Steel Magnolias meets The Help in this Southern debut novel sparkling with humor, heart, and feminine wisdom.
Twelve-year-old CeeCee Honeycutt is in trouble. For years, she has been the caretaker of her psychotic mother, Camille-the tiara-toting, lipstick-smeared laughingstock of an entire town-a woman trapped in her long-ago moment of glory as the 1951 Vidalia Onion Queen. But when Camille is hit by a truck and killed, CeeCee is left to fend for herself. To the rescue comes her previously unknown great-aunt, Tootie Caldwell.
In her vintage Packard convertible, Tootie whisks CeeCee away to Savannah's perfumed world of prosperity and Southern eccentricity, a world that seems to be run entirely by women. From the exotic Miz Thelma Rae Goodpepper, who bathes in her backyard bathtub and uses garden slugs as her secret weapons, to Tootie's all-knowing housekeeper, Oletta Jones, to Violene Hobbs, who entertains a local police officer in her canary-yellow peignoir, the women of Gaston Street keep CeeCee entertained and enthralled for an entire summer.
Laugh-out-loud funny and deeply touching, Beth Hoffman's sparkling debut is, as Kristin Hannah says, "packed full of Southern charm, strong women, wacky humor, and good old-fashioned heart." It is a novel that explores the indomitable strengths of female friendship and gives us the story of a young girl who loses one mother and finds many others.
©2010 Beth Hoffman; (P)2010 Penguin Audiobooks
When I started listening to this one I had to go back and say, "Wasn't it described as a laugh out loud book"? The beginning was so tragic. My heart ached for Cee Cee. Then she went to Savannah and the laughs begin, not all laughs, but a lot of them. Read by the narrator of The Help, Jenna Lamia has a wondeful voice for this southern settings. All of the rich charachters of the woman around Cee Cee also reminded me of the Help.
wow this was a great read/listen. I have to admit the name drew me in -- but so glad i listened to it. Beth Hoffman writes a great story and Jenna Lamia (who i listened to before) was just wonderful. I hated when it was over. PS loved CeeCee's Aunt.
I love the accents, the characters and the sweet story line that gives us all hope. Where there is love there is hope!!!
Very very well narrated - if you liked "The Help," it's quite similar to that. It makes you laugh out loud in spots, and feel uncomfortable in other spots - great storytelling. The plot line is a bit thin - not as rich and complicated as "The Help" or "Calla Lily Ponder" - but definitely wanted to keep listening.
This is a beautiful book that is wonderfully narrated. I was especially intrigued with the manner that it kept my attention, though it was not an exciting, suspenseful or even romantic sort of plot. It was just a simple story in a glorious setting with adorable characters. At times it was heartbreaking, but at other times it was downright fun. Unlike many other books, I don't think that I'll never forget this one.
If you enjoy about Southern Women- you will like this one. Makes you want to turn on every chance you get
The characters in this book just don't ring true. I have a thing about faux Southern speech and faux Southern characters in literature. This book has both. And little CeeCee is wise beyond her years - unbelievably so. I never was a fan of Designing Women, but that's what this group of characters called to my mind. The book was selected by my book club last year. I got it on audio a number of months ago and began listening - just couldn't continue after the first couple of chapters. Decided I would tough it out - it's a short, sweet book, right?- and finish it before our discussion next month. Still couldn't do it. For me, a waste of time and money. It's hard to understand all the glowing reviews. I figure they must be from folks who never set foot in the South.
I enjoyed the voice of Jenna Lamia more than the story itself. I didn't feel there were any surprises - other than the slug incident - and the story started out sticking to it's voice well early and then the 11/12/13 year old had far to much insight and understanding for her age.
Still a decent listen and it kept me in my garden for longer periods than if I hadn't been listening. :)
One could say my tastes in books are nonsequators because I have no favorite author or genre. I hold over 300 books in my audible library
This book had me captivated for all 10 hrs and 4 minutes of the audio version. Since I have trouble reading with my eyes, I usually do not want to go through the book myself without it being audio, but this book was so good I have downloaded the digital copy for my Ipad (because the print can be blown up) so I can listen to the Narrator and read along.
Saving CeeCee Honeycutt is a book about a young girl from Ohio who is born into a blended Yankee and southern family in the 1950's. CeeCee's mother is from Georgia, an ex pageant queen who on the surface seems like she has lost her nut, her father who is from Ohio is distant and travels so much his character is portrayed very little in the development of the story but has a large impact on the main character.
When we begin this book, Ceecee is a loner who's only friend is an elderly neighbor (Mrs Odell) who has been her sitter since she was an infant. Ceecee has a lack of friends but plenty of onlookers to her life within her small town in Ohio, because of her mothers "eccentricities". But what we find out throughout the development of this plot is that maybe her mom isn't so crazy after all, maybe it is just a true case of being homesick for the south. There is an old saying, you can take the girl out of the south but you cant take the south out of the girl. In this book this saying is screamed from all the pages. It speaks of the southern culture and how the northern people are lacking in the community area of southern culture.
This book has captured a culture better than any other "southern" genre that I have read thus far ever could.
Jenna Lamia has captured the characters in this book in such an amazing way, she is quickly becoming my favorite Narrator for books with southern charm.
This book is great for anyone looking for a light read that has laughter, tears, warm fuzziness, and a lesson in how it really does take a village to raise a child, as well as community is priceless.
Happy reading folks!
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