Elizabeth, Veronica, Rachel and Emily met at Camp Birchwood as girls in 1985, where over four summers they were the Clover Girls—inseparable for those magical few weeks of freedom—until the last summer that pulled them apart. Now approaching middle age, the women are facing challenges they never imagined as teens, struggles with their marriages, their children, their careers, and wondering who it is they see when they look in the mirror.
Then Liz, V and Rachel each receive a letter from Emily with devastating news. She implores the girls who were once her best friends to reunite at Camp Birchwood one last time, to spend a week together revisiting the dreams they’d put aside and repair the relationships they’d allowed to sour. But the women are not the same idealistic, confident girls who once ruled Camp Birchwood, and perhaps some friendships aren’t meant to last forever…
The Clover Girls is about four very different girls who become best friends at summer camp in the 1980s until life, death, adulthood and childhood betrayals draw them apart.
The novel is an ode to friends and dreams, how each changes our lives and why we too often and easily let those fade. It’s about how our friends love, support and complete us.
More than anything, The Clover Girls is about forgiveness -- not only others but also ourselves -- and about how our friends guide us through life's ups and downs, and help us rediscover who we were and who we still can be. A lot of love stories have been written, but I wanted to write a love story about friendship.
The Clover Girls was inspired by the deaths of dear friends, including a childhood friend as well as my father-in-law, whose losses caused me to reevaluate my own life and realize how fragile life is.
My friends ARE my life. Aren't yours? Whether your best friend is a childhood pal, a college roommate, a co-worker, a neighbor, your mom, your dad, your sister or brother, your grandma, or your cousin, The Clover Girls is about the unbreakable bond friends share.
I have a plaque given to me by a friend that sums up our besties:
A Friend Is Someone Who Knows You Are Not Perfect But Treats You As If You Are
If you loved Firefly Lane or Sweet Magnolias, The Clover Girls will speak to your heart.
And if you are a child of the ‘80s, the book will speak to your soul (Remember jelly bracelets, friendship pins, Madonna, Michael, Wham! and John Hughes movies? Remember Again!). I guarantee you won't let anyone ‘bogart’ your copy of this book.
My novels are inspired by my grandma (Viola Shipman, my pen name, which is a tribute to her and our elders) and her heirlooms, life, love and lessons. She sacrificed for me and my family to have a better life, and inspired my love of books and writing. My grandma also taught me the simplest things in life mean the most -- friends, family, our health -- and we're being reminded of that more than ever right now. That's what this novel - and all my novels – focus on. More than anything, this novel offers hope, which we need more than ever these days.