Friday, June 17, 2011

Literary Friday: Salting Roses

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"Money all by itself didn't make folks happy.  Happiness was something that came from having the freedom to be who you really were~ not someone else's version of your ideal self but the deep down you, with all the food and bad mixed up thick."

~my favorite quote from Salting Roses


This week I read Salting Roses by Lorelle Marinello.  This book needs to be on your beach reading list.  It is a fun, easy, entertaining, and touching read. Its theme is also one that resonates with most readers: forgiveness.

Gracie Lynne Calloway was abandoned in a coal bucket on her Uncle Ben's front porch in LA when she was a tiny baby (LA stands for Lower Alabama for my Yankee readers).  The story begins with Gracie's twenty-fifth birthday party where she learns she was actually born Katherine Hammond. Katherine was kidnapped when she was a baby from her Connecticut estate, and she is the heiress to the Hammond fortune: 650 million dollars is now hers! Sam Fontana, the handsome man from Connecticut who is the bearer of this bad news, is also a Yankees fan, horror of all horrors!  Sam is one of the most charming characters I have encountered in some time.  He is utterly adorable as he becomes more and more smitten with Gracie.  Sam rocks Gracie's world, and not just because he works for her Grandmother Kate. Gracie is attracted to Sam despite her poor self, and she does not like it one little bit!

Gracie has other big problems, too.  All of her life she has grieved for the "mother" she thought abandoned her, Rita Calloway.  Obviously, Rita was never her mother, so she must somehow be involved with the kidnapping. Uncle Ben and his roommate, Archie, have reared Gracie the best they could, and now Archie is terminally ill.  Ben is also spending way too much time with the Widow Perkins than is seemly, and Ben's next-door wife, Alice, is getting far too cozy with their church's minister.  To complicate things even further, Gracie learns that she has a younger half sister named Clare.

As the media circus descends on Shady Grove not far ahead of vulturous relatives, Gracie must struggle with family dynamics (both old and new) and choosing the correct path for her life. She must also find it in her heart to forgive those who have kept secrets from her for years.  I like Gracie's character; I was pulling for her to have a fairytale happy ending!  Her romance with Sam is so sweet, and the strings that Gracie's father pulled as their matchmaker is genius.

Salting Roses is not your typical rags to riches story.  The book challenges the reader to evaluate his or her on preconceptions and prejudices concerning those with and without money.  The Alabama setting is also a plus for the story; the reader gets a true sense of place, especially with small town pettiness and hypocrisy.   I truly could relate to most of the characters, whether I liked them or not: I did not find them to be stereotypical, but real. Gracie has a good head on her shoulders, and it was a pleasure seeing her grow from a girl who prefers staying hidden away in the back of a grocery store to a woman who recognizes and boldly embraces her dreams.  The ending also includes a bit of poetic justice which is always nice in literature.

Don't forget to link-up to our What We're Reading Linky Party on Monday!  I will be hosting this month.






What We're Reading


Please click here for the linky party.

Until next time...



Happy reading!
Ricki Jill

17 comments:

  1. Oh, wow, just reading your description of the book had me riveted! I love that quote at the top and the story sounds intriguing. I'm off to see if my library has it right now--thanks, Ricki Jill!

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  2. This sounds like a great read! I will definately add it to my Summer list. Love the quote.

    - The Tablescaper

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  3. this will be on my summer reading list
    sounds good, thanks for this,,

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  4. It will be easy to remember the title. I am intrigued! I'll be on the look out for it. Your review is wonderful!

    XO,
    Jane

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  5. Thanks for the review, I'm always on the lookout for a good read! Gotta love those Southern stories! I hope my library has a copy!

    Sherry @ A Happy Valentine

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  6. This looks like a great read...I will add it to my Book list! Thank you so much for the review!
    Have a wonderful weekend,
    Hugs,
    Donna

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  7. Ooh...I need to make a Summer reading list and add this to it. :)

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  8. This looks like one I may want to pick for our vacation. I lay in bed at night and read after everyone is long asleep. It is my nightly ritual when we are camping.

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  9. OK, so now were talking...This is my kind of book! a little mystery, a little romance and whole lot of money. this sounds like a great read!! By the way, you were right, my bird bench already sold.

    Carol

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  10. This was already on my summer reading list, so I'm glad to see it was a good read. Now if my summer would just begin already.

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  11. Sounds like another good read, Ricki. I am now reading The Help on my i pad. Actually I had 2 daughters visit but the other one left last Sunday but Tina and family stayed longer. I miss them already but we really did have so much fun. Today, we made blueberry smoothies but I had them take all the rest of the blueberries home with them cause my friend wants me to go with her again next week....Christine

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  12. Sounds interest, Ricki, and will add this to my list!

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  13. OoOoO....I'm intrigued! Thanks. :D

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  14. I'll be looking for this one. Thanks for hosting the party; it's my first time linking up.

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  15. Oh and another one that sounds good :)

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  16. Sounds like a great book, (I will get it ASAP) and a well written review. Thanks for sharing.

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  17. Ok! ANOTHER one! I have it added to my list! :)

    Thanks!
    ~Liz

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