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Peas, Beans & Corn (Book 2 in The Sovereign…
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Peas, Beans & Corn (Book 2 in The Sovereign Series)

by Jennifer Wixson

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I found this second book in the Sovereign series even better than the first. I still enjoy the writing style and the reflections of the narrator Maggie. I want to know more about her, in fact, and I gather that perhaps I will in the next book, coming out in the spring. Some of the same lovable characters return from the first novel, in addition to a few new characters, mainly Bruce Gilpin, whom, I must confess, I wanted to string up by his little toes a time or two. There are some interesting twists and turns in the story, which I enjoyed. One day I hope to make it to Maine to see a little of the life that the author has shared. ( )
  hobbitprincess | Sep 7, 2014 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Peas, Beans & Corn is a very homespun tale of Bruce and Amber, their budding romance and the quaint characters of Sovereign, Maine. They meet on a bus and fall in love but have to overcome lots of obstacles. He has a dream of reopening the long-defunct local canning factory.

I enjoyed this book but found it a very slow read. Perhaps it was the detailed descriptions of people and places in Sovereign. Perhaps it seemed slow because time moves slowly in sleepy towns.

This book is the second of a four part series. I will return to Sovereign to check out what happens to the rest of the residents. ( )
  goodsew | Sep 24, 2013 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
PEAS, BEANS AND CORN is a sweet, eminently likeable novel about life in the fictional small town of Sovereign, Maine. It's an old-fashioned romance — but don't take "old-fashioned" as a knock. This is a novel about slowing down and deciding what matters to us.

As the story begins, Bruce is returning to his small-town home after a long career in the military. He sits next to a charming young woman — a newcomer to his home town — and starts a conversation. Soon Bruce and Amber are in love and making plans toward building a life together — if they can overcome the many obstacles their small town poses for their relationship. We follow them for several months, through a variety of passionate moments and challenging scenes.

The novel is very cozy and domestic. The text features long scenes of meal preparation and eating, strong evocations of the landscape and weather, and tremendous pride in high-quality local food and farm products (milk, butter, eggs, honey, and of course the peas, beans, and corn of the title). In 2008, Wendy Griswold published REGIONALISM AND THE READING CLASS, an important book about the creation of readers and reading culture. One of her case studies is the literary culture of Maine, which has a strong regional literature and a strong reading culture. PEAS, BEANS AND CORN demonstrates the ideas of regional literature well, in both its authorship and its textual construction. This novel is acutely regional, evoking the sound and sense of place and creating a clear picture of small-town Maine for readers who have never been there. It also contains many features that should appeal specifically to regional readers. Several characters have long genealogies in the place, while others have lived elsewhere and choose Maine as a new home; various characters tell local stories that depend on a sense of place (including local dialect) for their full appreciation; and the scenes of cooking and eating feature locally grown, wholesome, natural food prepared with love and respect. These representations are idealized, but they reflect a tradition Griswold associates with building regional literature and local readership interest.

But even ignoring this element, PEAS, BEANS AND CORN is an unfailingly gentle and positive book. The story moves from one happy coincidence to the next, and the narrator reassures us that little bad can happen when we're surrounded by loving family and good friends. If you enjoy Stuart McLean's Vinyl Cafe stories, you're sure to like this book — and you can go back and read the first volume in this planned four-book series. The third volume should be published in 2014. As the author suggested in her personalized inscription, I did enjoy my visit to Sovereign; you may as well. ( )
  laVermeer | Aug 26, 2013 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Book 2 of The Sovereign Series follows the growing relationship of Amber Johnson and Bruce Gilpin. While still set in small-town Maine, this book takes a slightly different path than the first. Bruce is back in town after retiring from the Maine Army Guardsman and Amber is now running her mother's organic egg business. Their love for each other is steadily blossoming when an unexpected visitor from Bruce's past arrives and almost ruins everything. Add in trying to resurrect a defunct canning factory, finding long lost Emily Dickinson letters, and the trials that come with young love, and you have a book that's hard to put down! It makes me wish that Sovereign, Maine was a real town that i could visit. ( )
  jmach226 | Aug 7, 2013 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
This is a great book. I hard time at first to read it. Once I got into the book I finished it the same day. The characters are great and the plot of the story was wonderful. I would recommend this book to my friends and family. I can't wait to read more from Jennifer Wixson ( )
  tricia35 | Aug 5, 2013 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0963668951, Perfect Paperback)

The romance of a bygone era infuses Book 2 in The Sovereign Series, when Maine Army Guardsman Bruce Gilpin, 35, returns to Sovereign with the secret dream of restarting the town s old sweet corn canning factory. He s encouraged in his mission by the passionate young organic foodie Amber Johnson, 21, who reawakens his youthful heart. The course of their true love becomes muddied by their well-meaning mothers, however, and by the arrival of Bruce s ex-wife Shelia and the handsome corporate attorney Ryan MacDonald, who hits town to rusticate. History pervades this little tale of hummingbird moths and morning mists, horse-drawn sleighs and corn desilkers, and the words of the poet Emily Dickinson, who could have been describing Sovereign when she once wrote: I Went to Heaven -- 'Twas a Small Town.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:20:48 -0400)

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