Driftwood Summer and Summer Shift were two books I bought from Barron’s summer reading table–summer, you see the theme? There’s just something about hot afternoons and sunshine glare that make me want to find a cool fan and stretch out on the hammock with a breezy book. These two definitely fit the bill—just look at their titles. Driftwood Summer was a delightful read, as charming as a tide rolling in and out. Very authentic and gripping via its family dramas. I did wish for more romance though, Patti Callahan Henry had set things up nicely. But those relationship were implied for later. The here and now was all about rebuilding sister’s fractured relationships. Summer Shift was a little harder for me to get into. It also took place in a shoreside community, a busy restaurant scene and a catastrophe that brings people together—its just that these people didn’t seem to have as much hope as the characters in the Georgia book. I guess that’s what draws me to characters–do they have a sense of hope? I can ride with them along torturous journeys, if they seem to have an ounce of hope in satisfying resolution–but character without hope? I guess I don’t see a reason to keep on reading. You decide which book touches you, but for me I’ll keep on reading.