Well, the American South is known for the Southern Belles, their fate and their racism, and all of these aspects are visible in this novel.
We have Mary Poser, a Southern belle, born to a religious family. Her father is a Baptist minister and her mother is such a religious person, that needs her three children to follow God’s rules line by line. Her mother was married right after high school and therefore judges her sister that hasn’t married yet, and her daughters and son for not having followed her footsteps yet. So she is very fond of Jason, Mary’s old boyfriend. Jason is Toby’s best friend. Toby is Mary’s brother and the two young men are on a country music band., whose biggest fan is Mary. But, Jason cheated on Mary and this is why the two of them broke up. Nobody really seems to care about this fact, but they are all willing to overlook
Mary has two friends, Chloe and Alice. Chloe is a gorgeous black woman with sassy attitude and is pursuing a career in acting. While Alice is Maori and has travelled in so many places, unlike Mary who hasn’t been anywhere! The three of them get along very well, even if Mary is always late at their meetings, or if at times it seems that Chloe cares only about herself. On one of those nights that they are out on a gala, supporting Chloe, the girls meet a couple of move producers and directors. One of them is Simha, an Indian director that is dazzled by Mary and the two of them connect instantly. They become fiends very soon and they keep in touch, despite being in different continents.
I wanted to really like this book, and I did, but not as much as I expected. I just could not understand Mary, who was trying to please everyone else, but never herself. She was trying to be the best daughter, the best Christian the best girlfriend to someone that was not supporting her and clearly did not love her. She didn’t really see the flaws on her mother’s behaviors. The woman did not care about her daughter’s happiness. She only cared about her daughter following her standards with respect to God and family. She was such a narrow minded person and a racist. And don’t get me started on Jason. He only cared about Mary when he learned that she met Simha, he cheated on her, let’s not forget that part… He wanted Mary to be on all his performances with the band, even if that meant that she would be all night alone at a noisy bar, waiting for him, just so she could applaud and make other people applaud too. They never went on dates, they never spent time together and this was supposed to be a romantic relationship!
While Simha on the other hand always sent her messages and gifts and took the time, through his busy schedule, to devote to their communication. He even flew back to the US for her. He truly had feelings for her and she for him, but she was always putting obstacles in their path, as she didn’t want to let herself enjoy what they could have.
I don’t know. Maybe it wasn’t the right time for me to read this book, so others may enjoy it more.
Thank you to NetGalley & Angel’s Leap for an advance copy of this book. The views expressed are my personal and honest opinion.