Author Guest Post
The Story Behind Palmetto Moon
If I could wish ANYTHING for you, other than unlimited good health and happiness, it would be to experience that ethereal place I write from. It’s a place I learned to trust implicitly a long time ago.
With Palmetto Moon, I wrote about Round O, South Carolina as if I knew it like the back of my hand. I’d never been there before and had only driven through Walterboro, another town in the book, on the way to Edisto Island over thirty years ago. So, before I turned the Palmetto Moon manuscript into my editor, last summer, I decided I should visit to make sure I got the places right.
I was pleasantly surprised and then shocked at one of those ethereal moments. Dana and Bonita Cheney, the nice couple from the Colleton County Historical Society who showed me around Walterboro, offered to show me Round O. To be honest, with the majority of the story taking place there, and having never been there, I was more than a little nervous.
I’d sent Dana and Bonita a synopsis of Palmetto Moon, that mentioned Miss Mamie’s Boarding House. When we got to Round O, which really is a crossroads community (for those of you who don’t know what that is, it’s a crossroads with a few houses, maybe a church, a little store,) Dana asked me if I’d like to see Miss Mamie’s Boarding House.
There on the corner was a dilapidated two-story clapboard home that very well could have been Vada’s home in 1947. I was amazed. Then he asked me if I wanted to see what it looked like in 1947. He eased down the road about 100 feet and there was the EXACT house I’d pictured when I was writing the book. I know this picture is a little cockeyed but I was completely stunned.
A few weeks later, I approached Dick Elliott, the owner of Maverick Southern Kitchens, and nationally renowned SNOB in Charleston about contributing recipes for the book. I wanted to use them in lieu of Reader Questions. Turns out the executive chef’s name at SNOB is Frank Lee, and my hero’s name is Frank Darling. Coincidence? Maybe, but I’m tagging it as a gift from the ether.
About The Author
Almost everything she learned about writing, she learned from her grandpa, an oral storyteller, who was a master teacher of pacing and sensory detail. He held court under an old mimosa tree on the family farm, and people used to come from all around to hear him tell stories about growing up in rural Georgia and share his unique take on the world.
As a stay-at-home mom, Kim started writing, grabbing snip-its of time in the car rider line or on the bleachers at swim practice. After her kids left the nest, she started submitting her work, sold her first novel at 53, and has been writing like crazy ever since.
Thanks to the lessons she learned under that mimosa tree, her books are well reviewed and, according to RT Book Reviews, feel like they’re being told across a kitchen table. She is the author of The Wisdom of Hair from Berkley, Steal Me, Cowboy and Sweet Home Carolina from Tule, and Palmetto Moon, also from Berkley 8/5/14. While her heart is always in the Lowcountry of South Carolina, she lives in Charlotte and has a heart for hairstylist, librarians, and book junkies like herself.
Palmetto Moon by Kim Boykin
Book 1: Lowcountry Series
Publisher: Berkley / Penguin Group
Publication Date: August 5, 2014
Format: Paperback - 320 pages
Kindle - 1456 KB
Nook - 2 MB
Genre: Southern Women's Fiction / Historical Fiction
BUY THE BOOK: Palmetto Moon
Disclaimer: I received a copy of the book from the author / publisher in exchange for my honest review and participation in a virtual book tour event hosted by Pump Up Your Book Tours.
June, 1947. Charleston is poised to celebrate the biggest wedding in high-society history, the joining of two of the oldest families in the city. Except the bride is nowhere to be found…
Unlike the rest of the debs she grew up with, Vada Hadley doesn’t see marrying Justin McLeod as a blessing—she sees it as a life sentence. So when she finds herself one day away from a wedding she doesn’t want, she’s left with no choice but to run away from the future her parents have so carefully planned for her.
In Round O, South Carolina, Vada finds independence in the unexpected friendships she forms at the boarding house where she stays, and a quiet yet fulfilling courtship with the local diner owner, Frank Darling. For the first time in her life, she finally feels like she’s where she’s meant to be. But when her dear friend Darby hunts her down, needing help, Vada will have to confront the life she gave up—and decide where her heart truly belongs.
My Book Review:
Palmetto Moon is a captivating tale about a young wealthy Southern woman who embarks on a journey of self-discovery and independence.
Author Kim Boykin transports the reader back to the Post WWII time period of June 1947 in South Carolina's Lowcountry of Charleston and Round O, where they follow twenty year old Vada Hadley's escape from an archaic arranged marriage on a journey towards self-independence and seeking her own path in life.
On the eve of her old money arranged marriage to a man she didn't love, Vada escapes from her family's Charleston home with the help of her beloved servants Rosa Lee and Desmond, and embarks on a journey of self-discovery fifty miles away in the little crossroads rural town of Round O. Vada's journey to start her life the way she envisioned is filled with innocence, life lessons, determination, new friends, and an unexpected romance.
Palmetto Moon is a delightful Lowcountry tale filled with plenty of Southern charm that easily draws the reader into the engaging story of a young woman's quest to live life on her own means back in a time when a woman's station in life was very different.
As a fan of Southern Fiction and Lowcountry tales in particular, I found myself captivated and drawn into Vada's story by the author's rich description of the setting and the Southern way of life during that time period. Filled with endearing and quirky characters, drama, suspense, a sweet innocent romance, and intriguing twists and turns, I couldn't help but get swept away and lose myself in the story as it unfolded. I would be remiss if I didn't mention that I absolutely loved the mouthwatering recipes that are included at the end of the book!
RATING: 5 STARS
Virtual Book Tour
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