Returning to Shore by Corinne Demas Book Review

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returning to shore book coverIn Returning to Shore, a girl reconnects with the father she barely knows on a picturesque beach setting.

Clare’s mom marries for the third time, leaving her behind while she honeymoons in France.  Clare’s mom arranges for Clare to spend some time getting to know her estranged father who now lives nearby on Cape Cod. Clare has lots of questions about the dad she hasn’t seen since she was three. Richard is quiet, but his passion for turtle conservation bonds the two over the summer.

I like quiet, slice of life books like this and thought Returning to Shore was lovely. And the Cape Cod summer setting is an especially welcome distraction from winter.

Clare has some complicated daddy issues. Previously, she only knew her biological dad from holiday cards and birthday phone calls. She was quite close with her stepfather but now that her mom remarried she’s uncertain about maintaining that relationship. She’s nicknamed her newest stepfather Tertio, though she keeps that fact to herself.

Clare’s dad, Richard, is a bit of a mystery for Clare to unravel. Slowly, she learns his reasons for keeping his distance, and it’s heartwarming to see their relationship strengthen over the course of the book.

Along with the father-daughter relationship, environmental issues are featured in Returning to Shore. Richard is very involved in conserving the Northern diamondback terrapin, and tracks and tags them and helps to protect their nests. Clare comes along on kayak rides and beach walks to learn the ropes and bond with her dad. The breakthrough between Clare and Richard is subtle but satisfying.

Clare meets some other teens on the island and let’s just say they lack Richard’s respect for their island surroundings. Richard has a reputation as the nutty old guy on the island for his environmental views, and that’s something else for Clare to digest.

Corinne Demas has a keen eye and develops the father-daughter relationship beautifully. The character voice is strong in this sweet and quiet novel.

 I received a review copy of Returning to Shore from the author via Netgalley/Carolrhoda Lab. There were no bribes of a Cape Cod vacation home, or pet turtles exchanged. Add a copy to your shelf on March 1: Amazon * B&N * IndieBound * Goodreads

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7 thoughts on “Returning to Shore by Corinne Demas Book Review

  1. BermudaOnion says:

    That sounds good to me. I imagine a lot of kids would connect with the story.

    1. Lucy says:

      Surprisingly I can’t think of too many books about this type of family situation, and yes I agree that many teens should relate to Clare’s story.

  2. bornbookish says:

    I also enjoy quiet slice of life books, not everything has to be high drama. The cover is beautiful and I’m interested in the Cape Cod setting. Sounds like a nice summer read.

    1. Lucy says:

      Agreed, bornbookish! I love settling in with a quiet book, and this would make a nice vacation read. Check back on Monday for an author q&a and a giveaway if you’re interested.

  3. That cover is SO amazing and stark, I just love it! I have really great luck with Carolrhoda Lab books, and while the premise isn’t something I’d automatically be drawn to, this publisher’s involvement and your positive review guarantees that I’ll pick it up sometime.

    Wendy @ The Midnight Garden

    1. Lucy says:

      It is a lovely cover, isn’t it? I’m such a big fan of Carolrhoda Lab books too- they are good at pushing the envelope and offering unique stories. I do hope you pick it up sometime, Wendy! I’d love to hear what you think of it.

  4. […] I recently read Returning to Shore by Corinne Demas, and I’m happy to welcome her here today to discuss some background on the book. Corinne Demas is the author of YA books Everything I Was and her latest Returning to Shore, a story about family relationships, secrets, love, and the environment. I read the book last week and found it really lovely. The setting and the voice are very strong, and I loved the relationship between Clare and her father. (Read my review here) […]

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