Review: The Secret to Southern Charm (Peachtree Bluff #2) by Kristy Woodson Harvey

I have a soft spot in my heart for southern literature. In college I had to read Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil and that book actually revived my interest in reading. At that time I hadn’t picked up a ‘for fun book’ in about five years so when I read that book even though it was for a class, I remembered how much I loved books.

One of the things that I loved about that book was the unique southern charm. Now that book was obviously not chick lit or women’s fiction and I am most certain that it was not meant to be ‘charming’ but the setting really stuck with me and since then I have read a number of books set in the south which brings me to this book and the Peachtree Bluff series!

So many things about this series scream southern charm! The characters, the setting, even the covers just remind me of sweet tea! When the first book in the series came up for review, I couldn’t say no. It just sounded so summery and fun and I absolutely fell in love with it. I have read other books by Woodson Harvey and she writes with such confidence in the genre that it’s hard for me to pass on any of her books! Since reading her first book, Lies and Other Acts of Love, then I have been eager to read anything by Woodson Harvey!

After finding out her military husband is missing in action, middle sister Sloane’s world crumbles as her worst nightmare comes true. She can barely climb out of bed, much less summon the strength to be the parent her children deserve.

Her mother, Ansley, provides a much-needed respite as she puts her personal life on hold to help Sloane and her grandchildren wade through their new grief-stricken lives. But between caring for her own aging mother, her daughters, and her grandchildren, Ansley’s private worry is that secrets from her past will come to light.

But when Sloane’s sisters, Caroline and Emerson, remind Sloane that no matter what, she promised her husband she would carry on for their young sons, Sloane finds the support and courage she needs to chase her biggest dreams—and face her deepest fears. Taking a cue from her middle daughter, Ansley takes her own leap of faith and realizes that, after all this time, she might finally be able to have it all (summary from Goodreads).

I love how real and honest Woodson Harvey writes. She doesn’t try and make her characters and their lives look all pretty and glamorous. If she did I feel like the characters would ring false. It’s her ability to create real characters with flaws, secrets, issues, and real life problems that makes them so endearing and entertaining. She adds in this great mixture of humor to her stories that even though the issues some of her characters are facing are tragic and sad, there is always a hint of humor which I think helps balance out some of the tragedy that’s going on. While this book has some seriousness to it, for me it was still a beach/summer read though, so don’t let the description fool you. I know reading about a military wife who’s husband goes missing etc doesn’t sound like a beach read but I promise that it isn’t bleak. Rather than give away too much, just pick it up and read it and you will see what I mean!

This book picks up where Slightly South of Simple left off but I don’t think you would need to read that book first to enjoy this one. Sure there are some references to the first book, but this book stands on it’s own so you could easily pick this one up and start there. Each book is about one sister (there are 3) so each book is each sister’s platform rather than one long narrative if that makes sense.

If you are taking a vacation and need something light to read and get lost in, Peachtree Bluff is a great place for that. Woodson Harvey’s writing is refreshing, confident, and knowledgable and I love watching her stories unfold. Each one is just as good or better than the one before!

Challenge/Book Summary:

Book: The Secret to Southern Charm (Peachtree Bluff #2) by Kristy Woodson Harvey

  • Kindle Edition, 400 pages
    Expected publication: April 3rd 2018 by Gallery Books
    ASIN B075LPF23X
  • Review copy provided by: Publisher/Author in exchange for an honest review.

This book counts toward: NA

  • Hosted by: NA
  • Books for Challenge Completed: NA

Recommendation: 4 out of 5

Genre: chick lit, women fiction, southern lit

Memorable lines/quotes:

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