This is Woodson Harvey's second novel, following last year's wonderful debut Dear Carolina. I love her writing style, the way she begins each of her book chapters is truly unique, and sets up the reading perfectly! In this book, each chapter begins with an anecdote about life lessons that have been handed down through the family from multiple generations. Probably the most notable, and the one that ties the story together is:
"The lies that matter most are the ones we tell ourselves."
This book has two main protagonists, Lovey and her granddaughter Annabelle. Some of Lovey's story is reminiscing about her past, and how she met her husband, who is facing his end of life in the present. I loved this character! I completely embraced her love of life, family, and friends. Her anecdotes were poignant and spot-on, and her reasons for her secrets were honorable and believable. As for Annabelle.......sigh.......I truly couldn't stand this character! BUT, before you think this would be a reason to give up on this book, I found this in the discussion questions. I'm thinking I may not be the only person to feel this way, and was this what the author wanted, to create a character that could resonate one way with some readers, and another way with others?
Discussion question #7: Was Annabelle a sympathetic character, or were you frustrated by her choices? Why do you think she jumps into relationships? Could she have benefited from having some time alone?
My answer......Completely frustrated, because she's a spoiled, entitled brat who acts like she's still in high school, and HE** YES!
Now you will have to pick up a copy of this book to find out if you are Team Annabelle or Team OnDBookshelf 🙂 This is a wonderfully written book, the life quotes are worth their weight in gold. Well worth the read, and I am looking forward to seeing what this author comes up with next.