Hot Mess Summer by Melissa Foster

Hot Mess Summer

Posted on October 21, 2023 by Nadene @ Totally Addicted to Reading in Reviews / 6 Comments

Set in the small town of Chatemup, Massachusetts, Hot Mess Summer tells a light-hearted and heart-warming story about love finding you when and where you least expect it.


Hot Mess Summer by Melissa FosterTitle: Hot Mess Summer
Author(s): Melissa Foster
Narrator(s): Ava Erickson, Aaron Shedlock
Published by Brilliance Audio on October 17, 2023
Pages: 361
Length: 9 hrs and 25 mins
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance
Source: Netgalley, Publisher
Format: ALC, eBook
Purchase: Amazon|Audible
Rating: One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star
Heat Level: One FlameOne FlameOne Flame

Who buys a cottage in a New England fishing village on a whim? A stressed-out, twice-divorced romance writer and single mother looking for a fresh start, that’s who. Despite what my besties say about my three-year dry spell, I’m not looking for a man. Or drama. Or sex. I’ve got enough on my plate with writer’s block and a daughter who refuses to grow up. Community. That’s what I need. Unfortunately, it seems the universe has other ideas. Either Chatemup, Massachusetts, has a serious shortage of single women, or I’ve become a hot mess magnet for the male species. At least I’ve found one funny, good-hearted fish peddler Declan Miller, my brainstorming adventure buddy who stirs my creative juices. I’m his Writer Girl. He’s my Dimple Dude. Just scruffy, granite-chested, deep-voiced, ex-military brawn who happens to be― oh, Nicole, what are you doing to yourself? ―stoking a long-neglected fire without even trying. A self-confessed hot mess, divorced single dad Declan is too old for relationship games. Not interested. Same here. So why do I keep thinking about him? Preferably naked. Because I’m a hot mess, too? At least he’s inspiring me to write. If only real life were like one of my novels. At least then I’d have a better idea of how this was going to end.

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

This post contains affiliate links you can use to purchase the book. If you buy the book using that link, I will receive a small commission from the sale.


The story introduces Nicole, a twice divorced bestselling author. At the start of the story, readers learn of her split moment decision to purchase a cottage in Chatemup where she plans to spend the summer. She hopes to regain her writing mojo while making new friends. Now, Nicole declares she is not interested in a relationship, and neither is she looking for love. However, fate laughed in the face of her declaration by placing Declan, who also was not looking for a relationship, in her path.

I had so much fun reading this one. Foster did a wonderful job in creating the perfect balance of humour and serious moments. Nicole and Declan’s chemistry leapt from the pages. I had a wonderful time watching their relationship move from friends to lovers. Despite their issues and insecurities, all could see they were perfect for each other. While they may not want a relationship, they could not deny their connection. Their interactions were fun and intense. Prepare for some laugh out loud moments. These two will have you rolling with laughter in no time. I especially loved how he helped with her brainstorming sessions.

Hot Mess Summer delivered a different vibe from what I have come to expect from Foster. First, the main characters are older (the heroine is 38’and the hero 48): and the romance is a slow burn. Yes! You read right, slow burn, which is not the norm for Foster. Despite her deviation from the norm, she did not disappoint. In true Foster style, she gives her readers a story filled with small town charm, delightful characters and a sweet and passionate romance.

Hot Mess Summer is a story of self-discovery, healing and the creation of one’s own happiness.

Ava Erickson and Aaron Shedlock narrated. This was my second experience with Aaron’s narration and my third for Ava. They did a good job portraying Nicole and Declan. Their tones were pleasant, their pacing blended well with the flow of the story, and they gave the characters life. Although one could differentiate between the male and female voices, their tone sounded the same for both narrators.


Story Evaluation
World Building
Writing Style
Narrator (Audio)
Overall: One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

About Aaron Shedlock

Aaron Shedlock is a passionate and highly versatile voice artist with a broad range of styles and character voices in his repertoire. Known for his engaging and deep, resonant tones, he is the voice of several national and international commercial brands and a rising star in the world of audiobooks. A huge fan of classic and modern literature, he spends the majority of his time buried in a good book, either in print or audio, being inspired by his favorite authors and audiobook narrators with a hot cup of coffee close at hand.

About Ava Erickson

After sailing around the world and watching nearly a thousand sunsets from the bow of her boat like a true Viking, Ava Erickson settled down and started telling stories. Those stories can be anything from the sweetest romances to ones with a more erotic twist. When she found out she was nominated for an Audie in the Erotica category, she called all her girlfriends together and went to Provence, France, where they drank rosé and ate lots of bread and butter.

About Melissa Foster

Melissa Foster is a New York Times & USA Today bestselling and award-winning author. She writes sexy and heartwarming contemporary romance and women’s fiction with emotionally compelling characters that stay with you long after you turn the last page. Melissa’s emotional journeys are lovingly erotic and always family oriented, the perfect beach reads for contemporary romance and women’s fiction lovers who enjoy reading about loyal, wealthy heroes and smart, sassy heroines with complex relatable issues. Melissa also writes sweet romance under the pen name Addison Cole. Melissa enjoys chatting with readers and book clubs. Send her an email invitation to your next event! Never miss a brand new release, special promotions or inside gossip again by simply signing up to receive your newsletter from Melissa.

Nadene @ Totally Addicted to Reading
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