Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Saving CeeCee Honeycutt by Beth Hoffman

Saving CeeCee Honeycutt

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Twelve-year-old CeeCee is in trouble. For years she’s been the caretaker of her psychotic mother, Camille— the crown-wearing, lipstick-smeared laughingstock of an entire town. Though it’s 1967 and they live in Ohio, Camille believes it’s 1951 and she’s just been crowned the Vidalia Onion Queen of Georgia.

The day CeeCee discovers Camille in the front yard wearing a tattered prom dress and tiara as she blows kisses to passing motorists, she knows her mother has completely flipped. When tragedy strikes, Tootie Caldwell, a previously unknown great-aunt comes to CeeCee’s rescue and whisks her away to Savannah. Within hours of her arrival, CeeCee is catapulted into a perfumed world of prosperity and Southern eccentricities—a world that appears to be run entirely by women.

While Tootie is busy saving Savannah’s endangered historic homes from the wrecking ball, CeeCee encounters a cast of unforgettable, eccentric characters. From the mysterious Thelma Rae Goodpepper, who bathes in an outdoor tub under the watchful eyes of a voyeuristic peacock, to Oletta Jones, the all-knowing household cook, to Violene Hobbs, the loud-mouthed widow who entertains a local police officer in her yellow see-through peignoir, the women of Gaston Street keep CeeCee entertained and enthralled for an entire summer.

But CeeCee’s view of the world is challenged in ways she could have never imagined: there are secrets to keep, injustices to face, and loyalties to uphold. Just as she begins to find her ballast and experiences a sense of belonging, her newfound joy collides with the long-held fear that her mother’s legacy has left her destined for destruction.

Laugh-out-loud funny, at times heartbreaking, and written in a pitch-perfect voice, Saving CeeCee Honeycutt is a spirited Southern tale that explores the intricate frailties and strengths of female relationships while illuminating the journey of a young girl who loses her mother but finds many others.(less)

When I first heard of the book "Saving CeeCee Honeycutt" I thought it was one of those chic books. Then I kept seeing it on the blogosphere and people were claiming it was very good. So, I saw it on the shelf at our local store, it was relatively short and the cover was pretty, so I bought it. Turns out, it IS really good! CeeCee is 12 and she has taken care of her mother who has slowly gone insane, for most of her young life while her father is absent most of the time. When her mother dies in a freak accident, CeeCee's Great Aunt Tootie comes to take her to Georgia. Aunt Tootie is a lovely woman and the most gracious female character I have ever read. She helps CeeCee adjust to a new city, buys her new clothes, and helps her work through her grief. Aunt Tootie has a housekeeper/cook named Oletta who teaches CeeCee a lot about life and takes her on a couple of great adventures. Aunt Tootie has a whole group of women-friends who take it upon themselves to save all the old family homes in Savannah when the city tries to have them torn down. Her neighbors are quite eccentric women, too. There are only 2 men in the whole novel -- one is CeeCee's father and the other is the policeman one of Tootie's neighbors is having an affair with. All the women have unique personalities and are very interesting in their own right let alone how the interact with CeeCee. This novel takes place in the 60's in Savannah, GA, so civil rights is a big issue. If you are interested in that time period, coming-of-age books, and the relationships between women, you will like this book as much as I did. Go pick it up -- and the cover is pretty!!!

View all my reviews

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Blog Hop Tour -- August 12--15

Book Blogger Hop

I feel like I've been away for a long time. It has been a busy summer! I wanted to check in with all my blogging friends before they think I have gone extinct! So, I thought I would do the Blog Hop Tour this weekend...

Are you a book blogger? Are you a reader? Then welcome to the place where all of us connect over the weekend and chat about books!

Not sure what a book blogger is and if you are one? Do you have a blog? Do you blog about books? Do you write book reviews on your blog? Do you rave about books and authors on your blog? Is your blog content primarily about books? Then you are most likely considered a book blogger!

How it Works

As long as you meet the qualifications of a book blogger, you may add your book blog link into the linky list at But before you do that, there are a few requirements. Read up, to save yourself a headache with the linky!

1. Before you add your link, you must post about the Hop on your blog and link directly back to the DIRECT POST for this Hop, like this. The linky is going to review the link that you enter in your submission, looking for a link to this post on your blog. If it doesn’t find one, your link will not be approved. This is called back linking and the hostee, had to institute it because people were taking advantage of the Hop and getting some free advertising without promoting the Hop themselves. You can read more about this here.

2. While you are creating your post, answer the following question (there’s a new prompt each week)!

“Let’s talk crazy book titles! Highlight one or two (or as many as you like!) titles in your personal collection that have the most interesting titles! If you can’t find any, feel free to find one on the internet!”

Here's my answer: Jane Bites Back by Michael Thomas Ford

Two hundred years after her death, Jane Austen is still surrounded by the literature she loves—but now it's because she's the owner of Flyleaf Books in a sleepy college town in Upstate New York. Every day she watches her novels fly off the shelves—along with dozens of unauthorized sequels, spin-offs, and adaptations. Jane may be undead, but her books have taken on a life of their own.

To make matters worse, the manuscript she finished just before being turned into a vampire has been rejected by publishers—116 times. Jane longs to let the world know who she is, but when a sudden twist of fate thrusts her back into the spotlight, she must hide her real identity—and fend off a dark man from her past while juggling two modern suitors. Will the inimitable Jane Austen be able to keep her cool in this comedy of manners, or will she show everyone what a woman with a sharp wit and an even sharper set of fangs can do?

WHAT'S YOUR ANSWER? Leave a comment!