Welcome to Crickley Creek, where dreams are encouraged—as long as they fit within the proper rules of etiquette.
Sweet Charlotte Sinclair has no idea that “bless your heart” is the same as “screw you”—and she’s about to find out the hard way. After her mother’s death, Charlotte moved from free-wheeling California to her mother’s tiny hometown in the Lowcountry of South Carolina, longing to feel closer to her and searching for closure.
Charlotte loves her status as a popular coffee shop owner and is enjoying her budding romance with local hero Will Rushton more than she’d like to admit. So why is she still struggling to find acceptance within the Crickley Creek community? There’s a secret nestled among the plantation homes and Spanish moss-covered oaks—a truth her mother’s arch-rival will do anything to hide.
And if Charlotte doesn’t learn how to overcome the damage some well-placed gossip can do to her reputation, she might lose everything, including her rose-colored memories of her mother. But is it possible for an outsider to belong in the deep South and still remain true to her own roots?
Titles in the Crickley Creek series include — The Firefly Jar —♥— Blink Twice If You Love Me —♥—
This is an adult 18+ story that may contain language, possible violence, and/or sexual situations geared to an adult audience.
Title: The Firefly Jar
Series: Crickley Creek #1
Author: Laurie Beach
Genre: Contemporary Romance / Women’s Fiction
Published: April 27, 2023
Publisher: Tule Publishing
My Rating: 4.5
I have a friend who grew up in the South, and I know whenever I hear “Well, bless your heart!” come out of her mouth… something or someone is in a heap of trouble. So, I immensely enjoyed the colorful, often hidden Southern meaning, of the phrases used in The Firefly Jar. Really, what a great way to cuss someone out by blessing their little ole heart.
I absolutely fell in love with the community of Crickley Creek. Whether kind souls or those with a darker agenda, each and every character fit into the puzzle that makes up this small town. It’s not easy for an outsider, California loving Charlotte to stand up to the gossip and tightly bound relationships here, but she’s not only relocating forever, building her business, but needs to feel closer to her deceased mother, to understand her better. But there is someone here who would just as quickly ruin her reputation but make sure that she leaves this town with its secrets intact. Not going to happen, for Charlotte is made of stronger stuff than someone thinks.
The Firefly Jar transports the reader to a small town with secrets and hidden meanings behind so much. This story captured my imagination, my curiosity, and keep me involved in it until the final page. There are a few twists along the way, a romance to get off the ground, and understanding the past before Charlotte will have a stronger sense of belonging in Crickley Creek… but what an adventure it was. The dialogue brought this one to life for me as Charlotte learns how to cope with some residents, win over others, and deal with the gossip that has set out to ruin her on purpose. There is so much that each reader should encounter for themselves, but I loved this one and definitely will be watching for the next release in this series.
*I received an e-ARC of this novel from Tule Publishing, and I sincerely thank the author or publishing house for their trust. It is my choice to leave a review giving my personal opinion about this book.*
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