Plot: This is the charming story of a 12-year-old girl during the civil and women's rights era, smack dab in the good old South. CeeCee lives with her mother, whose mind is rapidly deteriorating from psychosis. Her mother, a former pageant girl, increasingly loses her grip on reality which pushes CeeCee to the edge. The lost childhood makes her understandingly bitter, but CeeCee's life changes when her long-lost great aunt shows up at the door. CeeCee receives a second chance at youth, full of exciting adventures, eccentric neighbors and, for the first time in her life, friends.
What I liked: Historical fiction is my favorite genre, if you haven't noticed, and I especially loved this one because it takes place in Georgia during the 1960s--one of my favorite decades in our country's history. It's captivating, being told from the eyes of a wise, but lonely preteen, and I loved reading about her summer escapades. Watching CeeCee have the chance to revert to youthful tendencies was enjoyable--usually characters go the other direction.
What I didn't like: Hmm...There wasn't much I didn't like. For anyone looking for a high-adventure read, this isn't one. This is the kind of book I would want to read on the beach or in an airplane; it's interesting, simple, and it has endearing, well-developed characters.
One of my favorite quotes: "[She] was a remarkable looking woman. Remarkable in that she wasn't what most people would call beautiful. But she oozed a raw femaleness that I was certain made most women uncomfortable and sent men walking into walls. And when she smiled, well, that was magic."
4 out of 5 stars