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Coral Memories (Coral Cottage #6)

Coral Memories (Coral Cottage #6)

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For Pre-order - Ebook Releases on June 11, 2024 | Audiobook Releases on July - August 2024

Don’t Miss the Final Chapter of the Coral Cottage: The Indomitable Ginger Delavie

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Book Description

Book 6, Coral Cottage Series

Don’t Miss the Final Chapter of the Coral Cottage: The Indomitable Ginger Delavie

In the final chapter of the beloved Coral Cottage series, Ginger Delavie takes center stage as Marina tries to unravel her grandmother’s extraordinary life. Ginger is a woman whose brilliance in mathematics and codebreaking took her across the globe, through the corridors of power and the glitz of high society. Ginger, now in the autumn of her years, decides it’s time to pen her story. She enlists the help of Marina, and her talented grandson-in-law, Jack, embarking on a journey that is as much about recording history as it is about discovering it.

From the dazzling soirées of Paris where Ginger rubbed shoulders with luminaries like Julia Child, to the charming streets of Summer Beach where she imparted her wisdom as a math teacher, Ginger’s life is a tapestry of adventure, intellect, and unexpected friendships. But as Ginger’s extraordinary story unfolds, so do the secrets she’s held close for decades.

And nothing will be the same again.

In a story of revelation and transformation, Marina, through her grandmother’s vivid recollections, finds herself on a path of self-discovery that challenges her understanding of family, history, and her place in the world. This final installment is not just a tale of a remarkable life; it’s a journey through the hidden corridors of a family’s legacy, revealing how the past can shape the future in the most unexpected ways.
Prepare to be whisked away on an enthralling adventure that spans continents and decades.

Coral Memories is a testament to the power of memory, the enduring bonds of family, and the indomitable spirit of a woman who lived ahead of her time. This is more than an ending —it’s a passage to a treasure trove of history, heart, and the magic that lies within our own stories.

Available in ebook, audiobook, paperback, and hardcover.


Read A Sample

The sea breeze was crisp, though the morning sun warmed Marina’s shoulders as she arranged fresh-baked bread on a table in her specialty food stall. She waved at a retired couple threading their way through the busy farmers market toward her. Anne and Charles had been her first customers—thanks to her sister Kai, who had insisted on handing out samples that day. 


While the initial decision to transform herself from San Francisco television news anchor to entrepreneur might have been forced upon her, Marina couldn’t imagine going back to the stress-filled job she’d held for years. 


“I have the rosemary-garlic focaccia bread you ordered,” Marina said, greeting the pair. With their stylish silver hair, deck shoes, and navy cotton sweaters draped around their necks, Anne and Charles looked as if they’d just stepped out of a commercial for high-end wealth management. Almost too perfectly cast.


Marina had once called them the yacht couple—and she’d been correct. Their gleaming white yacht—far too large for most of Summer Beach’s boat slips—loomed at the end of the marina beyond Mayor Bennett’s modest craft. They’d told her they were friends of local celebrity Carol Reston, and they’d docked there to visit Carol and other friends visiting from Los Angeles for the summer.


Marina had worked late last night on the large order, making sure she served nothing short of perfection to her best customers. 


This summer, she had to succeed, not only for herself but also for her children. The twins were turning nineteen this summer. Heather was finishing college, and Ethan was trying to figure out his life. Young adults perhaps, but still kids in so many ways. And she was the only parent they had.


But Marina had a plan. This wasn’t the first time she’d faced a tough challenge.


“I can always count on you,” Anne said. Diamond studs twinkled at the older woman’s earlobes as she inspected her order. “Smells marvelous, my dear. Our chef thought it perfect for our party.”


Kai lifted a plate of samples. “Marina is adding Quiche Lorraine to the menu this summer. I call it sophisticated comfort food. Try a bite.”


Marina and Kai had argued over the quiche. In a world of kale and quinoa and avocado toast, a savory egg custard seemed almost quaint. “I disagree,” her sister said. “Martinis made a comeback, and so will quiche.”


And so, quiche was the specialty of the day. 


Anne sampled one. “Marina, darling, this is divine. You’ve done it again.” The older woman motioned to her husband. “Charles, you must try Marina’s quiche. It reminds me of that little cafe on the Croisette, overlooking the Mediterranean.”


“Save me a bite,” Charles said as his phone rang. Answering it, he stepped to one side in the aisle.


Kai nudged Marina and whispered, “Told you the quiche would be a hit. People indulge on vacation.”


“These are selling fast,” Marina said, stretching the truth just a little. “I created this based on another one of Julia Child’s classic recipes—though I lightened it a little. Still just as tasty, though.” As she handed Anne a paper napkin, she recalled how she’d learned to make this recipe. 


When their grandmother, Ginger Delavie, lived in Boston as a young woman, she had become friends with Julia Child, the renowned chef and cookbook author, through their mutual government work. Some of Marina’s fondest memories were of Ginger gathering her and her sisters in the kitchen to teach them how to make her friend’s recipes. 


This was one of Julia’s favorites, Ginger would say. Or, this was Julia’s special omelet—the first one she made on television. After their parents died, these kitchen gatherings became even more important to Marina, Kai, and Brooke. Always brilliant in math, Ginger taught Marina and her sisters measurements and fractions in the kitchen before they started first grade.


Anne’s husband joined her, and she handed him a sample of Marina’s quiche. “As delicious as I’ve ever had,” he said, nodding.


“Don’t forget the cookies,” Charles said, though his smile didn’t reach his eyes.


“We should both forget the cookies,” Anne shot back. “But we simply can’t. We’ll take a dozen. Half oatmeal and half chocolate chip.” She paused, shifting her gaze to her husband, who was uncharacteristically quiet. “Who was that on the phone?”


“Jean-Luc,” Charles said. “His mother was in an accident. He’s leaving immediately.”


“Oh, no.” Anne furrowed her brow. “Is it quite serious?”


“I’m afraid so.”


Anne nodded. “Of course, he must go at once. Well, there goes the party we’d planned. I’ll call our guests to cancel. Without a chef, it’s all that we can do. Unless we serve cocktails and focaccia,” she added, her gaze resting on the bread that Marina had prepared for the party. Anne brightened. “We have plenty of caviar, though.”


“No reason to cancel,” Charles said. “We can take everyone out to a restaurant.”


“That’s not the point of this dinner party. Besides, I doubt if we can find reservations for that many people tonight.” Anne sighed. “What a shame. It was such a lot of work finding a date that worked for everyone. I hate to disappoint people.”


Marina didn’t mean to eavesdrop, but the couple was standing an arm’s length from her. A party tonight. She shot a look at Kai, who angled her head in the couple’s direction and arched a brow. Marina shook her head. She wouldn’t have much time to prepare, and it could be a disaster. “Kai, would you help Anne and Charles with the cookies while I wrap their quiche?”


“I’m so glad you came early this morning,” Kai said to Anne and Charles, springing into her role. “We often sell out, but we try to accommodate everyone. Even on very short notice.”

Early this morning, Kai had left their grandmother’s beach cottage to meet Shelly at the Seabreeze Inn for yoga. Kai still wore leopard-patterned yoga gear under a loose top, and her thick strawberry blond hair was caught in a ponytail. Whether on stage with her musical theater troupe or at the farmers market, Kai always stood out.


“We’ve learned to beat the rush here,” Anne said. “Last week, Marina had sold out of our favorites. So we called in our order ahead of time.”


Kai scooped up the cookies that Anne pointed out. “It won’t be long before you can visit Marina’s new cafe on the beach.” She threw another pointed look at Marina.


“I’ve heard about that from Mitch at Java Beach,” Charles said, nodding at the logo on her new apron. “The Coral Cafe, I take it. Good name.”


Marina smiled as she slid their order into a bag. “My grandparents bought their cottage on the beach decades ago, not long after they married. They called it the Coral Cottage. You’ve probably seen it from the beach.”


“Can’t miss the place,” Kai said. “It has a fresh coat of coral paint on it.”


“We’ve been serving casual suppers on a new deck with a view of the ocean,” Marina added. She did a quick calculation of the time. Maybe she could put together something simple for them on the patio. A salad and pasta wouldn’t take long, even for a crowd.


Marina had paid for the new deck with her severance settlement from the television station. Ginger’s insurance had also covered repairs after a waterspout had hurtled onshore just a few weeks ago. The twister had sheared the roof from the guest cottage and made a mess of the yard. They had just finished installing new shrubs and flowers. Fortunately, the new patio escaped damage. 


Jack Ventana, a writer who’d been renting the cottage from Ginger for a short sabbatical, had moved to a room at the Seabreeze Inn with his overgrown Labrador retriever puppy, Scout. As irksome as Jack and Scout could be, Marina missed taking the occasional morning walk on the beach with the pair.


But that was before Jack had pulled a disappearing act. After she’d joined him for what turned out to be a romantic swim at the Seabreeze Inn—the historic house that her old friend Ivy Bay had restored—he’d promised to call her. They’d even shared a kiss. But a week had passed, and then another, and he’d made no effort to contact her again. 


She was too busy for a relationship anyway.


As Marina secured the bag with tape, her mind whirred. She probably had time to create more than salads and pasta. She could do this. “I couldn’t help but overhear your conversation. You have a dinner party planned for this evening?”


“We did,” Anne said, looking glum. 


“We could host you and your friends on the deck,” Marina began.


Anne shook her head. “The whole point was that our friends wanted a tour of the yacht.” As her gaze fell on Marina’s apron, she pressed a finger to her lips. “Charles, you don’t suppose…

”
Here’s my chance, Marina thought.

Book Reviews

“A wonderful story… Will make you feel like the sea breeze is streaming through your hair.” – Laura Bradbury, Bestselling Author

“A novel that gives fans of romantic sagas a compelling voice to follow.” – Booklist 

“An entertaining beach read with multi-generational context and humor.” – InD’Tale Magazine
 
“Wonderful characters and a sweet story.” – Kellie Coates Gilbert, Bestselling Author
 
“A fun read that grabs you at the start.” – Tina Sloan, Author and Award-Winning Actress
 
“Jan Moran is the queen of the epic romance.” —Rebecca Forster, USA Today Bestselling Author

“The women are intelligent and strong. At the core is a strong, close-knit family.” — Betty’s Reviews

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