Falling Home by Karen White
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Lately I have been very choosey about ARCs that I agree to read. I find that it is a very narrow road for me, whether I will like a book or not, and I am not the kind of person who enjoys simply saying "I do not like this book," because someone took the time and energy to create the characters and the story and write it. Inevitably there are people who will like it, it's just in that instant, it wasn't me. This is a horrible way to preface this entry, because this is not what happened with this book. I am so very thankful I decided to say yes to reading this book. Technically, Falling Home isn't exactly a new book. It was first published in 2002, but has been reworked and is being republished November 2, 2010.
Falling Home was one of those books I hated to put down. Fortunately [and unfortunately] I got a stomach bug, stayed home from work and had an entire day to lay around reading it, so it wasn't really a problem.
Cassie is returning home to her small hometown in Georgia after 15 years away, returning to a life she has left behind. A life where her younger sister went off and eloped with her first love, and where the small town hustle and bustle has everyone knowing your business. She is reluctant to go back, but her father has suffered a heart attack and is not expected to make it, his dying wish is to have both of his daughters at home with him. According to Cassie, the only thing waiting for her at Walton is her past. What she does not expect to find is a community, a family, a life that she never knew she was missing, and who welcome her home with open arms.
I absolutely fell in love with this book! The characters are beautiful and fun. I did feel like I was reading the book version of Sweet Home Alabama at first because of the 'big-time girl going back to small-town life' story line, but there is so much more to this story about love and life, and learning from your past mistakes, and moving forward from past hurts. The book had me laughing, and crying and wanting to grab my kids and keep them as close to me as possible.
I loved how Karen White was able to create a picture that I could visualize and made me want it for myself. I could just see the old houses, the porch swings, and hear old porch doors slamming against the frame. I wanted to run in a field and catch lightening bugs, and be wrapped up in this community, even with it's downfalls. There were a few times I was actually wishing I was listening to an audio book, just so I could hear Sam's southern accent, which I imagined to be super sexy when he wanted it to be, and ultra-hick when he wanted it to as well. I would have loved to have been able to hear some of Cassie and Sam's verbal battles.
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