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Summer's Child

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  10,865 ratings  ·  796 reviews
Publishers Weekly:
Twenty years after 11-year-old Daria Cato found a baby abandoned on a beach in Kill Devil Hills, N.C., she is still very much a part of the child's life. Daria's parent's had adopted the infant, but now they are dead and she has accepted responsibility for Shelly--who has grown into a beautiful, slightly handicapped young woman. Without consulting Daria,
Paperback, 416 pages
Published December 24th 1999 by MIRA (first published 1999)
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Penny First publication 1999. Published again 2012.
Catherine Spannagel I haven't noticed any. There are some adult concepts, but they are not graphic. They use the word tramp a lot, but that is about it. …moreI haven't noticed any. There are some adult concepts, but they are not graphic. They use the word tramp a lot, but that is about it. (less)

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Average rating 3.98  · 
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 ·  10,865 ratings  ·  796 reviews

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Melissa (Mel’s Bookshelf)
I purchased this audiobook on as it was a special of the day and looked interesting. I had heard of Diane Chamberlain, but have never read one of her books before. After purchasing it I looked at some of my friends reviews on GoodReads, and was disappointed to see that all but one of my friends who read it gave it 2 stars or less! By that stage though, I had already started listening to it and was enjoying it, so I thought I would see how long I could hold out. Well, so glad I didn’t ...more
Sep 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing
As usual Diane chamberlain does not disappoint. I was hooked from the start of this book. I found all the characters really warm and loveable and very 3D. I felt like I actually knew these people. I was left guessing until the end and what a great twist it was. I'd definitely recommend this book. ...more
Cheryl Pashlin
With all due respect....what a bunch of crap. I am giving this book 3 stars as it was light and easy to read and it was not that I didn't enjoy it but what a bunch of nonsense. Everything just worked out so perfectly and the names of those beach houses drove me to the point of craziness!!I enjoyed her last book, Cee Cee Wilkes, but that one deserved a Pulitzer compared to this!! Don't let my review deter you. It is readable especially after reading a heavy duty Lionel Shriver before it. What get ...more
"She'd run the distance of several cottages when she stopped short. Had it really been a baby? Could it have been a doll, perhaps? She looked back over her shoulder. Yes, she was certain it had been a real, human baby".

Summer's Child by Diane Chamberlain

First, might I say..wonderful cover art! I would give a star for that alone!

That being said I didn't like this as much as I expected although it was an interesting read all the same. It was not as ethereal as I expected.

But it has several good p
Ashley Daviau
Jun 27, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was such a beautiful yet haunting story. And while I didn’t understand the motives behind the character’s actions, I couldn’t help but feel compassion for them anyways. Such decisions aren’t easy under any circumstances, let alone at such a young age. I kind of felt like I was a part of the story, puzzling out the answers alongside the rest of them and was just as shocked as they were when the final reveal came!
Dale Harcombe
Diane Chamberlain is a story teller and so I suspect readers will happily tend to go along with the story of 11 year old Daria Cato who found a new born baby on the beach. I know I did. With some help from the local hang gliding priest, the baby is adopted by the Cato family. They name her Michelle but she is known as Shelly. From her rescue of the baby people refer to Daria as Supergirl and she attempts to live up to their expectations. As an adult Daria takes care of Shelly after her mother di ...more
Dec 12, 2011 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
2.5 stars

One summer morning, eleven year old Daria finds a baby girl, placenta still attached, lying on the beach at Kill Devil Hills, NC. She swoops the baby up and takes her to the beach cottage where her family summers, and thus the baby is saved. The family adopts the baby and this story picks up 22 years later as a boy (now a man) who spent his summers in the cottage opposite theirs comes back as a true crime television host to try and solve the mystery of who the mother was and how this ba
Oct 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: own
First off, I can’t believe I waited TWENTY years to read SUMMER’S CHILD! It is one of the best books I’ve read this year so far. The twists and turns just kept on coming and hooked me from the very first chapter!

Diane Chamberlain has always been a favorite author of mine and SUMMER’S CHILD is exactly why! She stole my heart from the very first pages and she never let it go! SUMMER’S CHILD is the story of Shelly, a baby who is found in the beach, abandoned, found by a little girl, Daria.  Daria r
Sep 09, 2012 rated it liked it
When she was 11, Daria found a newborn baby girl lying on the beach and saved her life. Despite efforts by law enforcement to identify the mother (with suspicions cast on every teenage girl in their small cul-de-sac), the mother was never found and Daria's family subsequently adopted the baby, who they named Shelly. Later as an adult, Shelly became curious about her roots and asked an old family friend, Rory, to try to find out who her mother was.

The book was light and fluffy. Even though there
Jan 08, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: chick-lit
At age 20, Shelly Cato decided that she wanted to find her birth mother. Shelly was found on the day of her birth on the beach in Kill Devils Hills, North Carolina, and saved from near death by Daria who was 11 at the time. After none of the parents of the baby showed up, Daria’s family adopted Shelly. As Shelly grew up, it was apparent that she was slightly mentally hurt, probably by her traumatic first day of life but she grew up as a wonderful happy young woman with a family that protected an ...more
Apr 06, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I couldn't put this book down and read it in a day. I liked it instantly and enjoyed the characters. Everytime I thought I had the "who done it" figured out, the book twisted on me again. I definitely did not predict the ending at all which was great because I hate when books are predictable. This is my 2nd book by this author, but I definitely preferred this book to the other. ...more
Rhonda Rae Baker
Aug 04, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a beautiful story of love and hope with many secrets and past events unfolding. I was attracted to the novel because of the premise of a child that was found...but what I found were so many different angles that related to my own story. Obviously, when a reader identifies with the characters there can be some interesting things happen. What surprised me was the fact that this novel helped me deal with some losses that I had and for even the curious question as to why my birth mother wou ...more
Mar 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: like-it-like-it
I have a huge soft spot for Diane Chamberlain’s books and I have to say that this is my favourite read of hers so far. I love books that are family orientated with a dash of mystery and romance and I especially like how the author combines all of these factors to produce something that is so enjoyable to read, yet all feels so natural – the romance element never feels as if it is “tacked onto” the main part of the story.

Twenty two years ago, eleven year old Daria found a baby on the beach, Shell
Dec 21, 2015 rated it really liked it
Chamberlain never seems to disappoint with her novels. In this story, Daria is out walking on the beach checking for shells. She idly turns over a horseshoe crab she'll and finds a baby. Her parents adopted the little girl but Daria always felt like her caretaker since she had found her and when both her parents died, she continued to take responsibility for Shelly's well-being since she is developmentally slow. Years later, Rory Taylor shows up in his family's cottage which he has not been to s ...more
❤Marie Gentilcore
Jul 08, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook, own
This was good and got even better at the end. I wasn't able to guess who left their newly born baby girl on the beach that night so I was happy that it stayed a mystery and that when it was revealed it made sense. ...more
Dec 04, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: audio
Oh wow, this was a massive disappointment.

A few years ago I read, and absolutely loved, The Midwife's Confession, and ever since have been waiting for a chance to read another of Diane Chamberlain's book.

There's no doubt that Chamberlain is a good story teller -- her narrative is totally plot-driven, and I'm okay with that, of course, when it works. I've got time now and then for a book that feels like a Hollywood movie. I do.

The major reasons that I struggled with this one was the total unrea
Jun 27, 2010 rated it liked it
For the most part, this was an enjoyable read. The story centers on discovering a girl's parentage after she was abandoned as a baby and the lives of her adopted sisters. While the cover of the book proclaims Chamberlain as a "Southern Jodi Picoult", I am not certain I would agree wholeheartedly. I did, however, very much appreciate the idea that Shelly, the grown-up abandoned baby, expresses throughout the novel: that as an adopted child, it wasn't that she felt her adopted family was bad or la ...more
Sep 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015, own-read
I was reading this book, thinking okay 4.5 stars. It was going the direction I was expecting, I was like this is so predictable. Then Diane Chamberlain got me again. She always tricks me with her twists!!!
Rachel Rowlands Talcott
Apr 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
Classic Diane Chamberlain book, a twist at the end that I didn't see coming. I wish it was part of a series so I could learn more about the characters before and after this book ...more
May 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book was filled with quite a few cliches, but still kept me hooked and in Diane chamberlain style you know there will be a few twists. Was a great story!
May 08, 2014 rated it it was ok
This is a perfect beach or holiday read. It was published back in 2000 but had a re-release in 2010. I found it on the Amazon Kindle charts for less than a pound, so that's why I got it.

On the morning of her 11th birthday, Daria Cato finds a newborn baby on the beach. She takes her home and with a little help, her parents adopt the baby and call her Shelly. 22 years later, Shelly writes a letter to Rory Taylor, who used to live near the Catos but is now a successful TV host. He specialises in T
Aug 29, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I just realized after I finished this book that I've read one of Diane Chamberlain's books earlier this Summer. I liked it a lot too. Looks like I have a new author. I like that her books are set on the Outer Banks in North Carolina because I vacationed there for two weeks a few years back and loved the place. It's always nice to read books that are set in places that I'm familiar with.

This book is about a newborn baby found on a beach by an 11 year old girl one Summer 22 years ago. The story qu
Oct 27, 2011 rated it really liked it
Another great suspense read from Diane Chamberlain. The description made me feel as if I was there. Well done!
Beth Lee
Oct 20, 2016 rated it liked it
A sweet book with a HEA ending. I had a 13 hour drive and this was perfect. Just the right amount of mystery, romance and family relationship interaction to keep me driving!
JoAnn Hoefler
Apr 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing

One of the best books I have read. It captivated me from beginning to end!!!!
2 stars.

The book was longish but succeeded in keeping its’ secrets until the end.
This wasn’t bad but I like the later books by this author better.
Sep 15, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018-read
You can find this review and others on my blog SleepySamReads!

Diane Chamberlain has recently become one of my favorite authors. I feel like her novels are a breath of fresh air. Sadly, this one didn't quite live up to my expectations. It wasn't awful, but certain things really bugged me. 

One of the main things was how Polly was discussed. I guess I can't blame it too hard seeing as the book is nearly 20 years old and language then is different than now, but it still bothers me a bit. I know it's
Lynne Zotzmann
Aug 25, 2020 rated it liked it
It was an easy summer read. Am familiar with the Outer Banks so it was easy to envision the physical area where the characters lived. Character development was good to start with but became predictable as the novel advanced. The mystery part of this novel was a little too easy to put together before its conclusion. Lots of twists and turns at the end.
Enjoy Diane Chamberlain’s books. They are all quick reads - perfect for summer.
I only gave it a 3 star because it turned more into a romance nove
Ieva Poniškaitytė
Aug 26, 2020 rated it really liked it
Was hoping for a more intense story. But even though at first glance it seemed like an easy detective, later it surprised me with a deeper look into various relationships: mother-daugther, sisterhood, old time lovers and so on.

As I’ve understood, this author aims to be as closer to reality as possible when telling her stories (cities, events), that is why I think this book is perfect for those looking for a light story with happy ending.
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Diane Chamberlain is the New York Times, USA Today and (London) Sunday Times best-selling author of 27 novels. The daughter of a school principal who supplied her with a new book almost daily, Diane quickly learned the emotional power of story. Although she wrote many small “books” as a child, she didn’t seriously turn to writing fiction until her early thirties when she was waiting for a delayed ...more

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