Book Review: Summer in Barefoot Bay by Roxanne St. Claire

About the Book:

Title: Summer in Barefoot Bay

Author: Roxanne St. Claire

Page Length: 832

Publication Date: April 26, 2022

Publisher: Forever

Synopsis: Fall in love with two feel-good beach romances from a renowned New York Times bestselling author—together for the first time in print!


Ever since her great-aunt Pasha rescued her from a troubled childhood, Zoe Tamarin doesn’t dare stay still for fear of exposing her precarious past. But when her aunt’s health is at risk, there’s only one person who can help—Zoe’s childhood sweetheart, Dr. Oliver Bradbury. Oliver came to Barefoot Bay to start over after his divorce, never expecting to reunite with the girl he once loved. But one look is all it takes to rekindle their passion. Can Oliver help Zoe heal lifelong wounds. . . and keep her from running away with his heart?


Professional gardener Tessa Galloway can grow anything—except what she wants most in the world. She’s finally ready to take a chance on single motherhood when a handsome new coworker enters her life . . . and her heart. Forced into the witness protection program, John Brown is desperate to reunite with his children. But first he has to prove he’s married and stable. Landing a job as a chef in Barefoot Bay is easy enough. And falling for Tessa is even easier. But will his secret be the thing that uproots their happy ending?

LINKS:   Goodreads   |    Amazon

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My Review:

Summer in Barefoot Bay includes books 3 and 4 in the Barefoot Bay series, Barefoot in the Sun and Barefoot by the Sea, and both stories are compelling and emotional romances filled with humor and heart. There’s a lot to love about the books – The setting is gorgeous, the love stories are swoon-worthy, and the friendships are amazing. I love this group of women, each so different yet united in their love for and support of each other. Lacey, Jocelyn, Zoe, and Tessa are friendship goals, and their relationship is one of the highlights of the series.

Barefoot in the Sun follows Zoe and Oliver and their second-chance romance. Their story was hinted at in previous books in the series, and I was so eager to learn more about what happened between them. Zoe is so funny and sarcastic and sometimes a bit flighty, but you quickly learn it’s a guise to protect some life-changing secrets. All of her walls come crumbling down when she reconnects with Oliver and faces her past.

The chemistry between Zoe and Oliver is palpable from the very beginning, and you can tell the love they have for each other has never gone away even though years have passed, but their road to happiness has many speed bumps. It’s interesting to see how they deal with complicated legal situations, family health problems, and, of course, their unrelenting feelings for each other. Zoe has spent her life running from everything – people, her feelings, mistakes she’s made, and more. She finds it a difficult cycle to break, and there’s a lot on the line if she reveals her past. Oliver is super swoon-worthy and so in love with Zoe.

The secondary characters, especially Zoe’s aunt and Oliver’s son, are also great. Oliver’s son Evan is comical. He’s smart and crass and precocious, and his relationship with Zoe’s aunt is very sweet. I also like that you get Pasha’s perspective and how she feels about everything that has happened in her and Zoe’s life.

Barefoot by the Sea follows the last woman of the four friends, Tessa, and her story is as moving as the others. Like Barefoot in the Sun, secrets are at the forefront of Tessa’s relationship with the enigmatic John, and Tess despises secrets even though she has one of her own. A man with a complicated past, John/Ian is desperate to reconnect with his kids but knows he needs more stability before he can. Marriage and a steady job are his main goals when he meets and falls for Tessa. Tessa wants to have a baby and is falling for John, but she starts to notice little things that suggest he’s not being entirely truthful.

Both of these characters are so layered and dynamic, and their chemistry is off the charts!! Tessa is so caring and nurturing, and her feelings about motherhood and her desire to carry a child have consumed her. John is equally interesting, though Tessa feels like he is too good to be true. Their story is emotional and sometimes heartbreaking as they work through their struggles and fears and slowly start to trust each other, but the way they feel about each other breaks through all the barriers in their way. If anyone deserves happiness, it’s these two, and I so rooted for them!

Barefoot Bay is a great series. They’re the kind of stories that make you laugh and cry and swoon and feel all of the feelings in between. I would definitely recommend it to readers who enjoy contemporary romance, and I’m very grateful to Forever Publishing for gifting me a copy of the book. All thoughts are my own.


Favorite Parts:

  • The romances.
  • The friendships.
  • The setting!

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