In her third novel, Amy Mason Doan offers a refreshing story about music, family secrets and forgiveness.
Every summer, brilliant and beloved musician Graham Kingston turns his sprawling California coastal estate, the Sandcastle, into a commune for musicians, artists and friends from all over the country to gather for creativity and inspiration. In 1979, Graham’s niece, 17-year-old Jackie Pierce, is a first-time participant in the shindig—and a reluctant one. But with her father and stepmother honeymooning in Europe for the summer, there is nowhere else for Jackie to go.
Jackie is unprepared for life among all these free spirits—until she meets Graham’s daughter, Willa. Though complete opposites, the two girls hit it off almost instantly. They develop a deep friendship, and life couldn’t be better for the teenagers, until a tragedy changes everything.
Twenty years later, Jackie is back at the Sandcastle, just as reluctantly as before. The abandoned estate needs to be packed and put up for sale, but all she can think about is the summer of 1979. Sorting through her memories isn’t easy, so she wants to complete her task as soon as possible. But then a diehard Graham Kingston fan named Shane arrives and tries to convince Jackie to let him use the estate’s recording studio one last time. She agrees, choosing to stay even longer in a place that has brought her as much pain as joy.
Jumping between 1979 and 1999, Lady Sunshine unfolds with an artful combination of lyrical writing and twisting plot.