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Honeysuckle Summer by Sherryl Woods
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Honeysuckle Summer

by Sherryl Woods

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Showing 5 of 5
I've only read one other book in this series--though I was somewhat familiar with the characters, this author doesn't do a great job of reminding you who is who--so there were times that I was stuck trying to remember who a character was and how he or she related to the other characters.

The main female character in this book is Raylene. She is a woman who has come out of an abusive marriage and has confined herself to her friend Sarah's home in a sort of agoraphobia. This book deals with both those topics as well as anorexia in the form of one of the supporting female characters.

Carter, the main male character, comes into Raylene's life when he locates a lost child. He comes in quite judgemental, but as he learns more about Raylene, I think he begins to appreciate her struggles and admire her strength in trying to deal with them. He seems a bit too good to be true in that he seems to have the patience of a saint in dealing with her.

The yo-yoing of the on-again, off-again relationship of Raylene and Carter gets a bit old. How many times is she going to tell him to go away? How many times is he going to keep coming back? I also don't like that the author has her characters sleeping with each other before they're married (Walter and Rory Sue--as well as Carter and Raylene--I couldn't believe one of them proposed sharing a bed to sleep without expecting that they'd end up being intimate!)

The good things: the friendships. Though the original Sweet Magnolias aren't featured as much in this book as in the other one from the series that I read, the second generation of Sweet Magnolias are in full force friendship. It seems most of the town rallies with Raylene to help protect her when her abusive ex-husband is granted parole. Those who care about Carrie are determined to get her help, even if it means she won't talk to them or will shut them out for a time. These are friends who aren't afraid to tell each other the truth, even if the truth doesn't make them popular with the other person.

I also liked that the romance between Raylene and Carter got to develop throughout the book. They got to know each other first and talk about serious issues as friends rather than just rushing headlong into a relationship. I don't agree with Rory Sue's assessment of what constitutes a good relationship--at least not with its entirety. ( )
  JenniferRobb | Aug 24, 2018 |
"You will want to read all Sherryl Woods collection of masterpieces - her old works and new will leave you wanting more! " ( )
  JudithDCollins | Nov 27, 2014 |
I have really enjoyed getting to know all the characters in the Sweet Magnolias series. My boss at work introduced me to this author. I needed someone new to read and so my love for Sherryl Woods stories have developed. She takes you into the small town of Serenity and you feel like you know the place and the people. Now onto the Chesapeake Shores series and I can’t wait. ( )
  librarystep | Jun 26, 2011 |
Sweet Magnolias (7)
  ompublic | Nov 11, 2010 |
[Review of a free advance reader copy.] I have not read any of the previous Sweet Magnolia books, but Honeysuckle Summer managed to stand alone perfectly well.

The heroine is agoraphobic, in part as a reaction to the abuse she suffered from her ex-husband. He's in jail but won't be forever. She's ended up trapped in the house because she has panic attacks if she tries to go out. She can't even go into the garden any more.

Her problem comes to a head when a young boy she's briefly in charge of seizes the moment to run off out of the garden on an adventure. The policeman, Carter, who brings him back initially judges Raylene very harshly. She seems distant and aloof, and hasn't even joined the others in scouring the streets for the little boy.

Following this inauspicious introduction, Raylene and Carter get to see more of each other. He is a decent, caring man: the polar-opposite of her ex-husband. They have to take any potential relationship between them very slowly; it's very difficult for her to trust him, and to believe she's worth the effort he spends on her.

Carter is almost too good to be true (so patient and honourable), but he also comes with strings attached in the form of his two younger sisters whom he is raising. Raylene's character has balance to it. She can hold her own with the other Sweet Magnolias (a group of women friends who all look out for each other). She doesn't let these strong characters in her life push her around, even to the point that she pushes Carter away from her when she thinks it's for the best.

Overall, this was a solid contemporary romance with strong secondary characters/sub-plots. It celebrated small-town life and marriage (to the right people for the right reasons), and working at problems until you resolve them. ( )
  gemmation | Apr 18, 2010 |
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Raylene stood in the kitchen doorway on a day that was surprisingly cool for the first of June.
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Book description
Her devastating marriage behind her, Raylene Hammond is truly thankful for her best friends, the Sweet Magnolias. They’ve taken her in, shielding her from the world. Then she meets sheriff’s deputy Carter Rollins, and suddenly Raylene’s haven no longer feels quite so safe.
Carter understands why Raylene is trapped inside. He’s even taken to bringing the outside world to her. But with two kid sisters to raise, just how much time can he devote to this woman who’s stolen his heart?
Raylene knows Carter is a man worth loving, but she may never be strong enough to accept what he’s offering. How long can she ask him to wait? Maybe they’ll never have more than this one sweet summer.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0778328465, Mass Market Paperback)

Her devastating marriage behind her, Raylene Hammond is truly thankful for her best friends, the Sweet Magnolias. They've taken her in, shielding her from the world. Then she meets sheriff's deputy Carter Rollins, and suddenly Raylene's haven no longer feels quite so safe.

Carter understands why Raylene is trapped inside. He's even taken to bringing the outside world to her. But with two kid sisters to raise, just how much time can he devote to this woman who's stolen his heart?

Raylene knows Carter is a man worth loving, but she may never be strong enough to accept what he's offering. How long can she ask him to wait? Maybe they'll never have more than this one sweet summer.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:11:03 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

"Her devastating marriage behind her, Raylene Hammond is truly thankful for her best friends, the Sweet Magnolias. They've taken her in, shielding her from the world. Then she meets sheriff's deputy Carter Rollins, and suddenly Raylene's haven no longer feels quite so safe. Carter understands why Raylene is trapped inside. He's even taken to bringing the outside world to her. But with two kid sisters to raise, just how much time can he devote to this woman who's stolen his heart? Raylene knows Carter is a man worth loving, but she may never be strong enough to accept what he's offering. How long can she ask him to wait? Maybe they'll never have more than this one sweet summer" -- from publisher's web site.… (more)

» see all 3 descriptions

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Sherryl Woods is a LibraryThing Author, an author who lists their personal library on LibraryThing.

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