Since leaving the Army six months ago, Izzy Rivera has closed herself off from everyone and everything. Struggling with a debilitating case of PTSD, she has been fired from three jobs and was recently arrested for assault. Her last hope is a rehab program for veterans on Heron Island, which she was admitted to on a probationary basis and which she must complete to stay out of jail.
After establishing an illustrious career as a marine biologist, Ryan Callahan has returned to Heron Island to open a nonprofit to save the Chesapeake Bay and help his father--a fourth-generation waterman--expand his oyster farm. As one of the primary employers for the veterans' center, Ryan is counting on his new workforce to make the merging of these two operations a success.
But Ryan underestimated the challenges of employing a group of physically and psychologically wounded veterans--particularly the female Army veteran who wants nothing to do with his nonprofit, his father's farm, or the peaceful island that's supposed to help her heal. Can Ryan find a way to convince Izzy to believe in something again? Or will the shell she's built around her heart trap her in the past forever?
Wind Chime Summer is an amazing book about the power of healing and how discovering one’s talents can help you move on. It is the third book in the Wind Chime series written by Sophie Moss, which is just as wonderful as the first book in the series, Wind Chime Cafe. The story centers around Izzy Rivera, a decorated Army veteran who appears to be battling post-traumatic stress syndrome. Since separating from the Army as a gourmet chef, she was fired from three jobs and arrested for assault. To stay out of jail, she is accepted into a rehab program for veterans on Heron Island where she isolates herself from the other residents. [In the prior two books in the series we learn how the rehab program got started in an old refurbished inn.]
The other central character in Wind Chime Summer is marine biologist Ryan Callahan whose family has lived on Heron Island for generations as fishermen. He recently opened a nonprofit organization in conjunction with his new oyster farm in an attempt to save the Chesapeake Bay. His farm and nonprofit are the primary employers for the veterans’ center, and Izzy reluctantly goes to work for Ryan. It goes without saying that eventually, Ryan helps Izzy break out of her self-imposed isolation and helps her heal. Their relationship feels very realistic and the dialog between them flows naturally.
Hollis McCarthy narrated this audiobook and she did an outstanding job. She uses differing voices for all of the characters, young and old. Her narration was easy to listen to and she demonstrated the right amount of worry, exasperation, and yearning in all the right places. Simply put, this audiobook will pull at your heartstrings. Brava!