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
Best of southern feminine fiction comes alive in this story of a twelve year old girl blossoming in Savannah, Georgia. Cee Cee was in a sad state while living in Ohio. Her out if place, mentally ill, Southern Bell mother was run over by an ice cream, and her father was barely at home anymore. So her Great-Aunt Tootie drive up in her luxury car to take Cee Cee home with her to Savannah.
Cee Cee's life suddenly went from loneliness and neglect to a whirlwind of new friends and an exuberant life with Oletta---Tootie's black housekeeper, and all of Tootie's numerous flamboyant neighbors. Cee Cee's "life book" became filled with many new found experiences, including racism, elaborate southern traditions, and great new friends. She learned to forgive others and accept the "perfectness" of who she could be.
Characters were well developed and wonderfully interesting. Messages were deep, but couched in loads of charm and humor. Difficult situations were eluded to, but we're not dealt with in a heavy handed manner. Terrific read!!
I have a 3 hour commute to work every day so I listen to audiobooks to help with my drive. It's added some happiness to my day (if it's a good book)!
The wonderful women in this unique town and timeframe. Cecilia was saved by these ladies. Theme was beautiful.
I enjoyed Mrs Goodpepper's personality the most.
She is just amazing.
I just hated the father so much.
Tangential, eclectic, avid listener... favorite book is the one currently in ear.
Narrator Jenna Lamia has also read, The Help, Secret Life of Bees and Moon over Manifest... books I really loved. As I started this book I felt it was like a rerun, same plot & voice, different writer... didn't last long. Set in South - yes, but its own delightful cast and story was hard to put down. They save old houses, a hummingbird, an old lady... and never mention saving Ceecee. But as you close the book you realize it has been done.
This book was described as a cross between 'The Help' and 'Steel Magnolias'....it was...in all the wrong ways. This book is told from the viewpoint of cee cee a 12 year old girl. There are attempts to make the reader see the various adult characters in a vivid light but you really just see the world through the eyes of a 12 year old. The relationship between Cee Cee and her maid was utterly ridiculous and unrealistic. It reminds me of a nancy drew book I read as a child. Again I don't recommend this book for anyone over 12 years of age.
This book was a fairly easy read. It had kooky characters, and although it certainly involved difficult issues such as mental illness and parental neglect/absence as well as racism, it never got into it so deeply that it had me reflecting as much as I would hope. Still, the story was nice and I am happy to have read it.
This was a really great listen, although I found myself spacing out from time to time and not being super excited to start listening again, like I get with books I'm really into. It truly is a sweet story and the narrator is perfect for the voice of CeeCee.
what a wonderful read. i was enthralled from the beginning and i am so sad i am done with the book..story of good people and life lessons that left my heart feeling warm. best narration i have heard so far...beautiful voice
This book had me hooked from the very beginning. It is a touching, tender, gently humorous tale of genuine love without regard to skin color or dubious family history. Full of Southern charm and regional color, the characters are brought to life by by Beth Hoffman's gift for creating endearing characters and Jenna Lamia's skillful delivery. I will eagerly be watching for Beth Hoffman's next book!
This book was an attention grabber from beginning to end. I was disappointed to see that there were no more audible books by this author! The story of Cee Cee Honeycutt with her crazy past and her colorful new life in Savanah was rich and full of strong women. This story makes your appreciate all the great women that have touched your life.
The narrator, Jenna Lamia, was excellent!! She makes the characters all come alive, especially Cee Cee.
Jenna Lamia is hands-down the very best narrator. I will listen to anything she narrates and "Saving CeeCee Hunneycutt is certainly worth the read. Hated to hear it end......maybe a sequel?
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