Tuesday, November 2, 2021

Book Review and GIVEAWAY: Christmas in Peachtree Bluff, by Kristy Woodson Harvey {ends 11/9}

Guest review by: Becki Bayley

He was right. Adam and I might not have agreed one hundred percent of the time on things like where we should live and precisely what our future should hold. But it didn’t matter. I knew now that that didn’t mean I should just roll over and give in to anything he wanted, and that was growth for me. But I did know that something like a house didn’t matter at the end of the day. Not really.

I squeezed James’s knee and got up. “We are lucky. Let’s just hope our luck holds out.”

I left James and stood in the doorway of the stateroom I was sharing with my family, watching as my husband fluffed the comforter and spread it out over the top of the bed. I walked into the room and locked the door shut behind me. “Hey,” he said, smiling.

I put my finger to his mouth  and then kissed him. He pulled back and smiled at me. I kissed him again and lifted his shirt over his head, drawing him close enough that I could feel his heartbeat. My heart swelled with love for this man who was always there for me, who I knew was always on my team. As I lay back on the comforter, everything we’d been going through faded into the background. It was just Adam and me and a bright, shining future, stretched out into the distance like the eternal tide before us. And I knew James was right: we were, without a doubt, the lucky ones.

What a quaint, cozy town and charming cast of characters! The author’s note stated that she thought the Peachtree Bluff stories were done, til pandemic upheaval inspired one last holiday visit.

Official synopsis:
When the Murphy women are in trouble, they always know they can turn to their mother, Ansley. So when eldest daughter Caroline and her husband, James, announce they are divorcing—and fifteen-year-old daughter Vivi acts out in response—Caroline, at her wits end, can’t think of anything to do besides leave her with Ansley in Peachtree Bluff for the holidays. After all, how much trouble can one teenager get into on a tiny island?

Quite a lot, as it turns out.

As the “storm of the century” heads toward Peachtree Bluff, Ansley and her husband, Jack, with Vivi in tow, are grateful they’re planning to leave for the trip of a lifetime. But Vivi’s recklessness forces the trio to shelter in place during the worst hurricane Peachtree has ever seen. With no power, no provisions, and the water rising, the circumstances become dire very quickly…and the Murphy sisters, who evacuated to New York, soon realize it’s up to them to conduct a rescue mission. With the bridges closed and no way to access Peachtree Bluff by land or air, they set sail on Caroline’s boat, The Starlite Sisters, determined to rebuild their beloved town—as well as their family.

This book was wonderful as a stand-alone. While there are three other Peachtree Bluff books (and some of their focal characters can probably be guessed based on references in the holiday book), Christmas in Peachtree Bluff was really about the Murphy family, with just a dash of romance on the side.

Viv, Caroline’s teenage daughter, started out as very unlikable. Her rage at her parents’ divorce was leading her to make some poor choices and act like quite a brat. While her introspection during her transformation seemed especially deep for a 15-year-old, it was acceptable to just have her as a more pleasant human being.

The author’s note made it sound like the series may be done, the holiday book did open up a couple more options for other books that could extend the series. The writing style was conversational, friendly, and engaging, and books about quaint towns and charming people are always a lovely escape.

That being said, I gave this book 4 out of 5 stars. While it may not be too memorable months from now (or maybe just a bit from the hurricane), it was a nice way to spend a few hours and start thinking about the Christmas-y time coming soon.

{click here to purchase}

Becki Bayley is ready for holiday music now. Find out what she’s listening to and reading in her infrequent Instagram posts as PoshBecki.

GIVEAWAY:

One of my lucky readers will win a copy of Christmas in Peachtree Bluff!

Enter via the widget below. Giveaway will end on Tuesday, November 9th, at 11:59pm EST, and winner will be notified via email the next day and have 24 hours to respond, or an alternate winner will be chosen.

U.S. residents only, please.

Good luck!

Christmas in Peachtree Bluff, by Kristy Woodson Harvey

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