Member Reviews

An actress named Rey has been in a professional slump and is seeking work when the perfect opportunity falls into her lap from her agent. Rey has a past that she’s been keeping hidden, but it comes to the public’s attention as she’s thrust back into the limelight with her new movie. Her youngest sister disappeared as they vacationed in France as children, and now people are spectating as what could have happened and whether Rey could have been involved. Rey is forced to face her fears as the movie she’s booked puts her back in the ocean, which she’s avoided since her sister went missing.

I enjoyed this read, but the ending definitely left more to be desired. I felt like there was an incredible build up with the story, and then it felt rushed in the last few chapters. Otherwise it was a great read!

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Nina Manning is one of my favourite authors, so I was super excited to read this new book. It certainly didn’t disappoint.
It drew me in quickly and I had to keep reading on. The ending is fabulous and unexpected. It’s the perfect beach read.

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Rey has finally gotten the acting job she has needed, but there is a catch. She must swim in open water, something she hasn't done in fifteen years.

I like a good conquering your fears story but this one didn't really give us that as I was expecting. I liked the dual timelines so we can learn why Rey is afraid. The book is billed as a thriller but I didn't feel like it was one. Read more like a drama about past and current events. The conclusion came up fast but left a few thins unanswered. I found the flashback sections of the book the most interesting part.

I just felt like there needed to be more at the end.

Thanks to netgalley and Boldwood Books for the arc.

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Initially uncertain about "Her Last Summer," I found myself inexplicably drawn to it, and I'm delighted that I was. The dual-timeline narrative was engaging, and the plentiful twists compelled me to read 'just one more chapter' long into the night, well past the time I should have set it aside.

Thank you to NetGalley and Boldwood Books for my ARC.

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I thought this book touched on very important family dysfunction themes, mental health, and trauma, which are all deserve representation. I generally liked the main character, and I wanted good things for her. The pacing of this book was good and it kept my focus throughout.

However, this dual timeline felt a little disjointed to me. What was going on in Rey’s current life almost felt irrelevant. I felt some of the subplots in the current timeline were fillers, and weren’t important to the overall story. I think having a current timeline was necessary for this story, but the actual plot of the current timeline could have been more valuable to the story.

Overall, I found this to be really well written, interesting story, and I enjoyed it very much.

Thank you so much to Boldwood Books and Netgalley for the opportunity to read this advance copy!

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Her Last Summer is the 7th book that I've devoured by Manning and have thoroughly enjoyed.

In the summer of 2008 Rey's little sister went missing, never to be seen again. Fast forward to the now and Rey's deep seated fear of the water...did she harm her sister, or is she harbouring the regrets that she couldn't save her?

It's a moderately paced domestic thriller, that's told across dual timelines with Manning taking both Rey and the reader on the search for redemption.

I found it to be quite an emotive read. It touches on several sensitive subjects throughout and shows just how far you go to protect your family.

A brilliant story, with a wow ending.

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"Her Last Summer" by Emily Freud follows Rey Levine, a former actress grappling with a past trauma that resurfaces when she lands a dream role requiring her to swim in open water—something she hasn't done since a tragic event fifteen years ago. While the premise is intriguing, the story starts slowly and struggles to maintain momentum. The flashbacks add interest, but the plot lacks sufficient twists, and the ending feels rushed with unresolved loose ends. Overall, it's a decent read but falls short of its full potential.

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Her Last Summer is Nina Manning's tenth book but it's the first of her novels that I have read and I really enjoyed it.

Rey is filled with guilt after her little sister disappeared whilst her family was on holiday. Rey was just a child herself so it really wasn't her fault but her family still blamed her and the whole devastating event shattered her family into a million pieces. Rey is now an actress, which is unsurprising as the last person she wants to be is herself.

It is so heartbreaking to see how one event in their past can shape a person's whole life. Rey is searching for oblivion so she doesn't have to remember her past but the memories start resurfacing as soon as Rey steps foot in the pool. Rey holds the key to what happened to her sister but someone else knows too and they'll do anything to stop her as they follow her from London to the Scottish Highlands. Yikes!

Her Last Summer is tense, disturbing and a little creepy with a dark family secret at its heart. I shall definitely be reading more of Nina Manning's books after enjoying this one so much.

I received a digital ARC to read and review for the blog tour and this is my honest and unbiased opinion.

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Her Last Summer is a powerful mix of the past and the present told through a dual timeline. I was pulled into Rey’s story instantly and couldn’t read the pages fast enough, the writing is so compelling and the profound effect of trauma is dealt with sensitively. I also loved the fact that we were given the jigsaw pieces of the mystery and the truth of what happened night. If you like a slow burn domestic thriller I highly recommend this one and you will need to keep reading.

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This was a super quick read, I adore Nina's writing style and this kept me hooked early on until the last page. Her books always feature villains that we love to hate. I did find the twists to be less than some of her other books. This will be a great Summer read .

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Rey Levine has not worked for the past two years. Although once a successful actress, her life has been plagued with memories of that last summer fifteen years ago, and the night when her youngest sister Franny, went missing, never to be seen again. The family were staying with their aunt in Corsica, and Rey was blamed. A breakdown two years ago has seen her immersing herself in drink, drugs and a series of soon forgotten men. An unexpected call from her agent with news of a leading role in a new film gives her the opportunity to escape this self destructive cycle in her life. However, the role she has been offered means she needs to swim - and Rey has not been back in the water since that fateful night.
Events unfold in a dual timeline - detailing Rey's current life and the events of that last summer. Desperate to grab this opportunity to restart her career, she joins her local sports centre and begins the challenge of getting back into the water. But as news of her new film surfaces in the press, so do details of the events of that last summer, and the paparazzi begin to take an interest. Although this intrusion is a setback, Rey manages to pull herself together, and is determined to overcome any obstacles. With security in place to keep the press at bay, she heads to Scotland.

As the story began, it was clear Rey’s breakdown two years ago had totally blighted her life. Her behaviour, for which there were moments of regret, was both destructive and dangerous, but clearly a means of temporary escape. The film offer was a godsend, and a lifeline. She was prepared to work hard and not waste this opportunity, but the unexpected public reminder of the past, threw her for a moment. The question was, could she overcome this?

The story was well structured, with Rey’s current situation cleverly interwoven with events from fifteen years previously. The writer creates a vivid picture of that last summer, the events that took place and how they led to the finger of blame being pointed at Rey.

It’s a thought provoking and compelling read, one that is difficult to put down. Highly recommended.

I would like to thank Boldwood, the author and Netgalley for a copy of Her Last Summer in exchange for an honest review.

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Review for 'Her Last Summer' by Nina Manning

WHAT did I just read!!!! WOW!!! I mean seriously Wow!! I was NOT expecting that lot fair play!!! This has GOT to start with a MASSIVE WELL DONE NINA!!!! An absolutely action packed psychological thriller!!

Firstly let's start off with the writing style!! This book is an extremely well written book by this amazing author which had me hook line and sinker!!! It is so smoothly and exceptionally well written with vivid descriptions I completely forgot I was even reading a book a few times. The blurb, title and cover really fit the storyline. Nina has created an absolutely explosive and addictive storyline that had me hooked from the gripping first chapter to the absolutely shocking ending!!!

As you can tell I LOVED the storyline. I found it to be realistic, very fast paced and I read it in just several hours!!! I loved the setting and atmosphere and just well... Everything!!! Twists after shocks after turns!!! Arggghhh... Its so hard to NOT say anything about them as it will give too much away and spoil it for future readers but it definitely left me speechless over and over!!! I have read hundreds of psychological books and it gets harder and harder to keep my interest and to shock me but these fantastic authors managed it hook, line and sinker Just brilliant fair play and all links in and wraps up perfectly!!! Nina has done an absolutely amazing job of weaving the past and present chapters together in a way to give the reader just the right amount of detail to drip feed them the history needed but not too much to give anything away. I cannot remember the last time I flew through a book so quickly. Each and every time I went to put it down to do something my fingers were itching to pick it back up as I just HAD to know what happened next!! Nina's evocative writing skills ensure you are sucked deep into the storyline seeing everything that is happening and feeling the tension, stress and suspense that each of the main characters are going through. My heart was in my throat throughout reading this fast paced, gripping and gritty psychological thriller! This may be the first book I have read by this amazing author but if all her books are like this I cannot wait to get stuck into them and I have added all her previous books to my wish list already and look forward to what she comes out with next!! It is ram packed with family, guilt, memories, abuse, dysfunction, regret and everything you could ask for in a non stop psychological thriller!

Clear your schedules before picking this up as you will not be able to put it down!!

Just like with the storyline the characters come to life with Nina's fantastic and emotive writing skills. They are well rounded, realistic and strong making them all the more believable. All the characters had their own unique personalities and I enjoyed watching the differences in their personalities from their younger selves to how they acted in the present but at the same time most of them had similar aspects to their personalities. Nina really has done an exceptional job constructing an addictive and explosive psychological thriller with fantastic and varied characters that you just won't be able to put down!! Regardless of whether you loved or hated them they each worked perfectly together to create this page turning and nail biting action packed thriller that you will not be able to put down!!

Congratulations Nina Manning on an explosive success!!! Welcome to my favourite author club!! Here's to many more successes 🥂!!!

Overall an absolutely page turning, addictive, gripping and explosive must read that will keep you addicted from the very start to the fantastic ending!!!

#HerLastSummer #NinaManning #BoldwoodBooks #BoldwoodBloggers #BookAndTonic #RachelsRandomResources #rararesources @BoldwoodBooks @BoldwoodBloggers @BookAndTonic@Netgalley @RachelsRandomResources @rararesources

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When out of work actor Rey Levine is offered an acting role in the Highlands she jumps at the chance. Then she finds out that some of the acting scenes require her to swim in the North Sea, which she is terrified of, and she thinks about refusing the role.
The story unfolds in dual timelines, the present and flashbacks to 2008 and a family holiday in Corsica where Rey’s younger sister went missing.
This is a good slow burn domestic thriller mentioning some dark issues such as abuse, alcoholism and bulimia.
The novel is well-written and the descriptions about fame, losing anonymity, and being chased by paparazzi seem very realistic.
However, the novel ends quite abruptly, leaving some loose ends.
Many thanks to the author, publisher and NetGalley UK for the ARC.

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I’m a fan of Nina Manning’s thrilling novels. This story is told in dual timeline from the present and 2009 when Rey’s sister went missing and is presumed dead. Her sisters death tore her family apart and Rey was blamed for it and has not gone in the water since. When she’s offered a part that requires her to swim in the ocean she is determined to get past her fear of water in order to save her acting career. Rey remembers the events surrounding her sisters disappearance as she swims. I enjoyed the back and forth timeline. Rey is very relatable and I understand her feelings of guilt. I liked that she was willing to overcome her fear. The first pages really draw you in and see you up for a great book!

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When out-of-work actress Rey Levine is offered her dream acting role, she knows she has to make it work. However, there's a catch: the film requires her to swim, something she hasn't done since that fateful summer holiday fifteen years ago—the summer her sister disappeared, and everyone blamed Rey.

Desperate to block out the painful memories, Rey's life spirals out of control as she turns to alcohol and fleeting relationships to numb the pain. Her current existence is a chaotic blur, teetering on the brink of self-destruction.

With her first dip in the cool water for the film, Rey initially believes she's found the perfect escape. Yet, as she immerses herself, old memories resurface, forcing her to confront the harrowing events of that dreadful summer she longs to forget.

Unbeknownst to Rey, someone is determined to keep the truth buried. They will stop at nothing to ensure the past remains hidden, even if it means destroying Rey's life all over again. As the lines between reality and memory blur, Rey must navigate a perilous path to uncover the truth and reclaim her life before it’s too late.

This is a first for me by the author and one I enjoyed and I would read more of their work. The book cover is eye-catching and appealing and would spark my interest if in a bookshop. Thank you to the author, publisher and Netgalley for this ARC.

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Compelling read, Every family have their secrets, some are darker than others. The truth will emerge no matter who you are at the end of the day.
Good thread throughout this book. I would have loved to been told what happened to Franny, or is there another book lurking.? It seems as if the material is their for a follow on.

Thank you Netgalley for letting me read this book.

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We all have memories of the past that we remember a certain way but they actually happened differently or what we saw isn’t what was really happening. This story is basically that and how the family is torn apart by the loss of the youngest child.

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Plagued by the disappearance of her younger sister while vacationing when she was 17, Rey struggles as an adult.

Finding early success as an actress, stories of her background and partying force a pause on her budding career. With her bank account dwindling, Rey is excited to resume acting and accepts an acting role in the Scottish Highlands. While trying to carve out a healthier future, it appears secrets from Rey’s past are determined to come out. Was she responsible for her sister’s disappearance as her mother has always said? Or were there much darker forces to blame?

This was an engaging story that tackles some dark topics such as alcoholism, bulimia, family dysfunction and abuse. I would recommend this if you have enjoyed other books from Nina Manning and/or enjoy domestic thrillers. This is available now in both print and audio version!

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Rey can’t or rather won’t swim. But if she wants a comeback to her acting career with a rather gorgeous costar, she’s got to bite that proverbial bullet and sort herself out. But why does she hate the water so much? Something that deep rooted has to have a reason!

Finding out that reason had me hooked. What had happened to Rey? As I read I got snippets of events that happened to teenage Rey in the gorgeous island of Corsica. But once I was enlightened on the whole story, I was left stunned. I had to reread what I read. I was gobsmacked.

Manning has crafted a story that left me with two separate breadcrumb trails one in the present and the other in the past, both of which I had to follow to get to the crux of Rey’s past and to understand what was happening in the present. The way Manning brought the two threads together in to one climax of a story left me stunned. It’s different to my other experience of Manning’s thriller writing and a world away from her Shattered Mums books but the one thing that links them all is an addictive story.

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Her Last Summer by Nina Manning is a gripping and suspenseful novel.
I’m a big fan of Manning’s work and this was another wonderful read.
The compelling narrative and well-drawn characters had me up so late.
The way she creates her characters is seriously the best. They are intriguing and entertaining.
Nina Manning's ability to build and maintain suspense makes this novel a captivating read for fans of psychological thrillers.

Thank you NetGalley and Boldwood Books for this ARC in exchange for my honest review.

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