THE AUTHOR: Mary Kay Andrews
I have been experiencing some tough reads lately, so getting to read Mary Kay Andrews’ “Spring Break” was like a breath of fresh air. At a recent launch party, I had the opportunity to meet Andrews and to listen to her speak and read from this, her latest book.
She is a delightful woman who even shared with us that she has lost 60-plus pounds. We of course immediately asked what her secret was, and she told us that she was working with a nutritionist and eating healthy and exercising. Geez, there is never an easy way out, is there?
Andrews shared that she writes approximately one book per year. They are perfect beach-reading material. They are page-turners and tons of fun! Last year’s book, “Summer Rental,” was a great success, just like I know this one will be too.
“Spring Break” introduces you to the Bayless family, the owners of a local Southern cherry-tasting soft drink company named “Quixie.” At the beginning of the book one of the main characters, Annajane, is sitting in the pew at the Passcoe, North Carolina, Episcopal Church, nervously watching as her ex-husband Mason gets married to a petite blond named Celia. You also get to know Celia really well as you read the story. Annajane, however, has come to the wedding to get closure for herself and for her divorce from Mason.
But as the wedding music begins, Annajane begins to perspire. Suddenly she realizes that she may not be over Mason after all, and that she may want him back. The church is packed to the gills, everybody who is anybody is in that church, and there is no way out. So you’ll have to read to learn whether Annajane thinks of anything to stop the wedding, or if Celia and Mason become husband and wife.
Annajane and Mason were married five years earlier, and because Annajane thinks Mason cheated on her, their “happily-ever-after” marriage broke up. But being an adult, Annajane is able to keep her job and to stay on in the marketing department at “Quixie,” the family business, and to see her ex and Celia, a petite bombshell, become involved.
I cannot wait to hear your feedback on Celia, or if she reminds you of anyone you know. Please give me your feedback on anitabook.com after you’ve finished reading. This could get really good!
And if the wedding is halted somehow, you will still have to find out what kind of conniving plan Celia does or does not come up with to get Mason to reset the wedding date. And, of course, Sallie Bayless, Mason’s mother and the matriarch of the Bayless family, adores Celia and for some reason despises Annajane. Sallie is always eloquently dressed to a T, and you will find her playing bridge, having lunch at the club, and hiding a pack of cigarettes deep within her pocketbook.
You’ll also meet Sophie, a precious 5-year-old who is also a Bayless, and you’ll learn how she fits into the family.
Andrews never fails to come through though. There are twists, turns and surprises with each turn of the page.
The book’s setting makes you think of Carrollton, or really of any medium-sized Southern town with locally run family businesses. It is such an easy, light, fun read. You will not want to put it down because you can relate so readily with the characters that they could be you, or at the very least your next door neighbors, or “Quixie” could be just like where you work.
Please note on your calendar that the author, Mary Kay Andrews, will be speaking and reading from “Spring Break” at our Neva Lomason Memorial Library on Sunday, Aug. 19, at 2:30 p.m. She will have books that you can purchase and she will gladly autograph them for you. Please plan on attending. Everyone is invited.
I highly recommend this book as a fun finish for summer and give it “3 tiaras.”
Andrews has a special knack for never giving away the story until the last second. You are constantly amazed at what happens, and never disappointed by the action. This one is a family saga that could easily fill an afternoon slot as a new soap opera, and I’m sure that Mary Kay would be happy to have that happen.
In the meantime, you enjoy this year’s blockbuster, and enjoy looking forward to her next one!
Buice, a Carrollton resident, writes a weekly column for the Times-Georgian. anita of anitabook.com