Author: Mary McNear

Book Review | A reader happily returns to #ButternutLake in “Moonlight on Butternut Lake” by Mary McNear the 3rd novel in an expanding series with upcoming new installments in 2016/17!

Posted Wednesday, 26 August, 2015 by jorielov , , , , , , 0 Comments

Ruminations & Impressions Book Review Banner created by Jorie in Canva. Photo Credit: Unsplash Public Domain Photographer Sergey Zolkin.

Acquired Book By:

Curious story: I participated on the “Butternut Summer” virtual book tour through TLC Book Tours in 2014; wherein I was able to request reading “Up at Butternut Lake” which I received outside of the blog tour and posted my ruminations for my own edification and a review of “Butternut Summer” as part of the blog tour itself. When “Moonlight on Butternut Summer” went on tour this Spring with TLC Book Tours I missed jumping on board the blog tour by mere days, and took it upon myself to contact William Morrow directly.

Unlike other book bloggers, I tend to rely on the touring companies to bring authors and their stories to me rather than contacting publishers directly for books in exchange for honest reviews. I have become a bit more bold in requesting books directly from publishers over the past year, as I have several reviews upcoming this September where I made the enquiry myself rather than as a blogger with a touring company. When it came to the next installment of Butternut Lake, I felt it in my bones it was the right choice to extend a note to William Morrow because I have believed in this series since I first read “Up at Butternut Lake”.

Due to health reasons and severe lightning storms, the past several months have been a bit unique and my blog’s schedule has been adjusted to where most of my reviews for Spring and Summer are shifting into September or Autumn directly. During these months, as I sought to re-schedule this review, JKS Communications approached me about reviewing or interviewing the author attached to “Moonlight on Butternut Lake” which I took as a positive sign I had an extended delay! Therefore, not only can I post my review but I was able to coordinate an author Q&A about the Butternut Lake series!

I received a complimentary copy of “Moonlight on Butternut Lake” direct from the publisher William Morrow in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein. I received the Press Kit Materials direct from JKS Communications to use on my review and the interview which posts in conjunction with it.

Inspired to Read: 

I originally posted this explanation on my review of “Butternut Summer” and it still is a good summary of why I fell in love with the series as a whole and why I was itching to read the then unknown title of this novel which is it’s third installment. I can add that I was hoping against hope Butternut Lake might find wings to expand past the original trilogy – especially as I hadn’t known about the novella Butternut Lake: The Night Before Christmas. I found the novella has been released in print and it is a current request through my local library’s ILL (inter-library loan) services.

On my review for Up at Butternut Lake, I discussed my general interest in reading a Contemporary Romance novel, but tonight what I wanted to share about my inspiration to read Butternut Summer is simply motivated by being stirred with such an evoking of narrative as to tempt me to devour the sequel without pausing for breath! The characters inside Up at Butternut Lake are incredibly inspiring due to the spirit of who they are individually and as a community at large. These are the types of stories that I cherish discovering as they not only encourage your spirit and heart as you read them, but they enliven your hours with such a beautiful expanse of fiction that your bubbling over in pure joy for having read them! I could not wait to dive into Butternut Summer, and it was a bit grieving to realise there would be a long wait until the conclusion of the trilogy; except to say, the small excerpt in the Appendix of this P.S. Edition truly helped provide a salve!

Book Review | A reader happily returns to #ButternutLake in “Moonlight on Butternut Lake” by Mary McNear the 3rd novel in an expanding series with upcoming new installments in 2016/17!Moonlight on Butternut Lake
by Mary McNear
Source: Direct from Publisher

Mila Jones, a young woman fleeing a dark past, has accepted a job on Butternut Lake taking care of Reid Ford, who is recovering from a car accident that nearly killed him. This is Mila’s chance for a fresh start. But Reid, brooding and embittered, does everything he can to make her quit. Mila refuses to give up.

Against all odds, Mila slowly draws Reid out. Soon they form a tentative, yet increasingly deeper, bond with each other, as well as becoming part of the day-to-day fabric of Butternut Lake itself. But the world has a way of intruding, even in such a serene place…and when Mila’s violent ex-husband becomes determined to find her, she and Reid are forced to face down the past.

Perfect for lovers of Susan Wiggs, Debbie Maccomber, and Kristin Hannah, Moonlight on Butternut Lake is a novel of courage, romance, and resilience that is to be savored and shared.

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to Riffle

Also by this author: Up at Butternut Lake, Butternut Summer, Interview with Mary McNear

Series: Butternut Lake, Butternut Lake Trilogy


Also in this series: Up at Butternut Lake, Butternut Summer


Genres: Contemporary (Modern) Fiction (post 1945)


Published by William Morrow

on 12th May 2015

Format: P.S. Edition Paperback

Pages: 384

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

The Butternut Lake Trilogy turns into a Series:

Up At Butternut Lake, No.1 (synopsis)

Butternut Summer, No.2 (synopsis)

Butternut Lake: The Night Before Christmas, Novella (synopsis)

Moonlight on Butternut Lake *this review!*

Book No.4 *releases 2016* | Book No.5 *releases 2017*

Jorie Loves A Story Cuppa Book Love Awards Badge created by Jorie in Canva. Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo. Read More

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Posted Wednesday, 26 August, 2015 by jorielov in Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Book | Novel Excerpt, CNAs and Home Health Aides, Contemporary Romance, Dating & Humour Therein, Disabilities & Medical Afflictions, Domestic Violence, Family Drama, Family Life, Fathers and Daughters, Flashbacks & Recollective Memories, JKS Communications: Literary Publicity Firm, Jorie Loves A Story Cuppa Book Love Awards, Life Shift, Medical Fiction, Minnesota, Modern Day, Realistic Fiction, Romance Fiction, Second Chance Love, Singletons & Commitment, Small Towne Fiction, Small Towne USA, Trauma | Abuse & Recovery, Writing Style & Voice

+Blog Book Tour+ Butternut Summer by Mary McNear

Posted Tuesday, 14 October, 2014 by jorielov , , , , , , 1 Comment

Parajunkee Designs

Butternut Summer by Mary McNear

Published By: William Morrow (@WmMorrowBks),
an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers (@HarperCollins)

Official Author Websites@marymcnear | Facebook
Available Formats: Paperback, Audiobook, Ebook

Converse via: #ButternutLakeSeries, #ButternutLake, & #ButternutSummer

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Acquired Book By:

I was selected to be a tour stop on the “Butternut Summer” virtual book tour through TLC Book Tours. Realising this was a second novel within a series, I requested a copy of the first novel “Up at Butternut Lake” in order to understand the continuity of the characters & the story. I received a complimentary copy of the novel direct from the publisher William Morrow without an obligation to post a review. Whereas I received a complimentary copy of “Butternut Summer” direct from the publisher William Morrow, in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Inspired to Read: 

On my review for Up at Butternut Lake, I discussed my general interest in reading a Contemporary Romance novel, but tonight what I wanted to share about my inspiration to read Butternut Summer is simply motivated by being stirred with such an evoking of narrative as to tempt me to devour the sequel without pausing for breath! The characters inside Up at Butternut Lake are incredibly inspiring due to the spirit of who they are individually and as a community at large. These are the types of stories that I cherish discovering as they not only encourage your spirit and heart as you read them, but they enliven your hours with such a beautiful expanse of fiction that your bubbling over in pure joy for having read them! I could not wait to dive into Butternut Summer, and it was a bit grieving to realise there would be a long wait until the conclusion of the trilogy; except to say, the small excerpt in the Appendix of this P.S. Edition truly helped provide a salve!

+Blog Book Tour+ Butternut Summer by Mary McNearButternut Summer
by Mary McNear
Source: Publisher via TLC Book Tours

Caroline’s life is turned upside down the moment her ex-husband, Jack, strides through the door of her coffee shop. He seems changed—stronger, steadier, and determined to make amends with Caroline and their daughter, Daisy. Is he really different, or is he the same irresistibly charming but irresponsible man he was when he left Butternut Lake eighteen years ago? Caroline, whose life is stuck on pause as her finances are going down the tubes, is tempted to let him back into her life . . . but would it be wise?

For Caroline’s daughter, Daisy, the summer is filled with surprises. Home from college, she’s reunited with the father she adores—but hardly knows—and swept away by her first true love. But Will isn’t what her mother wants for her—all Caroline can see is that he’s the kind of sexy “bad boy” Daisy should stay away from.

As the long, lazy days of summer pass, Daisy and Caroline come to realize that even if Butternut Lake doesn’t change, life does. . . .

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to Riffle

Also by this author: Up at Butternut Lake, Interview with Mary McNear, Moonlight on Butternut Lake

Series: Butternut Lake, Butternut Lake Trilogy,


Also in this series: Up at Butternut Lake, Moonlight on Butternut Lake


Genres: Contemporary (Modern) Fiction (post 1945)


Published by William Morrow

on 12th August, 2014

Format: P.S. Edition Paperback

Pages: 400

Author Biography:

Mary McNear
Photo Credit: Amelia Kennedy

Mary McNear lives in San Francisco with her husband, two teenage children, and a high-strung, minuscule white dog named Macaroon. She writes her novels in a local doughnut shop, where she sips Diet Pepsi, observes the hubbub of neighborhood life, and tries to resist the constant temptation of freshly made doughnuts. She bases her novels on a lifetime of summers spent in a small town on a lake in the northern Midwest.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Read an Excerpt of the Novel:

Butternut Summer Excerpt by WilliamMorrowBooks

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Up at Butternut Lake by Mary McNearPrecursor to Butternut Summer: Up at Butternut Lake: {Book One}

You want to stay soaked inside a McNear novel due to it’s uplifting ease of story-telling and the gentle spirit of guidance the author stitches into her story-line. You are comforted by the unease the characters are feeling vexed over due to the gentleness McNear uses as a guiding compass through their walk of tribulation. One of the best blessings for me overall is how she used her creative words and expressions to voice the thought provoking narrative to be a clean read and an enjoyable read altogether. She pierced the novel with bone chilling emotional arcs and relationships grounded in realistic encounters and plausible circumstances of any modern couple today could face. The story of Butternut Lake is more expansive than this one novel alone, as she has wrought such a hearty community of characters that you feel akin to each of them in different ways. There are of course the regular muck of a rake or rat as well, but even with the bit of darkness ebbing out of the light, McNear is a natural story-teller in giving you a strong read worthy of your emotional heart being pulled through the novel she’s put in your hands.

– quoted from my book review of Up at Butternut Lake

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Posted Tuesday, 14 October, 2014 by jorielov in Based on an Actual Event &/or Court Case, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Book | Novel Excerpt, Contemporary Romance, Dating & Humour Therein, Family Drama, Family Life, Fathers and Daughters, Flashbacks & Recollective Memories, Minnesota, Modern Day, Romance Fiction, Scribd, Singletons & Commitment, Small Towne Fiction, Small Towne USA, TLC Book Tours, Writing Style & Voice

+Book Review+ Up at Butternut Lake by Mary McNear #Contemporary story grounded in #realistic fiction.

Posted Tuesday, 14 October, 2014 by jorielov , , , , , 1 Comment

Parajunkee Designs

Up at Butternut Lake by Mary McNear

Published By: William Morrow (@WmMorrowBks),
an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers (@HarperCollins)

Official Author Websites@marymcnear | Facebook
Available Formats: Paperback, Audiobook, Ebook

Converse via: #ButternutLakeSeries & #UpAtButternutLake

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Acquired Book By:

I was selected to be a tour stop on the “Butternut Summer” virtual book tour through TLC Book Tours. Realising this was a second novel within a series, I requested a copy of the first novel “Up at Butternut Lake” in order to understand the continuity of the characters & the story. I received a complimentary copy of the novel direct from the publisher William Morrow without an obligation to post a review. Whereas I received a complimentary copy of “Butternut Summer” direct from the publisher William Morrow, in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Inspired to Read:

Stories of second chances have always held fast to my heart, as life has this beautiful way of giving us a bit more than we’re expecting it to yield most of the time. The idea that there are ways to have a renewal of our lives through a second chance or a new beginning elsewhere from whence we are currently has a very alluring appeal! I have been an appreciator of Contemporary Romance & Contemporary Women’s Fiction for a good 20 years now, as I snuggled into a fierce appreciation for Debbie MacComber originally when I first started noticing both of these genres. Sherryl Woods followed 15 years later when I discovered the small towne of Serenity, and the series the Sweet Magnolias (although I personally refer to that series as ‘Serenity’). MacComber’s Angel series drew me into her narrative arcs, followed closely by the Cedar Cove series and Blossom Street; as I appreciated her style of story and the homespun sincerity of her characters. Being that both MacComber & Woods are going to have series based off their novels on the Hallmark Channel within the next year or so, humbles me a bit as I have this history of discovering both authors ahead of their newfound popularity. I even knew Debbie MacComber’s works would find a home on Hallmark Channel, but that’s a story for another time, perhaps!

I had started to curate a List on Riffle entitled: Contemporary Romances : Returning back to the Modern Era as I wanted to walk back into an area of literature I have started to negate reading. When I first had the opportunity to have a library card after a considerable absence, my checkout queue looked quite hyperactively complied! I simply couldn’t wait to grab this or that novel, and try this or that author! I started so many wicked awesome series by new-to-me authors, I have a list a mile long of ‘next reads’ to continue the happiness I had begun five years ago! Then, I started to shift my wanderings a bit, exploring new genres and/or committing to new styles of the craft of storytelling itself. My wanderings are always a bit decidedly serendipitous in their nature, but as much as I have a niche for being addicted to the historical past, I am equally entranced by the modern era!

I may or may not have highlighted my joy of giving back to deployed servicemen & women as much as I have a deep appreciation for the sacrifices and hard work they give whilst they dedicate their lives to others. Military fiction was a branch of literature I was attracted too as a young teen, and likewise, my passion for watching JAG, NCIS, NCIS: LA, & NCIS: NOLA originated out of my love of Jack Ryan stories (by Tom Clancy). Hallmark Channel has a lovely Romance with Lori Loughlin entitled: Meet My Mom of which I loved for bringing a realistic story to their offerings and shining a positive  light on today’s military families.

As soon as I read the book synopsis, I was hooked. I couldn’t wait to read both of these novels, whilst being wicked happy the third novel: Moonlight on Butterlake releases in 2015!

+Book Review+ Up at Butternut Lake by Mary McNear #Contemporary story grounded in #realistic fiction.Up at Butternut Lake
by Mary McNear
Source: Publisher via TLC Book Tours

In the tradition of Kristin Hannah and Susan Wiggs, Mary McNear introduces readers to the town of Butternut Lake and to the unforgettable people who call it home.

It’s summer, and after ten years away, Allie Beckett has returned to her family’s cabin beside tranquil Butternut Lake, where as a teenager she spent so many carefree days. She’s promised her five-year-old son, Wyatt, they will be happy there. She’s promised herself this is the place to begin again after her husband’s death in Afghanistan. The cabin holds so many wonderful memories, but from the moment she crosses its threshold Allie is seized with doubts. Has she done the right thing uprooting her little boy from the only home he’s ever known?

Allie and her son are embraced by the townsfolk, and her reunions with old acquaintances—her friend Jax, now a young mother of three with one more on the way, and Caroline, the owner of the local coffee shop—are joyous ones. And then there are newcomers like Walker Ford, who mostly keeps to himself—until he takes a shine to Wyatt . . . and to Allie.

Everyone knows that moving forward is never easy, and as the long, lazy days of summer take hold, Allie must learn to unlock the hidden longings of her heart, and to accept that in order to face the future she must also confront—and understand—what has come before.

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to Riffle

Also by this author: Butternut Summer, Interview with Mary McNear, Moonlight on Butternut Lake

Series: Butternut Lake, Butternut Lake Trilogy


Also in this series: Butternut Summer, Moonlight on Butternut Lake


Genres: Contemporary (Modern) Fiction (post 1945)


Published by William Morrow

on 8th April, 2014

Format: P.S. Edition Paperback

Pages: 400

Author Biography:

Mary McNear
Photo Credit: Amelia Kennedy

Mary McNear lives in San Francisco with her husband, two teenage children, and a high-strung, minuscule white dog named Macaroon. She writes her novels in a local doughnut shop, where she sips Diet Pepsi, observes the hubbub of neighborhood life, and tries to resist the constant temptation of freshly made doughnuts. She bases her novels on a lifetime of summers spent in a small town on a lake in the northern Midwest.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Picking up the pieces : from loss & tribulations:

One of the hardest obstacles about living our lives forward without the benefit of understanding the events that will take place in the future, is being able to dig deep into our wells of strength and fortitude to accept the hope that our lives will start to turn back around. The thematics which are strongly represented in Up at Butternut Lake are an evolving exploration of Change (questions of destiny, permanence, and stability – of not only the mind, heart, and spirit but the physical locale of where your life will be lived); where each character who takes a central focus is at a turning point in their lives. Where they can choose to move forward and let go of the past that is weighing them down, or they can continue as they are without moving forward at all.

The complacencies of life arise out of the complexities of a cobweb’s worth of lies, spun innocently enough at the time they are created but woven into the texture of your life can become a haunting self-reminder of how untruthful of a life you’re actually living. Within the thematics of the story, this kernel of truth is an underscore that affects different characters in different ways, as the lies we tell ourselves to recover from something we feel we cannot face head-on are just as damaging as the lies which remain unspoken or proven untrue through the wrinkles of time itself.

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Posted Tuesday, 14 October, 2014 by jorielov in Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Book | Novel Excerpt, Book Review (non-blog tour), Child out of Wedlock, Contemporary Romance, Death, Sorrow, and Loss, Debut Author, Debut Novel, Family Life, Flashbacks & Recollective Memories, Grief & Anguish of Guilt, Life Shift, Military Families of the Deployed, Military Fiction, Minnesota, Modern Day, Mother-Son Relationships, Realistic Fiction, Romance Fiction, Scribd, Single Mothers, Singletons & Commitment, Sisterhood friendships, Small Towne Fiction, TLC Book Tours, War Widow, Widows & Widowers

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