Thursday, June 2, 2011

Book Review: The Peach Keeper

Author: Sarah Addison Allen 
Title: The Peach Keeper
Description: Two young women and their grandmothers are caught up in the echoes of the past as secrets hidden for decades are revealed and change their lives. Allen uses magical realism in the same dialect as Alice Hoffman; romance, friendship, and everyday life all have a way of working out as the characters confront themselves and their families’ past.
Plot: Basically an intergenerational story in which the past affects the present even more than most people realize. There were some echoes of Practical Magic (which I read not too long ago).
Characters: I liked both of the main characters, Willa, who tries to make up for her past mistakes by living the “right” kind of life, and Paxton, who controls her life by making lists. Both are engaging, but flawed; they are likeable in spite of their flaws, and through the book they learn some truths about their choices.
Writing style: I think this is the reason I keep coming back to Sarah Addison Allen. She has a wonderful, engaging magical realism style that I just love. The magical realism was less of a plot point in this book than in any of her previous titles, but it didn’t hurt the story any.
Audience: Basically, I am her audience. That is, I read anything she reads, because I just love the way she writes. So, romance with magical realism and small town life are the ingredients of Allen’s books. She reminds me a lot of Alice Hoffman, but I like Allen better.
Wrap-up: Her previous book was a bit of a letdown for me, but The Peach Keepers shows Allen is back in form. 4.5/5*

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