Book Review: Home Again by Mariah Stewart

20200816_194748

Summer is the perfect season for a light beach read, especially in the awful year of 2020. Needing a break from all the doom and gloom I borrowed Home Again by Mariah Stewart from my mother.

Dallas MacGregot seems to have it all. She’s an award-winning movie star married to a successful film producer named Emilio Baird and the mother of a delightful little boy named Cody.

But soon Dallas’s world comes apart when her husband is caught with two women in a scandalous sex tape. Dallas decides to divorce her scummy husband and escapes the tabloid scrutiny by returning to St. Dennis, Maryland where she spent her youth in the comfort of her family and close community.

Dallas is not alone in this time of upheaval. While in St. Dennis Dallas reunites with her fun-loving great aunt Beryl “Berry” Eberle. Berry was once a movie star herself during Hollywood’s golden age.

And there is also another resident of St. Dennis that has Dallas’s heart, local veterinarian Grant Wyler. Grant was Dallas’s first love. Is the spark still there after so many years apart? Maybe so.

Dallas finds solace and support in St. Dennis as she goes through her divorce and faces tabloid trash. She connects with other St. Dennis residents, even her rival for Grant’s affection. She fuels her creativity by working on an adapted screenplay of a popular book and getting the chance to make into a film.

And just as Dallas thrives in St. Dennis so does her son Cody. However, Dallas’s dastardly ex, Emilio arrives in St. Dennis. Is he going to cause havoc or try to make amends with Dallas and Cody? And what about Grant? Is he going to be a brief fling or a lasting love? Heck, even Aunt Berry might face a few changes in her life both professionally and in the department of romance.

Home Again kept my interest from the very first page. Though I felt that Dallas was written too good to be true and Emilio was too much of a cad,  I thoroughly enjoyed the story. Stewart writes in a very vivid and descriptive way that fills all five senses. I especially liked how the ice cream sold at the local shop Scoop was described. My mouth watered over the unique flavors.

And another interesting element of Home Again are the diary entries of Grace the editor of the local paper St. Dennis Gazette. These diary entries focus on Dallas and Berry’s lives. Hey, Grace is a journalist. She’s always interested in getting the “scoop” on St Dennis’s most famous residents.

And though Home Again was a bit predictable once it came to its closure, I found it a satisfying read as summer winds down.