Monday, April 4, 2011

The Peach Keeper Review

The Peach Keeper

The New York Times bestselling author of The Girl Who Chased the Moon welcomes you to her newest locale: Walls of Water, North Carolina, where the secrets are thicker than the fog from the town's famous waterfalls, and the stuff of superstition is just as real as you want it to be.

It's the dubious distinction of thirty-year-old Willa Jackson to hail from a fine old Southern family of means that met with financial ruin generations ago. The Blue Ridge Madam - built by Willa's great-great-grandfather during Walls of Water's heyday, and once the town's grandest home - has stood for years as a lonely monument to misfortune and scandal. And Willa herself has long strived to build a life beyond the brooding Jackson family shadow. No easy task in a town shaped by years of tradition and the well-marked boundaries of the haves and have-nots. 

But Willa has lately learned that an old classmate - socialite do-gooder Paxton Osgood - of the very prominent Osgood family, has restored the Blue Ridge Madam to her former glory, with plans to open a top-flight inn. Maybe, at last, the troubled past can be laid to rest while something new and wonderful rises from its ashes. But what rises instead is a skeleton, found buried beneath the property's lone peach tree, and certain to drag up dire consequences along with it. 

For the bones - those of charismatic traveling salesman Tucker Devlin, who worked his dark charms on Walls of Water seventy-five years ago - are not all that lay hidden out of sight and mind. Long-kept secrets surrounding the troubling remains have also come to light, seemingly heralded by a spate of sudden strange occurrences throughout the town.

Now, thrust together in an unlikely friendship, united by a full-blooded mystery, Willa and Paxton must confront the dangerous passions and tragic betrayals that once bound their families - and uncover truths of the long-dead that have transcended time and defied the grave to touch the hearts and souls of the living.

Resonant with insight into the deep and lasting power of friendship, love, and tradition, The Peach Keeper is a portrait of the unshakable bonds that - in good times and bad, from one generation to the next - endure forever.

How I Found This Author
I normally would never have picked up these books because they aren't my typical read, but I'm so glad I did. A few years ago when I use to work at Borders they had Garden Spells ARC for us to read, I was debating it for awhile but then I decided what the hell I'm not paying for the book I might as well give it a go. Low and behold I absolutely loved the book and when we got in an ARC of Sugar Queen I took that one as well and now I keep an eye out for all the rest of her release dates. I also have a hardback copy of each book.  

What I Love About This Author's Amazing Books
I would have to say the best comparison and way to describe these books would be Simply Irresistible with Sarah Michelle Gellar, they have that really down to earth true life characters with problems and an imperfect life mixed with a little touch of magic. Just a touch tough to make it seem completely plausible. 
I also love that these book are stand alone books, in a sea of series it is refreshing to have independent books. Although they do slightly connect, some previous characters will make a short cameo in the current book. You could read this out of release order if you wanted to. 

What I Liked About The Peach Keeper
This book follows many different characters and it will jump to each characters perspective, but I have never gotten confused nor annoyed with this, I love getting to know what each person is feeling and learning their issues. Sarah does well with giving the 2 main female leads an adequate amount of page time, but also including their love interest as well as a few family and friends giving their page time so they can tell about what they are seeing or know about the situation. 
Lessons To Be Learned
I always feel I have gained a few little life lesson after reading these books
Friends are important and support your friends when they need you
Figure out what makes you happy in life and don't let society or others hold you back
Live, learn and grow
Life is too long to have regrets
I love the tug of war, we are great friends and I don't want to ruin the relationship we have to try for something that might not be there. The whole finding long buried bones under a peach tree and what happened all those years ago between their grandmothers? I love the flashbacks of what the characters use to be in high school and how they have tried so hard not to be what they were.

What I Would Love to See
Even though I love the fact that these aren't series/sequel books, I can't help but want to read more about the characters and what happens after the book ends. But I am completely happy with getting other stories that she writes.

Yes, get all these books, if you haven't read them you need to try them, step out of your normal/typical reads and pick these up.
This is a wonderful feel good book that can be read in 1-2 sittings.

Garden Spells: Trade and quality paperback as well as hardcover
Sugar Queen: Quality paperback and hardback
The Girl Who Chased the Moon: New in paperback and hardback
The Peach Keeper: Hardback only, just released a week ago
She is currently working on book 5 publish date TBD

Have you read any of Sarah Addison Allen's books?



Andrea said...

Great post!

Jennifer A said...

I need to read Garden Spells still! Her books sound really good. Great review!

I love that you have 3 completely stuffed bookshelves! I want to see it bigger! :)

Hhhmmm. Hotels by Powells? I'm not really sure. I don't venture downtown too often. Sorry! I didn't realize she was making n appearance. I am going to tell my dad!

Jennifer of Little Shelf

Kristina said...

Her books are amazing!!

Jennifer A said...

I'll definitely check out Garden Spells next time I go to Powells. I've had that one on my 'to read' list for a while.

Yeah, I have no idea about hotels because when anyone I know comes in town they just stay with us! The only hotel I could think of was The Hilton, and that is not cheap. LOL

Thanks! I'll go check out that list and tell my dad about it.

A built in bookshelf would be amazing! I'm in the same boat as you though. We want to buy a different house in 5 years or so, so building shelves in the wall would be pointless. :/

Jennifer of Little Shelf

Marlene Detierro said...

Sarah Addison Allen is a fantastic author, I agree Sugar Queen is also my favourite of hers although Garden Spells is a close second! I can't wait to read this one.

Marlene Detierro (Eureka Joe's)