The Peach Keeper
by Sarah Addison Allen
It’s the dubious distinction of thirty-year-old Willa Jackson to hail from a fine old Southern family of means that met with financial ruin generations ago. The Blue Ridge Madam—built by Willa’s great-great-grandfather during Walls of Water’s heyday, and once the town’s grandest home—has stood for years as a lonely monument to misfortune and scandal. And Willa herself has long strived to build a life beyond the brooding Jackson family shadow. No easy task in a town shaped by years of tradition and the well-marked boundaries of the haves and have-nots.
But Willa has lately learned that an old classmate—socialite do-gooder Paxton Osgood—of the very prominent Osgood family, has restored the Blue Ridge Madam to her former glory, with plans to open a top-flight inn. Maybe, at last, the troubled past can be laid to rest while something new and wonderful rises from its ashes. But what rises instead is a skeleton, found buried beneath the property’s lone peach tree, and certain to drag up dire consequences along with it.
For the bones—those of charismatic traveling salesman Tucker Devlin, who worked his dark charms on Walls of Water seventy-five years ago—are not all that lay hidden out of sight and mind. Long-kept secrets surrounding the troubling remains have also come to light, seemingly heralded by a spate of sudden strange occurrences throughout the town.
Now, thrust together in an unlikely friendship, united by a full-blooded mystery, Willa and Paxton must confront the dangerous passions and tragic betrayals that once bound their families—and uncover truths of the long-dead that have transcended time and defied the grave to touch the hearts and souls of the living.
My Thoughts: Loved this book! The only thing that would have made this book better is if there had been more detail from Georgie and Agatha’s time, and a little more Devlin, but still it’s a fantastic, up all night read! Allen’s books are truly magical, she does, after all, write “magical realism”. While I personally like The Girl Who Chased the Moon, I know other readers didn’t feel it measured up to Garden Spells and The Sugar Queen. The Peach Keeper is closer to the first two books than TGWCtM. I have loved Sarah Addison Allen’s writing from her very first novel, and now that she has four books under her belt I can officially claim her as one of my favorite all time writers. When I give books as gifts, she is one of the authors I love to introduce people to. So… how long until her next book?
Another reason to love this book- Willa’s assistant, Rachel, and her ability to tell things about people through their coffee orders.
The Peach Keeper gets a Midnight Book Rating of: