Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Saving CeeCee Honeycutt

My book club read Saving CeeCee Honeycutt by Beth Hoffman this month.  I didn't mind reading this book, but there just wasn't a lot of depth to it.  However, whatever this book lacks in depth it tries to make up for in one-liners.  I found several good quotes full of great advice, but even with the good advice I'm not sure I'd read the book again.  This was a clean book with very minimal language.  Plus the southern setting is quite enjoyable.  All in all, I think I'd give this book a 2.5 out of 5 stars.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying Saving CeeCee Honeycutt was a bad book b/c it wasn't; it just wasn't a great book.  It wasn't The Help, where there are fun southern women with depth themselves as well as depth in the story.  Honestly though, if you want a light read that you can finish at the beach then pick this one up.  I didn't mind reading every day, but I wasn't anxious to pick it up either. My biggest conflict with the story was the overall lack of depth in the characters (they had potential and I don't think it was executed well enough) as well as the storyline it self.  The lack of depth in the story really was disappointing b/c there were some deep concepts/topics that could've been explored a bit more.

While reading the book I kept waiting for something to happen; I was waiting for a bigger conflict that never seemed to arise.  It seemed that the more pages I turned the more I continued to read about CeeCee's summer in Savannah; it wasn't a bad summer, it was actually a very good summer.  However, it wasn't written in a way to make an unforgettable summer and story.   

The following book review came from Beth Hoffman's website:

"Twelve-year-old CeeCee is in trouble. For years she’s been the caretaker of her psychotic mother, Camille— the crown-wearing, lipstick-smeared laughingstock of an entire town. Though it’s 1967 and they live in Ohio, Camille believes it’s 1951 and she’s just been crowned the Vidalia Onion Queen of Georgia.

The day CeeCee discovers Camille in the front yard wearing a tattered prom dress and tiara as she blows kisses to passing motorists, she knows her mother has completely flipped. When tragedy strikes, Tootie Caldwell, a previously unknown great-aunt comes to CeeCee’s rescue and whisks her away to Savannah. Within hours of her arrival, CeeCee is catapulted into a perfumed world of prosperity and Southern eccentricities—a world that appears to be run entirely by women.

While Tootie is busy saving Savannah’s endangered historic homes from the wrecking ball, CeeCee encounters a cast of unforgettable, eccentric characters. From the mysterious Thelma Rae Goodpepper, who bathes in an outdoor tub under the watchful eyes of a voyeuristic peacock, to Oletta Jones, the all-knowing household cook, to Violene Hobbs, the loud-mouthed widow who entertains a local police officer in her yellow see-through peignoir, the women of Gaston Street keep CeeCee entertained and enthralled for an entire summer.

But CeeCee’s view of the world is challenged in ways she could have never imagined: there are secrets to keep, injustices to face, and loyalties to uphold. Just as she begins to find her ballast and experiences a sense of belonging, her newfound joy collides with the long-held fear that her mother’s legacy has left her destined for destruction.

Laugh-out-loud funny, at times heartbreaking, and written in a pitch-perfect voice, Saving CeeCee Honeycutt is a spirited Southern tale that explores the intricate frailties and strengths of female relationships while illuminating the journey of a young girl who loses her mother but finds many others."

However, I do want to share a few of those one-liner advice tidbits with you. 
- "Find your fire.  It's what makes life fulfilled and a heart full." pg 101-102
- While talking about friendship, "Cherish the good, and pretend not to notice the harmless rest." pg181
- "Don't grow up too fast, darling.  Age is inevitable, but if you nurture a childlike hear, you'll never ever grow old." pg 221
- "It's what we believe about ourselves that determines how others see us." pg 249
- "It's how we survive the hurts in life that brings us strength and gives us beauty." pg 302 


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