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Find Me in California


Find Me in California

Kerry Lonsdale’s FIND ME IN CALIFORNIA brims with star-crossed lovers, poor decisions, loss, abandonment and numerous secrets. Julia Hope and Matt Gatlin had vastly different experiences growing up with their grandmothers. Julia was loved and pampered by hers after her mother abandoned her, while Matt was ignored and isolated by his after the death of his parents, who loved him deeply.

As circumstances cause their paths to cross, Julia and Matt feel a connection. While their stories and backgrounds differ, they find that there is much that connects them. And thanks to a diary that Julia finds, we are privy to events that provide details of just how their pasts are intertwined.

"[D]espite the heartbreaking losses that these characters suffer, the theme that emerges is uplifting and hopeful."

Lonsdale cleverly presents one grandmother as "good" and the other as "evil." But as we come to find out, generalizations and first impressions can be misleading. Long-held secrets can greatly damage families and relationships; even those held with the best of intentions are harmful. And Lonsdale doesn't stop there. Julia and Matt suffer from what appears to be an attachment disorder. They believed that they were abandoned by their mothers and have felt the sting of that loss ever since. Both fear falling in love because of the real possibility that it might not last, resulting in yet another abandonment.

Between the present-day chapters, which are clearly labeled as being from either Julia or Matt's point of view, and the diary entries from the ’70s, we are able to piece together bits from the past and present to gain a complete picture of how their families crossed paths with tragic results. There's a bit of mystery as well, as Matt spends a weekend with an ethereal creature who might be real, a figure from the past or even a figment of his imagination.

Yet, despite the heartbreaking losses that these characters suffer, the theme that emerges is uplifting and hopeful. This touching novel is about opening up to love and facing not just the past but the future with an open mind and heart. It's about forgiveness and letting go of past grievances, but it's also about finding connections and making the most of missed opportunities.

Reviewed by Pamela Kramer on June 15, 2024

Find Me in California
by Kerry Lonsdale

  • Publication Date: June 11, 2024
  • Genres: Fiction, Women's Fiction
  • Paperback: 331 pages
  • Publisher: Lake Union Publishing
  • ISBN-10: 1662514824
  • ISBN-13: 9781662514821