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Summer of Two Wishes
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Summer of Two Wishes

4.2 40
by Julia London, Natalie Ross (Read by)

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Macy Lockhart’s life shattered in a moment with the news that her husband, Finn — serving in the military overseas — has been killed in the line of duty. Their ardent and devoted marriage is over, leaving Macy alone, empty, directionless. But while she tries to sustain herself with memories of Finn, the quiet, strong man who made her and their small


Macy Lockhart’s life shattered in a moment with the news that her husband, Finn — serving in the military overseas — has been killed in the line of duty. Their ardent and devoted marriage is over, leaving Macy alone, empty, directionless. But while she tries to sustain herself with memories of Finn, the quiet, strong man who made her and their small Texas ranch the center of his life, it is wealthy Wyatt Clark who slowly brings joy back into her life. Her love for Wyatt may be less romantic than the breathless passion she’d once shared with Finn, but she vows to cherish him, and their marriage is happy and as solid as a rock. Until the day that Finn, miraculously spared from death, returns home to claim his bride. . . .
How can a woman choose between the two men she loves? And how will she make the right choice - for herself and everyone involved? In a deeply moving, passionate novel, New York Times bestselling author Julia London illuminates the questions hidden in a woman’s heart.

“Superbly crafted characters, graceful writing, and sinfully sexy romance.” — Booklist

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Bestseller London (The Book of Scandal) puts her historical romances aside to pen a contemporary heartbreaker inspired by post-9/11 patriotism. Macy and Finn Lockhart work hard and love deeply on their horse ranch in Texas until Finn joins the army and is killed by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan. Three years later, Macy has glued herself together enough to put the ranch up for sale and marry land broker Wyatt Clark. Then comes the paralyzing news that Finn is alive and coming home. Macy suddenly has two husbands and must decide where her future lies. Difficult choices lead to bad behavior all around, and while London knows how to keep pages turning, the lack of sympathetic characters may leave readers struggling more with their personal feelings about war and grief than with the tension of the story. (Sept.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
From the Publisher
"Superbly crafted characters, graceful writing, and sinfully sexy romance." — Booklist

"London's characters come alive on every page and will steal your heart." — Atlanta Journal-Constitution

"A contemporary heartbreaker....London knows how to keep pages turning." — Publishers Weekly

Product Details

Brilliance Audio
Publication date:
Edition description:
Unabridged, 9 CDs, 11 hrs. 6 min.
Product dimensions:
6.50(w) x 5.40(h) x 1.10(d)

Read an Excerpt


The first time two U.S. Army Casualty Notification Officers came looking for Macy, it was to tell her that her husband Finn had died in Afghanistan.

Suicide bomber, the taller officer said. Nothing left but a half-burned dog tag.

Macy didn't remember much after that, except that she had been getting groceries out of the car when they'd arrived, and the taller officer's eyes were the exact shade of the head of iceberg lettuce that had rolled away when she'd dropped the bag.

Three years later, when the third Casualty Notification Officer came to see Macy, she would remember Finn's black lab, Milo, racing in between the tables they'd set up on the lawn, pausing to shake the river water from his coat and spraying the pristine white linen tablecloths. She'd remember thinking, Don't panic, don't panic, over and over again as she stared at those dirty brown spots on the tablecloths.

Everything else would be a blur.

The officer found Macy at her Aunt Laru's limestone ranch house just outside of Cedar Springs, in the Texas Hill Country west of Austin. It was a beautiful spread, forty acres of rolling hills covered in live oaks, cedar, and blooming cactus on the banks of the Pedernales River.

Laru Friedenberg had married and divorced three times before the age of forty-five. The marriages had left her a little bit jaded and a little bit wealthy, and when Laru had learned Macy was hosting a luncheon, she'd insisted that Macy host it at her house. The luncheon was a fundraiser to benefit a nonprofit organization, Project Lifeline. Macy and a friend had founded the charity to help families of soldiers who'd been wounded or killed with financial aid or services. The organization was a success thus far, and Laru was eager to help.

"I didn't put up with Randy King for six years to sit and look at this view by myself," Laru had said with a flip of her strawberry-blonde hair over her shoulder. "Have the luncheon here, Macy. A pretty setting and plenty of liquor will open up those wallets faster than the devil in a white suit."

As it was June and not yet miserably hot, Macy had decided to have it on the grassy riverbank and had set up three large round tables beneath the twisted limbs of the live oaks. She'd dressed the tables in linen, littered them with rose petals and rose centerpieces, and set them with fine china from Laru's second marriage. She'd enlisted Laru to make batches of her signature white and red sangria, and had food catered from Twin Sisters, which specialized in "discriminating palates."

"If by discriminating they refer to gals who won't pass over a single morsel that isn't nailed down, then I think we've got the right caterer," Laru had quipped.

The day was overcast and a slight breeze was coming up off the river. An hour before the guests were due to arrive, Laru insisted on tightening the halter of the pink sundress Macy had found on sale for the occasion. "You look so cute!" she said at last, her hands on her waist. "Very hostessy. Has Wyatt seen you in that?"

"Not yet," Macy said as she donned the pearl earrings and necklace he'd given her. He was always giving her gifts: Pearls. An iPhone. A boat.

"Best make sure he doesn't see you until after the luncheon. He's likely to tear it right off your body."

"Laru!" Macy said with a laugh.

"What?" Laru asked innocently. "It's no secret that every time that man looks at you his eyes get as shiny as new pennies."

"Well, he's not invited. It's ladies only. Rich ladies, and as we both know, that's not his type," Macy said, pointing at herself and making Laru laugh. "Besides, he's in San Antonio for a couple of days."

Satisfied with her appearance, Macy walked outside to check on everything once more. Ernesto, Laru's handyman, was out front, sweeping the flagstone porch. "If you see a bunch of women in fancy hats, send them on around, will you?" she asked, indicating the walkway around the side of the house. "Gracias!"

Macy followed the path around the corner of the house. Laru was right — the setting was truly lovely, and her tables looked perfect. But as Macy stood there admiring her work, Milo shot past. "Hey," Macy muttered. Milo was not the sort of dog to run. Generally, he was much happier lying in the shade. But when he emerged from between the tables, she saw that he had a grungy rope toy in his mouth. Out from beneath another table shot a beagle in hot pursuit. "Hey!" Macy shouted as Milo headed for the river. "Milo, no!" she cried. But Milo dove heedlessly into the river, paddled around, then climbed up on the bank, taunted the beagle with his toy, and dashed up to the tables, where he paused to shake the water off his coat. "No!" Macy cried again.

The beagle barked, and Milo was off again.

"Macy Clark?"

Startled by the sound of a male voice, Macy whirled around and came face-to-face with an army officer in full dress uniform. Her heart skipped a beat. What was he doing here? Finn was dead. Dead for three long, miserable years. Three years in which Macy woke up every morning to face the heartache of his absence all over again, missing her sun and moon, realizing that it wasn't a bad dream, that he wasn't going to come through the door with his tanned arms and his straw hat pulled low over his eyes, grinning like he wanted her with syrup for breakfast.

"Beg your pardon, ma'am — I am Lieutenant Colonel Dan Freeman with the United States Army," he said. The bags under his eyes made him look like a sad old hound dog. "I need to speak with you, please."

"Me?" she asked as Milo and the beagle dashed in between them. "Is it the fund-raiser?" she said, thinking wildly that perhaps the army didn't approve. "It's the fund-raiser, isn't it?"

"The fund-raiser?"

"Project Lifeline," she said. "My friend Samantha and I — we wanted to help the families of fallen soldiers because they really need more than just the death gratuity. Not that the gratuity isn't generous. It is! But there is all this...this emotional stuff that money can't fix. So we started Project Lifeline. That's okay, isn't it? Surely that's okay."

What was she saying? She didn't need the army's permission! Macy was rambling, which wasn't like her at all, but there was something about the officer's demeanor, his blank look, that made her anxious. "You've never heard of us, have you?"

He shook his head. "No, ma'am."

Macy swallowed down a very bad feeling.

A barking dog and the sound of a car's wheels crunching on the gravel drive in front filtered into her consciousness. Someone shouted, "Bad dog!"

"What is it?" Macy asked softly. "What has happened?"

"Would you like to sit down?" he asked.

Now Macy's belly swooned. "Sir...I am about to host a fund-raiser."

"It can't wait, ma'am," he said, and smiled. "Maybe we can sit at one of those tables."

"How did you find me?" she asked, ignoring his gesture toward her tables.

"Your neighbor told me you were here and was kind enough to give me directions."

"Okay," she said resolutely, despite the rubbery feeling in her legs. "Okay, Lieutenant Colonel Freeman, you can't tell me anything worse than what the army has already told me, right? So please, whatever it is, just say it."

"Yes, ma'am," Lieutenant Colonel Freeman said. Hekept his hound-dog eyes steady on her as he reached into his coat pocket, took out an envelope, and held it out to her.

Her heart pounding, Macy stared at it. She didn't want to touch that envelope. It was impossible that it could contain anything that had to do with her — Finn is dead! He's dead, he's dead! The officer shifted slightly, moving the envelope closer to her, and Macy reluctantly took it. Her hands were shaking so badly she could hardly open it; the envelope fluttered to the ground as she unfolded the letter.

"Ma'am, if I may," the officer said. "The secretary of defense regrets to inform you that we have made a gross error in concluding Sergeant Finn Lockhart was killed in action because he has indeed been found alive. On June eighteen, at oh two hundred hours..."

Macy never heard the rest of what he said. She couldn't breathe, she couldn't speak, and everything began to swirl around her. The last thing Macy saw was Lt. Colonel Dan Freeman lurching forward to catch her as she melted.

Copyright © 2009 by Dinah Dinwiddie

Meet the Author

Julia London
is the New York Times bestselling author of The Book of Scandal, The Perils of Pursuing a Prince, The Hazards of Hunting a Duke, Highlander Unbound, Highlander in Disguise, Highlander in Love, and eight other romantic novels, including the popular Rogues of Regent Street trilogy. She lives in Round Rock, Texas.

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Summer of Two Wishes 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 40 reviews.
West_Texan More than 1 year ago
What a story! I was totally engaged from the first page on. When I finished the book I was satisfied but I can't wait for the next book in the series to come out for more. Julia has a way of wrapping me into the characters she has created. I can visualize the settings and I almost felt as if I were there. I will be one of the first to purchase her next book.
Debtheromantic More than 1 year ago
The previous reviews have summarized the plot so I won't repeat. I will just say that I, too, could not put the book down. However, the end left me rather disappointed. Not because of Macy's choice. But because it all seemed a little too tidy. Everyone's behavior became a little too good-to-be-true and all the messiness -- Finn's PTSD, Macy's complications, Sam's issue, Wyatt's handling of the land issues -- all turned out to be not much more than fleeting problems. Too bad because the plot was original and had all the makings of a good movie script. But the ending was just too lame.
JaneMyersPerrine More than 1 year ago
Julia London left Regency England and flew her time machine straight to the present in Cedar Springs, TX. With her, Ms. London brought her New-York-Times-best-seller-list writing skills. She needed every one of them because this must have been a tough book to write. She succeeds, of course, but only the most talented of writers-like Julia London-would be able to pull together this weaving of stories and emotions. For almost everyone in town, the homecoming of Finn Lockhart, previously reported as dead but now found after three years in captivity, is a cause for celebration. But not for Wyatt Clark who is now married to Finn's wife Macy. And, while Macy is overjoyed the love of her life is safe, how does she treat Wyatt, the man who pulled her from the deep depression after Finn's reported death and to whom she owes her sanity? How can a woman make a decision like that? Although Finn's return is joyful, it brings with it problems and repercussions for many citizens of Cedar Springs. How does the town handle the return of a war hero? How does the man who doesn't consider himself a hero take the adulation and interest his return brings with it? From the tangled motives and feelings, Ms. London creates a marvelous story of love and deceit, hope and redemption. She deals honestly with the deep emotions of Finn's family and friends. Perhaps the most poignant is Finn's story. This is a man who returns home to find all those things he dreamed about, that kept him going during his captivity, are gone: his wife, his land, his career, even his horses and dog. How does he deal with the trauma of those three years and his losses when his privacy is constantly invaded? Macy and Finn face incredibly difficult choices. Through Ms. London's deft writing and great talent, we feel the pain of the characters and cheer for them to have their two wishes-and many more-granted. This book is highly recommended, a real keeper and the start of a new chapter of Ms. London's exceptional career. Jane Myers Perrine
ajenkins979 11 months ago
Wow! This book was an emotional rollercoaster (for the characters). So many ups and downs, and hard decisions to make. I have no clue how I would have handled Macy's situation, that is one tough call. I loved Macy & Finn, I didn't care for Wyatt at all (not even any where in the book). Wyatt was a total jerk, yes I understand it was a rough time. But he was never understanding or "there" for Macy. But he claimed to care for her so much, he had no sympathy for her. Macy & Finn, had true love. A love that last, that makes you still want each other no matter what. Macy & Wyatt had what I call a material love. He was there for her (years ago) when she was down. Then to keep her by his side, he would buy her gifts. In my opinion to make her forget Finn and love him. That is not a lasting relationship. I had a hard time putting this book down, I was very captured by the story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love Julia London's book and this does not disappoint! Easy reading.
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Very well written, no long boring unneccessay dialogs. Enjoyed the book club review questions and suggestions at the end. Will follow this author.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was thorughly sick of the wife by the end.
Rhodes123 More than 1 year ago
Contemporary Romance, Military, Dog, Family, Small Town... A Heart-wrenching, emotional book. Exceptionally written with great characters and a intriguing plot.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved this book!!  This is one I go back and read over and over
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good story moves well...sweet!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved it...kept me entertained and excited to turn the page.
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Lori Kosmicki More than 1 year ago
A good read but the sex scenes were too graphic. The story line didn't need the details like in grphic romance novels. I would have ranked her in a class like nicholas sparks if it were't for the sexual content.
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