#BookReview: Slightly South of Simple by Kristy Woodson Harvey

slightly south of simpleSummary:

From the next “major voice in Southern fiction” (New York Times bestselling author Elin Hilderbrand) comes the first in an all-new series chronicling the journeys of three sisters and their mother—and a secret from their past that has the potential to tear them apart and reshape their very definition of what it means to be a family.

Caroline Murphy swore she’d never set foot back in the small Southern town of Peachtree Bluff; she was a New York girl born and bred and the worst day of her life was when, in the wake of her father’s death, her mother selfishly forced her to move—during her senior year of high school, no less—back to that hick-infested rat trap where she’d spent her childhood summers. But now that her marriage to a New York high society heir has fallen apart in a very public, very embarrassing fashion, a pregnant Caroline decides to escape the gossipmongers with her nine-year-old daughter and head home to her mother, Ansley.

Ansley has always put her three daughters first, especially when she found out that her late husband, despite what he had always promised, left her with next to nothing. Now the proud owner of a charming waterfront design business and finally standing on her own two feet, Ansley welcomes Caroline and her brood back with open arms. But when her second daughter Sloane, whose military husband is overseas, and youngest daughter and successful actress Emerson join the fray, Ansley begins to feel like the piece of herself she had finally found might be slipping from her grasp. Even more discomfiting, when someone from her past reappears in Ansley’s life, the secret she’s harbored from her daughters their entire lives might finally be forced into the open.

Exploring the powerful bonds between sisters and mothers and daughters, this engaging novel is filled with Southern charm, emotional drama, and plenty of heart.


What a read. I love that we got a POV from Ansley and then her daughter, Caroline. While there was two other daughters that at first I expected their POV to pop in, I think we got just enough from Caroline and it wasn’t overwhelming or too cluttered at all. The setting of Peachtree Bluff is a wonderful fictional town and the descriptions made me feel like I’ve been there as well. The plot is incredibly intriguing and thought-provoking. Ansley’s back story had me raising my eyebrows, Caroline’s marital situation gave me all kinds of feelings, and both Emerson and Sloane had interesting lives and sub plots as well. I really hope we get a follow up story from perhaps Sloane’s POV next time. Everything was going swimmingly for me and this novel… until the end. I felt like it ended so abruptly but I did see this is the first book in the Peachtree Bluff series so…then it redeemed itself again! I can’t tell you how relieved I was to find that out! I will eagerly be awaiting book 2, and highly recommend you check this one out!

5 stars