had people who were worried about her and wanted to help if she would let them. Jared especially was very good at being there when he was needed. I liked when he gave her the dog to help. There were many problems with the inn, not the least of which were the mortgages that she knew nothing about. I loved the fact that she and Carly were able to work together to do what was needed to save the inn. It also helped them start to repair their relationship, which both of them needed. The addition of Sam and Jared to their lives was just what they needed. I loved the way the two of them banded together to stand up to the bank bitch. I'm looking forward to the next one.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Vickie

    For a synopsis, click here: Barefoot Season I loved how Susan Mallery hit PTSD and returning military veterans right on the head with Michelle Sanderson. PTSD is real and the return to the civilian world is not seamless, not matter who/what is waiting for the veteran back home. I also liked how Susan Mallery addressed the ridiculousness of high school and small town attitudes with Carly Williams. For heaven's sake, people need to either grow up or move away. Leave the past in the past. Both women For a synopsis, click here: Barefoot Season I loved how Susan Mallery hit PTSD and returning military veterans right on the head with Michelle Sanderson. PTSD is real and the return to the civilian world is not seamless, not matter who/what is waiting for the veteran back home. I also liked how Susan Mallery addressed the ridiculousness of high school and small town attitudes with Carly Williams. For heaven's sake, people need to either grow up or move away. Leave the past in the past. Both women are characters who are growing up, facing pain and betrayal, but learn that love and friendship is the first step to healing.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Chelsea Moreen

    A really nice story and romance, I ended up really liking the characters. I think that the PTSD representation seemed very realistic, more real than in any book I’ve read before, this is coming from someone who doesn’t deal with PTSD and I have nothing to judge it against however. I did have a few problems with this book though, slut-shaming, sexism and a sexual assault which is romanticized, kissing someone who is asleep who you barely know is disgusting and not cute, and then telling that pers A really nice story and romance, I ended up really liking the characters. I think that the PTSD representation seemed very realistic, more real than in any book I’ve read before, this is coming from someone who doesn’t deal with PTSD and I have nothing to judge it against however. I did have a few problems with this book though, slut-shaming, sexism and a sexual assault which is romanticized, kissing someone who is asleep who you barely know is disgusting and not cute, and then telling that person they 'shouldn't tempt you', bitch she was asleep!!!!!. Overall I think if you want a quick romance read this fits the bill despite the issues I have with it.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Rossy

    Very satisfying, loved the characters and the setting! Honestly, I didn't think I was going to enjoy this book because I have stopped being interested in the author's Fool Gold's series. She does really well with contemporary women though; and this book was more about the relationship as sisters, than the romance. Very satisfying, loved the characters and the setting! Honestly, I didn't think I was going to enjoy this book because I have stopped being interested in the author's Fool Gold's series. She does really well with contemporary women though; and this book was more about the relationship as sisters, than the romance.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Dee

    Two-haiku review: Wounded, she goes home Finds frenemy running inn Can't get over hurt Two women's issues Injuries, anguish of war Single motherhood Two-haiku review: Wounded, she goes home Finds frenemy running inn Can't get over hurt Two women's issues Injuries, anguish of war Single motherhood

  23. 5 out of 5

    Tammi

    It is a Susan Mallery book and she never disappoints me. I love Michelle character in this book. Thank you to my wonderful sister in law for introducing me to Susan Mallery books.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Christina (A Reader of Fictions)

    Though I liked Barefoot Season from the start, it didn't get under my skin until the second half. I went from distantly enjoying and slowly working through it to consistently reading to devouring it. Mallery focuses primarily on the relationship between Carly and Michelle, a relationship that is messed up due to a number of factors from their past. There are romances for both of them, and I liked the romances, but it's much more a book about their emotional journeys than it is about romance. This Though I liked Barefoot Season from the start, it didn't get under my skin until the second half. I went from distantly enjoying and slowly working through it to consistently reading to devouring it. Mallery focuses primarily on the relationship between Carly and Michelle, a relationship that is messed up due to a number of factors from their past. There are romances for both of them, and I liked the romances, but it's much more a book about their emotional journeys than it is about romance. This is a contemporary novel with romance rather than a contemporary romance novel. From the start, I liked Michelle. She's not a heroine I see a lot of in fiction, though that could be because I don't read too much genre romance. Michelle's a veteran, returning home with a busted hip and PTSD with the aim to take over the family inn. She's crotchety, mean, and uncomfortable with any sort of emotion. She's not handling being back well, and the fact that the inn is struggling because of her late mother's irresponsible spending doesn't help. Nor does being around Carly and memories of her mother, as Michelle joined the army to escape them. Barefoot Season ends up being all about Michelle's mental health journey, which I love. And omg every single scene with Chance the dog made me tear up, because he's doing so well and I love him. Though I felt more personally connected to the irascible Michelle's journey, I did also like Carly's. I like that she feels very much like an average woman, but that she gets to be a heroine, and that her journey is about overcoming her fears and finding more confidence. This was so much less fluffy than I was expecting, but it definitely delivers that at the end. I really enjoyed this, and I'm looking forward to reading more Mallery. This is only my second, but I've greatly enjoyed both.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Colleen

    Great book. I thought this was a really great book. It seemed at first that Michelle did wrong, but once you start getting into the book that you see Carly did hurtful things herself. It was a shame that Michelle’s Mother treated both girls terrible. They both had it bad with both their parents when they left together leaving behind their children. In the end Michelle and Carly both made something out of themselves with really no help from any parents. Michelle went into the military and save sev Great book. I thought this was a really great book. It seemed at first that Michelle did wrong, but once you start getting into the book that you see Carly did hurtful things herself. It was a shame that Michelle’s Mother treated both girls terrible. They both had it bad with both their parents when they left together leaving behind their children. In the end Michelle and Carly both made something out of themselves with really no help from any parents. Michelle went into the military and save several soldiers and Carly practically taking over the inn and keeping it afloat. I’m so glad they made their way back to eac other.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Beth Lechman

    I was surprised one day when I received this book in the mail from the author. Very pleasantly surprised as this book was not at all what I was expecting. The character of Michelle Sanderson is strong yet vulnerable at the same time. Mallory did an awesome job in showing what Army Vet Michelle Sanderson was dealing with. Not just hers struggles with healing from an injury but PTSD as well as personal problems. Well Written and well worth your time to read.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Diane Koenig

    This is the first book I've ready by Susan Mallery. I saw the second book in the series on the best selling book list, so I decided to start with #1. I usually read historical fiction, and this novel was a nice change of pace. It was contemporary, and dealt with some deep, dark issues facing veterans, families and best friends. Overall, a good, light read. I will continue with the Blackberry Island series. This is the first book I've ready by Susan Mallery. I saw the second book in the series on the best selling book list, so I decided to start with #1. I usually read historical fiction, and this novel was a nice change of pace. It was contemporary, and dealt with some deep, dark issues facing veterans, families and best friends. Overall, a good, light read. I will continue with the Blackberry Island series.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Megan

    This was an easy read, which is why I picked it from the Kindle Daily Deals selection at the end of a stressful work week. It looked a little hokey, but I actually was pleasantly surprised. I liked the story and build-up and character development...until the end which was very rushed for the pace of the rest of the book, making it feel cheesy and forced--a shame, since all but the last 1.25 chapters was interesting. I'm interested enough to continue the series, though--hopefully the next books a This was an easy read, which is why I picked it from the Kindle Daily Deals selection at the end of a stressful work week. It looked a little hokey, but I actually was pleasantly surprised. I liked the story and build-up and character development...until the end which was very rushed for the pace of the rest of the book, making it feel cheesy and forced--a shame, since all but the last 1.25 chapters was interesting. I'm interested enough to continue the series, though--hopefully the next books are more consistent in following through to the end, and I can give them at minimum the 4 stars I thought I would give this one, till that corny end!

  29. 4 out of 5

    Olga Godim

    3.5 stars An army vet with PTSD, a single mother with nowhere to go, old hurts, and new beginnings, collide in this novel, set on a charming island off the American West Coast. It was a nice read, a bit tear-jerking, but quick and well written. I already ordered the next book in this series from my library.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Brandy

    I loved this. Michelle is a badass in need of some serious healing, and Carly is freaking amazing but in a really tenuous position. I loved watching their relationship evolve as they also evolved. And I love that the serious mental health issues were acknowledged and addressed!!!

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