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One Summer

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3.97  ·  Rating details ·  5,317 ratings  ·  194 reviews
High school teacher Rachel Grant believed in her student Johnny Harris's innocence even after he was convicted of murdering his girlfriend. Now, 10 years later, he's out on parole and Rachel has taken him under her wing, even finding a job for him. It isn't long before their relationship changes and Rachel and Johnny become much more intimate. But when another murder occur ...more
Hardcover, 346 pages
Published September 13th 1993 (first published January 1st 1993)
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3.97  · 
Rating details
 ·  5,317 ratings  ·  194 reviews


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MelissaB
Rachel Grant is a thirty-four year old teacher in a small town in Kentucky who causes a big stir when she allows Johnny Harris, a man who was convicted of murdering his girlfriend during their senior year of high school, to work in her hardware store on parole from prison. Rachel was Johnny’s English teacher in high school, where Johnny was the typical bad boy from the poor part of town but she was able to bond with him over a shared love of reading. Rachel does not believe Johnny killed the gir ...more
Shawna
Aug 31, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of bad boy heroes; all romance fans!
Recommended to Shawna by: Melissab
5 stars – Contemporary Romance/Romantic Suspense

If you’re a romance lover who enjoys emotionally moving stories that tug the heartstrings, then I highly recommend this fantastic read. Thank you Melissab for giving notice to this great book because it would have been a real shame to miss out on it!

Johnny Harris is the local hell raising bad boy of his small Kentucky hometown who comes from the wrong side of the tracks. His father is an abusive drunk, and he and his siblings are all considered no
...more
Mo
May 22, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
2.5, maybe.

I was a little disappointed with this one actually. Think my expectations were too high! Could not really connect with either character. She came across as the more naive of the two.


He leaned toward her. His face was close to hers, too close.
He was making her uncomfortable again, as he no doubt intended.
That notion stiffened her spine.
"What?" she all but snapped.
"I had a major case of the hots for you when I was in high school. I still do.”



I haven't much more to say about it really
...more
Miss Kim
Sep 02, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone!
Recommended to Miss Kim by: Melissab
I loved this book! Thank you so much Melissab for bringing it my attention!

First I want to say that the age difference between the H&H is 5 years. He is 29, she is 34. I don’t consider that a May December romance in my opinion.

Johnny was unjustly convicted of murder 11 years ago. He’s just gotten out of prison and returned to his small home town in Kentucky. Johnny’s family was considered white trash. His father was an awful mean abusive drunk. He was the classic rebel teen that was always
...more
Jane Stewart
Nov 14, 2010 rated it liked it
The first 60% of the book was depressing, but the rest was very good romantic suspense and emotionally fulfilling.

STORY BRIEF:
Johnny and his siblings were raised by an abusive, hateful, low income father. Rachel was Johnny’s high school English teacher. She saw Johnny’s love of reading which he hid from others. She cared for him as a teacher. A girl Johnny slept with was killed. At age 19, Johnny was wrongly convicted of the murder and sent to jail. Ten years later he writes to Rachel asking her
...more
jenjn79
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Laura (Kyahgirl)
1/5; 1 star; D

I actually finished listening to this but am not glad I did. I kept hoping for some massive improvement.
Things I liked:
The narrator, Anna Fields
The portrayal of the kids and their mom.

Things I didn't like:
Everything else. Besides the fact that most of the characters were thoroughly unlikable, the mechanics of the book were clumsy and poorly executed.
I don't think I'd recommend this to any of my romance reading friends or my suspense friends or even my paranormal reading friends.
...more
JG
This book got me soaring. SOARING!
Oh. My. Gosh.


"You know what I used to dream about, in stir?" His voice was hoarse, the words low and fast and faintly guttural. "I used to dream about you. You were the only clean and good and decent thing left in my life, and I would dream about you. I used to dream about taking your clothes off piece by piece, and what you would look like naked, and how it would feel to fuck you really good. I used to dream about that in high school, too. In fact, I got off a
...more
Carrie
This is a hard-to-find audio book well worth searching for. Thank you to my friends for loaning it to me!

Two things make this book a listen to remember, and a book I'll probably revisit in the future. First, the narration was incredibly good. Anna Fields/Kate Fleming was perhaps the most talented narrator for contemporary fiction in her time. Her voices, inflection, timing and delivery are simply perfect.

Secondly, the love story has a realistic feel (the ups and downs and hesitations feel real
...more
Jacqueline J
Raising this a star on second reading. I really enjoyed it.

Older woman story. The author made it fairly easy to get over any squick factor about her having been his high school English teacher. It was pretty well written, the story was interesting and moved pretty rapidly. I'm fond of both the ex-con and the older woman tropes so a double win for me.
Vintage
Well-done whodunit suspense story with a wickedly bad boy hero and an honorable intelligent heroine with a bad driving record.

Rachel was Johnny's teacher when he was accused and found guilty of murdering his latest squeeze. When he's up for parole he asks her for a job as she is the only one who thinks knows he's innocent. That and his ulterior reason that he's been in love with her for years. Before you go, "Euw", he is only five years younger than her, and she never had feelings for him when h
...more
Glamdring

I bought this book years ago but for some reasons I never got around to read it. I'm glad I finally did.

When high school teacher meets bad boy...

"Then explain to me what trash is, Mother. I want to know. If being poor, or black, or drinking, or being abandoned by a parent, or spouse beating, or being divorced doesn't do it, I want to know what does."
Elisabeth spluttered, "I may not be able to describe it, but I know trash when I see trash, and what's more, so do you!"
Rachel felt herself trembli
...more
Audrey
Sep 11, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: contemporary
A decent story that was bogged down by the suspense side plot, this book was about 100 pages too long. Although this book had a lovely romance that featured good-girl-falls-for-bad-boy and older-woman-younger-man, I just couldn't pull myself past a general indifference to anything else happening in the book that DIDN'T feature the smokin' hot hero, Johnny Harris. Rachel Grant, the heroine, reminded me of the heroine from Lightning That Lingers in that her sheltered good girl (and somewhat insipi ...more
Krista (I remember you, Min) (Critical)
I loved this book, despite its perfectly corny ending. (I kind of like corny endings, though, so I was pleased).

First of all, the beginning was great. It really hooked me in and made me want to keep reading, plus it was laced with my kind of humor. We really dive straight into the story without getting huge info-drops or long-winded background stories.

I ADORE Rachel. She is one of my favorite heroines. The way she stood up for Johnny made me want to give her a hug. She was strong, but also kin
...more
Yona
Sep 02, 2014 rated it really liked it
I was a little skeptical of this book because of the age gap between the characters, I prefer when the male is older than the female not the other way around, but in this case it didn't bother me at all.
I liked the story although there was a lot of little talk and information I really didn't care about.
Kristiej
I was a bit surprised that I hadn’t posted a review for this book as it’s in my top 10 of all-time favourite books and I was sure I would have done a review if only to share the love I have for One Summer. But I’m making up for that now so hopefully other romance readers might be interested in giving this book a read. It’s a book I simply have to read every couple of years if not more and in fact when I switched to ebooks it was one of the first reread books I purchased and I have the comfort of ...more
Iraida
Aug 18, 2014 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Romance readers that don't need a deep story
Nice story and characters, but I found it all happened in a rush. I enjoyed this book, but certainly I won't read it again.

May contain spoilers:
As many romance books, I had the feeling that Rachel and Johnny fell in love too fast. There was not any kind of development here. Suddenly, the always-correct-and-puritan Rachel decides to turn her back to her family and her neighbours and doesn't even care about his current boyfriend. I found it hard to believe.


Anyway, it's an enjoyable reading.
Thenia
The story of a couple that that is meant to be together despite their differences, whether those are the 5 year age difference, the fact that Rachel used to be Johnny's teacher, or the fact that she is an upstanding member of the community while he has just been released from a 10 year prison sentence for the murder of his high school girlfriend.

She has agreed to give him a job so he can get out on parole, but he is far from the young man she remembered, and not nearly as grateful as she would h
...more
Kristiej
Jun 28, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a reread of a reread of a reread and I can keep going as I've lost count of the number of times I've read this book. It's in my top ten all time books. It's one of the books I simply HAD to have as an ebook so I could carry it with me always.
I'm having a hard time picking a rating for it. As an emotional and enjoyable read, there's no question it's even higher than 5 stars as I do believe it's my most reread book. I have absolutely no hesitation on recommending it to all readers who read
...more
Saly
Jul 03, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: older-woman
Johnny was the town's ultimate bad-boy, he came from what people liked to call trash, had a mother who ran off, and a father who liked to drink and beat the crap out of him and his siblings. He did wild things and the girls loved him. When he was eighteen he was convicted for murder, on the basis of his reputation and because the girl was last seen with him. Everyone considered him guilty except Rachel, who was his English teacher. Rachel was only five years older than him and saw huge potential ...more
Crista
May 19, 2010 rated it it was amazing
LOVE a tortured hero....and they don't get much more tortured than Johnny. Raised by an abusive alcoholic father, Johnny and all his siblings were labeled as "no good" trash and were alienated by most of the affluent townspeople. Rachel was Johnny's teacher, 5 years older, and was one of the only people that ever believed in and cared about Johnny. Johnny was convicted of killing a classmate and sentenced to do time in prison. The story begins as Johnny is released from prison and returns home ...more
Ann-marie
Jan 26, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: favorites
Rachel is a teacher who lives in a small town in Kentucky where everybody knows everyone. She has signed on to give Johnny(the man who was accused of rape and murder of his girlfriend ten years ago)a job and a place to live. So starts this romance-suspense novel. The whole town wants nothing to do with Johnny and Rachel has to constantly fight his battles that come up with the town folks. Johnny reveals right in the beginning that he has always have the hots for Rachel(who use to be his teacher) ...more
Jena
Aug 14, 2013 rated it really liked it
WHIPLASH!!!
That's what I got from the ending of this book! It was a plot twist I never could have imagined!
Overall, I liked the characters, the pacing of the story was good, and the ending was most definitely creative! But the romance between Rachel and Johnny just never connected for me, thus the four-star rating. It just felt a bit rushed, or contrived, and it felt like there were gigantic timeskips in the development of their relationship. They're awkward and uncomfortable around each other.
...more
Julianna
Jul 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Romantic Suspense
Reviewed for THC Reviews
One Summer has been sitting on my TBR pile for quite some time, and I’m so glad I finally got around to reading it. I’d heard great things about it, and I’m pleased to report that they’re all true. The story is a nice mix of contemporary romance and mystery/suspense. I’d say that the romance is definitely more prominent, but the mystery is always there, lurking in the background and slowly unfolding. It just doesn’t overwhelm the romance, which to my way of thinking is a
...more
Miss Rail
1.5 stars
The story and style didn't work for me at all.
The best thing about this book was listening to Kate Fleming's narration.
I can't say I completely didn't care about the plot because there was a lot of potential about both story and characters but too many things bothered me starting from Johnny & Glenda "relashionship" and ending with the poorly written paranormal twist.
▪ Didn't enjoy getting to know Johnny's very lovely fuck buddy and her children when the focus was supposed to be on
...more
Shannon
"One Summer" took another stab (pun intended) at the "ex-con released back into the small town" romance story. I admit to having a fondness for that storyline, but I find that most stories are, sadly, pretty similar. It's a small town. The townsfolk look down upon the hapless ex-con, who, invariably was innocent all along. Some woman takes pity on the guy, and they fall for each other despite the disapproval from the townsfolk. This story was that story... But, it was more too...

The novel examin
...more
Catarina Szelsky †
Jun 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I LOVED IT SO MUCH ESPECIALLY JOHNNY
ElaineY
REVIEW OF EBOOK & AUDIO; FEBRUARY 12, 2014
Narrator: Kate Fleming (Anna Fields)

This was an uneven story as far as enjoyment went so the 3 stars are a compromise.

The Narrator: The late Anna Fields was wonderful here. I liked her in the abridged version of Karen Rose's You Can't Hide so I was hopeful for an equally good performance here. I'm encouraged to try the Susan Elizabeth Phillips series, Chicago Stars and Wynette, Texas, both of which Fields narrated in their totality. I knew Fields was
...more
Lea's Audiobooks Hensley
This dual review was originally written for AudioGals as part of the first edition of our Hunting for Hard-to-Find Audios feature. Please refer to that article to understand the purpose of our Hunt.

Includes sound samples

Brenda and Lea’s Dual Review of One Summer
Narrated by Anna Fields

One Summer features schoolteacher Rachel Grant, now in her mid-thirties, and former student Johnny Harris, five years younger, who has spent the last ten years imprisoned for a murder he didn’t commit. An extreme ba
...more
Brenda Audiobooks Only
Narrated by Kate Fleming/Anna Fields - narration 5+*s - the narration easily bumps this book to 5*s.

Mini Review from AAR's Speaking of Audiobooks column - http://www.likesbooks.com/blog/?p=6961

ETA: I don't think that the older woman / younger man scenario is what made this relationship seem taboo for many, a 5 year age difference is nothing, it was the "Teacher to Student" aspect that raised eyebrows.

“Reading Karen Robards’ One Summer was a distant but fond memory. When I discovered it was avail
...more
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2,072 followers
Karen Robards is the New York Times, USA Today, and Publishers Weekly bestselling author of more than fifty books and one novella. She has won multiple awards including six Affaire de Coeur Silver Pen Awards for favorite author.
Karen has been writing since she was very young, and was first published nationally in the December 1973 Reader's Digest. She sold her first romance novel, ISLAND FLAME, wh
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“Thoroughly ruffled, Rachel turned her back on the source of her annoyance and started for the door. She could feel his gaze on her, and the notion that he was watching her made her suddenly self-conscious. In her teetering heels, she could not help but sway.
Just as she reached the door, he made an odd sound that caused her to glance back at him, startled.
“Rachel,” he said in what was scarcely more than a husky whisper, while his eyes drilled into hers, “don’t sleep with him. Sleep with me instead.”
Her breath caught for a moment as the words coiled around her like a seductive snake. Only by forcing herself to keep walking was she able to escape.”
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“She kept her nose in a book and her head in the clouds.” 11 likes
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