“At the Edge of Summer” by Jessica Brockmole is a novel set in 1911 France. It is the story of a fifteen year old girl, Clare Ross, a Scottish lass, who has been left alone since her mother left and her father died. A friend of her mother’s Madame Crepet has brought her to live with her family in the French countryside. Luc is the son of this family and is studying in Paris. He comes home on some weekends to try to make Clare not feel so lonely. Their friendship blossoms until Clare’s grandfather comes to take her with him on his academic travels to exotic lands. Clare and Luc keep in touch by letter until the Great War starts. Clare thinks he has forgotten her, but his letters to her have been lost as have hers to him.
Clare becomes an artist and starts working with a studio that makes facial prostheses for soldiers who have been injured in the war. One day, a young soldier comes to the studio for a consultation. Clare works with him and feels that she must know him. It is Luc, but his appearance has changed so drastically that she does not recognize him until later. What follows is a story of love and forgiveness.
I read another book by Ms. Brockmole, “Letters from Skye”. Her writing style seems to include letters that tell the story of the book. I found that in her writing, the characters are let much of themselves come forth in their letters. I did not see this same interaction between them when they met face to face. This way of telling her story is interesting because the reader feels that he is actually seeing what the letter writer is feeling.
I was sent a print copy of this book by NightOwlReviews.com in return for my honest review.