When twelve-year-olds Kat Steiner and Blake O’Neill meet at Camp Chickawah, they have an instant connection. But everything falls apart when they learn they’re not just best friends—they’re also half-sisters. Confused and betrayed, their friendship instantly crumbles.
Fifteen years later when their father dies suddenly, Kat and Blake discover he’s left them a joint inheritance: the family beach house in Destin, Florida. The two sisters are instantly at odds. Blake, who has recently been demoted from regular nanny to dog nanny, wants to sell the house, while social media influencer Kat is desperate to keep the place where she had so many happy childhood memories.
Kat and Blake reluctantly join forces to renovate the dilapidated house with the understanding that Kat will try to buy Blake out at the end of the summer. The women clash as Blake’s renovation plans conflict with Kat’s creative vision, and each sister finds herself drawn into a summer romance. As the weeks pass, the two women realize the most difficult project they face this summer will be coming to grips with their shared past, and learning how to become sisters.
My Rating: 4/5 Stars
You know those books whose cover and synopsis that just scream summer? One of those books is hands-down writing duo Ali Brady’s debut release, The Beach Trap.
With some inspiration from The Parent Trap, The Beach Trap begins at summer camp when twelve year olds Blake and Kat become best friends, until they discover through a loss that they are half sisters, sharing the same father. Flash-forward fifteen years later with no communication between them, Kat and Blake’s father passes away, leaving them the family vacation home. As a nanny who is need of money to take care of her ailing grandfather, Blake wants to sell the house, while rising social media influencer Kat will do anything to keep the house in the family, even with her own’s family’s financial situation looking not so great. As the sisters duel over much needed renovations and find themselves each in a summer romance, they need to figure out their past and what it means to be a sister.
The Beach Trap was the perfectly addicting summer read I needed while floating around the pool one afternoon. I devoured this book based on its setting alone, Destin, Florida, and as always, it made my beach house envy grow even more.And yes, there is an adorable dog throughout the book, too. It took me a little while to settle into the dual POV. Kat and Blake’s personalities and voices were distinct, but I felt a little pulled out of the story flipping back and forth at times, mainly because Kat has a very hard time nearly until the end of the book seeing things from Blake’s point of view.
While I did ultimately prefer Blake’s point of view, we got so much from each’s sister perspective. Kat is grieving over her father’s death, but also still has some hard feelings, as both of her parents don’t approve of her working full-time as an influencer, and feels that Blake had been using her as a kid and even now. On the other hand, Blake is trying to take care of her grandfather, work as a nanny (including looking over the family’s dog while they are away in France for the summer, deal with her feelings over her biological father’s death (even though he ignored her for most of her life), and really take over the houses renovations in order to sell and make the money she needs…oh and fall for a dreamy local gardener. All of these elements, including Kat’s own romance, were very well balanced and often connected to each other.
Overall, The Beach Trap was such a solid debut novel and is a must-read for your beach and pool days! I’m really looking forward to reading Ali Brady’s next book!
Have you read The Beach Trap? What are your thoughts? What summer beach reads have you been loving lately? Share in the comments?