Saturday, June 12, 2010

Book Review: Saving CeeCee Honeycutt by Beth Hoffman

Book Title: Saving CeeCee Honeycutt: a novel
Author: Beth Hoffman
Genre:  Literary Fiction
ISBN: 978-0-670-02139-0
Pages: 306
Source: Local Library





A quick look at the story:

The book is set in the year 1962. Cecilia aka CeeCee is a 12 year old girl living in a small town in Ohio called Willoughby. She has spent most of her childhood taking care of her psychotic mother, Camille while her dad has conveniently chosen the easier path and kept himself away from his family on the pretext of his sales job. One day when Camille dies in an accident, CeeCee's great aunt Tootie arrives and takes her home with her to Savannah, Georgia. The rest of the story is about how CeeCee thrives in an atmosphere filled with people (read as: Aunt Tootie, her housekeeper Oletta and Mrs Odell) who genuinely care for her and shower her with love and affection. 

My Thoughts:


I picked this book from my library after reading rave reviews about it by almost everybody in the blogging world. And I have to agree the book did not disappoint me one bit. Now who doesn't love a nice, feel-good story...  I really really liked it!! 

I agree the story is kind of predictable and does not have much of a surprise element to it but what kept me hooked on to the book was the attention to detail by the author. I loved the way Beth Hoffman has talked about and described each and every character in her story however small their role is, be it the nosey-Miss Hobbs whom everybody detests or the sweet Miss Obee who sneaks marbles in her dress. She has also portrayed relationships beautifully, such as the friendship between Lucia and Rosa Hoffman, the unspoken mother-daughter affection between Oletta and CeeCee.  In addition, Beth Hoffman has also addressed the key issues that existed in the American society at that time such as, racial discrimination, deforestation and protection of one's heritage, in a very subtle way. 

The book has lot of instances wherein Aunt Tootie and Oletta try and instill self-confidence in CeeCee but below, I have mentioned one particular line from the book which distinctly stood out for me:
My aunt's face was so serious I couldn't imagine what she was going to say. She took hold of my hand and looked into my eyes. "It's what we believe about ourselves that determines how others see us." (p.249)

All in all, Saving CeeCee Honeycutt is a heartwarming story and is highly recommended by me both for book clubs as well as for individual book readers. And oh...did I tell you that this book fully justifies the usage of the phrase "Southern Hospitality" !!!

I am already eagerly awaiting Hoffman's next book... In case you are interested, here's the link to her website: http://bethhoffman.net.

Did you get a chance to read this book? Please do feel free to let me know of your thoughts on this book as well as my review...


My take on this book: Highly recommended. Period.

Rating: 

2 comments:

bermudaonion said...

I loved this too - it made me want to go to Savannah!

diaryofaneccentric said...

I'm so glad to see you enjoyed this one as much as I did!

--Anna

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