Friday, July 19, 2013

The Story of Sassy Sweetwater by Vera Jane Cook ~ Review & Giveaway

Genre: Southern Fiction/General Fiction
Publication Date: 20th January 2012
Pages: 289
Book Source: Premier Virtual Author Book Tours

Synopsis: After thirteen years on the run Violet McLaughlin returns to Carter’s Crossing, South Carolina, in 1962, with her young daughter, Sassy. The Crossing is right outside of Beaufort and the turmoil of the Civil Rights movement will forever leave its scars on the young and impressionable girl. As Sassy stands before the imposing white farmhouse for the first time, with no knowledge of her history but that the McLaughlin's are her kin, Sassy begins a journey that will tear her apart before it heals her. Growing up among secrets that will forever damage her relationship with her mother, she attempts to make sense of her past. But will her passion for art and her love for Thomas Tierney be enough to sustain her future? Will the puzzles she must solve to discover who she is be worth the journey?

My Thoughts:
I really do love Southern fiction, there's just something about it that speaks to my soul.

The Story of Sassy Sweetwater is a darker story than say Beth Hoffman's Looking For Me, but equally atmospheric. The bigotry and unrest of the Civil Rights movement, the beauty of the McLaughlin's grand home and the surrounding landscape drops you right in the south with all its charm, prejudice and quirky characters.

I think it was the prettiest day I'd ever seen. Mama used to say that some days are downright friendly and that nature was just like a person, either snarling at you like a fierce wind, crapping on you like a storm, or loving you up like the sun.

But be prepared, this dysfunctional family, their heartaches and tragedies sometimes makes for difficult reading. The appalling in-family violence and sexual abuse affected generations of the McLaughlin family and Uncle Liam and Granddaddy Seamus made my skin crawl ... "Uncle Liam was weird as false teeth in a pickle jar." I have to confess I cheered a little when Grandma Edna finally took matters into her own capable hands.

Grandma Edna seemed quite the intimidating character initially, especially from 13 year old Sassy's perspective but I quickly grew fond of the stern matriarch with her soft heart. Dudley and Thomas weren't far behind. 

Sassy's journey is a tumultuous one and I didn't always like her but she's a survivor. And take heart, it may seem like I'm giving something away but believe me you need hope that this girl shaped by the rough hand she was dealt eventually finds true happiness.

Connect with Vera Jane Cook

One ebook copy of The Story of Sassy Sweetwater. So that makes it International! Just leave a relevant comment or question along with your email address.

Extra Entries: 
+ 2 tweet giveaway and leave a link

Giveaway ends 2nd August and winner will be announced on my blog. 
Good luck everyone!


  1. dark can be good, if not too dark. too dark makes me sad

  2. Wow.. this sounds really good ... will have to look into it!!

  3. Thanks for taking part in the tour. I'm glad you enjoyed The Story of Sassy Sweetwater so much! I didn't want it to end!

  4. What is it about Southern fiction that draws us in...I guess cause the setting always feels like a different time or something. So glad you enjoyed this one.

  5. Southern fiction is always a draw for me. I don't know why since I've never lived south of Washington DC and don't think I'd want to!

  6. This one sounds really good. I'm going to add it to my TBR:)

  7. This book sounds like it's got a lot going for it. A compelling read I'd say!!


  8. I love Southern fiction and would love to know about the McLaughlin secrets.

    lag110 at mchsi dot com

  9. Nice book cover. Thank you for a chance to win this book.

  10. I loved your review...and it drew me right in. Put me anywhere during the 60s and I'm there! Eager to jump right in.

    I tweeted:

    I'm at

  11. So glad you enjoyed it! I love Southern fiction too.

  12. Well, good thing I finally stopped by your blog and now I can add this title to my must-read list of Southern fiction! Sorry that I've been absent, what with going up north so often and by the time I get home I don't feel like being on the computer!!!! I'm back now so I will commence to commenting on all of your posts I've missed!

  13. I'm not really familiar with Southern fiction. This would be a good chance to get to know about it. :)


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