Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Sweet Tea and Sympathy: Southern Eclectic

Greetings!  Enchantress of Number by Jennifer Chiaverini is out today along with Live and Let Fly by Clover Tate and Comic Sans Murder by Paige SheltonCrust No One by Winnie Archer will be released on December 26.  It is the second book in A Bread Shop Mystery series.

Sweet Tea and Sympathy by MollyHarper is the first book in Southern Eclectic series.  Margot Cary is an event planner with Elite Elegance in Chicago until her latest soiree is sabotaged by the chef (he put out a shrimp tower).   Margot loses her job and is unable to find another one after the party fiasco is posted on You-tube.  She is shocked when she receives a call from Tootie, her great aunt, in Lake Sackett, Georgia.  Tootie is offering Margot a job at McCready Family Funeral Home and Bait Shop (you can bury your loved one and then pick up bait for fishing).  Margot accepts the position, but she insists it is just temporary.  Margot soon discovers that life in Lake Sackett is very different from Chicago.  Everyone knows your name, your family and your personal business.  Margot delves into her new position and finds romance with elementary school principal, Kyle Archer.  But what happens when Margot gets offered a position out-of-state?

Sweet Tea and Sympathy is a quirky, zany over-the-top story.  The author shoved too many characters into the story.  There are numerous relatives and townspeople.  I found it impossible to keep them all straight (I gave up after a while).  The pace of the novel is slower than it needs to be (thanks to the numerous characters).  It needed a snappier pace.  I was not a fan of the humor.  Instead of being funny, I just found it unbelievable (lots of eye rolling).  The petty squabbling and backbiting got on my nerves.  I did not like the main character.  She thought she was better than her relatives (I found her annoying) and had the maturity level of a teenager (most of the time).  Margot’s constant complaints about the town’s coffee got on my nerves (and wondering why she did go out and buy a coffee maker).  Frankie, the mortician, was my favorite character.  She is unique and embraces it (she also loves her job).  The ending is expected and quickly wrapped up (with a nice big bow).  It seemed like the author took every Southern stereotype and shoved them into this story.  Moonshine, thick Southern accents, deep fried everything, and so on.  I did not laugh once while reading the book (my mother thought it was hilarious and claims I have no sense of humor).  Sweet Tea and Sympathy is a predictable Southern romance novel with the wacky factor ramped up.  I will stick with Molly Harper’s vampire novels which I just love.  The next two books in the Southern Eclectic series are Save a Truck, Ride a Redneck and Peachy Flippin' Keen.

I will return tomorrow with my review of Canal Days Calamity by Jamie M. Blair.  It is the second book in A Dog Days Mystery series.  May you have an astonishing day.  Take care and Happy Reading!

The Avid Reader

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