Local Book Reviews
Reviewing Midwest Authors
Author: Kate Laack
With our slide into August you may feel like we are in the homestretch of our carefree summer days. But, maybe you are wanting to find just one more perfect read. In the Shade of Olive Trees captures the power of the friendship of women, lifelong love, and the details of travel throughout the beautiful country of Italy.
The novel starts off with Julia Brooks, who has been jilted at the altar. Julia decides that she's not going to let her ex-fiancé Will take away her perfect honeymoon as well. So she decides to go alone, but she quickly realizes all the romantic getaways and restaurants that she and her ex-finance had planned to visit only stand to remind her of all that she lost.
Then she meets a woman named Harriet, who runs Olive Haven Women's retreat, a center for widows. Through happenstance, Julia finds herself staying with this unlikely group of women. Most of the women, who surprisingly are in all different walks of life, embrace her into their fold and their stories of love, loss, and heartbreak make Julia question everything she'd previously thought was love.
For me, the highlights of the novel were the strength of story and the healing power of friendship. The heaviness of the topic of grief and loss is balanced by the fun and laughter that come from women vacationing together.
Kate Laack, is a Minnesota author, high school English teacher, and this is her debut novel. The book can be found in the local library, Barnes & Noble, and here on Amazon.