Jun 3, 2014
Save the Date by Mary Kay Andrews
In SAVE THE DATE, Mary Kay Andrews introduces another original character living in Savannah. This time its Cara Kryzik, a florist originally from Ohio. Cara stumbled into owning her own flower shop when the previous owner, and Cara's boss, became ill and practically gave the business to Cara. The place definitely needed some TLC but Cara was up to the challenge and before long, she was the proud owner of Bloomers. Unfortunately, Cara borrowed a bit of money from her military father to get things rolling and now, many months later, he was breathing down her neck for the payback of his investment. The He didn't miss an opportunity to let Cara know how he felt about her business acumen, or lack there of, in his opinion. With her father threatening to pull his financial support, forcing her to move back to Ohio to live with him, Cara is more determined than ever to make this little venture of hers work. She believes her prayers have been answered when she is hired to not only do the flowers but basically plan the entire wedding of one of the wealthiest families around. With the money she'll earn she can make some much needed repairs to the shop and repay her father's loan. The only problem is, the lawyer bride couldn't seem to care less about the wedding plans as she's a workaholic and the overbearing stepmother of the bride is best buddies with a very successful, high-profile florist who recently took up residence in Savannah and is watching Cara's every move. Trying not to feel intimidated, Cara vows to make this wedding the the event of the season.
As if she doesn't have enough to worry about, her trusted employee, Bert, starts acting strangely and ends up quitting and her ex-husband starts lurking around. On top of all that, she meets Jack, a man she initially hates, then loves, then doesn't know what to make of him. Is he just another man who wants to control her? It seems the only one in her life who doesn't question her at all is Poppy, her beloved seven month-old puppy.
I am so pleased to say I loved this book. MKA is so good at developing interesting, original characters and Cara was a welcome addition to the previous Savannah residents she's already created in her earlier novels. Cara is another strong female character who I liked instantly. She's somebody you'd like to sip a glass of wine with. The supporting characters were equally as entertaining. Reading MKA's books always makes me long for a trip to that lovely city. It was interesting that the protagonist, although living in Savannah, wasn't a Southerner at all. I liked the idea of Cara being a transplant and how much she appreciated the old beauty of the city and made it her home.
The story itself was fun and kept my attention the whole way through. SAVE THE DATE is high on my list of Andrews' books. I also liked the mention of Bebe Loudermilk, one of her earliest characters. Mentioning that Cara would be doing the flowers for Bebe's wedding gave a sense of familiarity, after all, Savannah is a small town.
Also present in the book is the clever wit that we've come to expect in MKA's books. Even in a dire situation she can bring out some humor. But its not a forced sense of humor, its the natural way she writes and it makes me feel like I'm visiting old friends. That's what I love about Mary Kay Andrews. I will forever be a fan.
I'd like to thank Meg Walker at Tandem Literary: Publicity & Marketing and John Karle at St. Martin's Press for providing me an advance digital copy so I could brag about how much I enjoyed it today, the publication day! If you enjoy entertaining characters in a genuine southern setting you shouldn't miss this new release. It's the perfect summer read, no matter where you live!
SAVE THE DATE
Author: Mary Kay Andrews (@mkayandrews)
Publisher: St. Martins Press
Publish Date: June 3, 2014