Saturday, May 21, 2011

The Peach Keeper

Affirmative! I liked it just as everyone else seems to!

Publisher Blurb: 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.

This is my third Sarah Addison Allen novel, and I ate it up in a hurry just like the others. This one has made the rounds in the blogosphere, so I don't think I have anything revolutionary to add. I will say, this is not my favorite of her novels. I liked the overall premise, I liked the characters, but somehow I didn't feel quite as close to them or as involved in their lives as I have Addison Allen's characters in the other books.

Of the bunch, Willa Jackson was most definitely my favorite, though I felt her role as the "Joker" was a little contrived and weird. However, if I were to be friends with any of the characters, I'd probably get along with her the best.

This novel is a little darker than Addison Allen's previous works -- more ghosts, less magic for the heck of it. Maybe that's another thing that made this novel a little less enjoyable than the other two under my belt: it just didn't sparkle quite as much.

Small criticisms aside, it was a great book to keep me happily reading and de-slumped. Another winner from Addison Allen, if not perfect.

I'm counting this one toward the Once Upon a Time V challenge for it's fantastical elements.

15 comments:

  1. Since I have at times thought her other novels a bit too sweet, I may actually enjoy this one more now that you've said it's a little bit darker. Regardless, I know I'll be reading - and glad you liked it!

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  2. I haven't tried any of Addison Allen's work yet, but I have this one and Garden Spells to read. It sounds like I should start with Garden Spells.

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  3. I love anything with ghosts in it so I'm going to have to read this book at some point. I've yet to try this author but I'm looking forward to reading her books since so many people enjoy her.

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  4. Meghan, it's entirely possible, though the relationships in this one still tend to be pretty sweet.

    Kathy, this one wasn't bad by any stretch of the imagination, but I still love Garden Spells best. I was excited that one of the Garden Spells characters made a cameo in this novel.

    Samantha, can't wait to read what you think of Addison Allen!!!

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  5. Although the magical books will always be my favorite, I think I liked the characters in this book the best...especially Sebastian.

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  6. This sounds like a really interesting read! I haven't read anything by Allen yet but when I heard about it, I knew to place it on hold at the library. Great review.

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  7. I loved this book. There is something about Allen's writing that almost makes it impossible to not like her work. I agree that Willa would make a fabulously fun friend. I loved her quirks even if at times they did seem a bit overdramatized. But I love that she was both tough and vulnerable. I think that is what makes Allen's characters so refreshing: they are so multi-dimmensional.

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  8. I've only read her debut novel and just haven't gotten around to following it up with her other books. Glad to hear that this was a good read for you.

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  9. Jill,I did like Sebastian. He was a hoot! The kind of guy I'd go for! Ha!

    Thanks, Natasha! I hope you love it!

    Jennifer, I agree! I actually really liked Paxton, too, after I got to know her.

    Thanks, Iliana! Looking forward to whatever she puts out next, too! :)

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  10. I've yet to read any of her work, despite reading many positive reviews, but I will!

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  11. I just love all of SAA's books, which is really saying something because I'm not particularly faithful when it comes to authors . . . except Simon. And, who wouldn't be? You haven't met him yet, have you? 'Cause, you know, if he comes through your area and you don't meet him, this time, I'm going to have a hissy fit.

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  12. I've been wanting to read Garden Spells, and it sounds like I should! She sounds like an interesting author, is she a little like Alice Hoffman?

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  13. I have yet to actually finish one of her books, not because of any commentary on her writing at all but because I've been drawn to other things. I did read about half of The Sugar Queen last year and was enjoying it but then I was getting harassed by library late fees and never got back around to picking it up again. I know that is where I need to start again, although the cover of this one is calling to me.

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  14. Garden Spells is my *favorite* by her! I really enjoyed The Peach Keeper, and it looks like I missed one of her books with The Girl Who Chased the Moon. Must. Catch. Up.

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  15. Oh I love love her books. I agree they are my comfort reads. Love the magic. Can't wait to hear about what you think of The Girl Who Chased the Moon.

    Marlene Detierro (Eureka Joe's)

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