We’re winding down the summer season. Kids are heading back to school, and this week there’s been just the hint of Fall crispness in the air. Such a relief from the summer heat and humidity that we’ve had.
I hope everyone has had a great summer. I haven’t had the chance to take a trip to the beach this year. But the wonderful thing about books is that they can transport you to any location in the world (or out of this world and into another). So, this past month, I took a little trip to a lovely place called “Chapel Springs.” It’s a made-up town set in the North Georgia mountains. The town is a tourist spot because of it’s beautiful lake and the healing waters the “springs” provide. Not to mention the fishing.
I met Ane about four years ago when I was just starting this writing journey. She invited me to visit the local ACFW chapter meeting. I did and quickly joined the group. I’ve learned so much, and much of it from Ane. She’s been in the business a while and knows pretty much everyone. She’s quick with a smile, a funny story, a hug, and plenty of advice for newbie writers.
This is the first time I had a chance to read her work, and I really enjoyed it. It’s quite a departure from my usual genre reads and a bit difficult to pinpoint exactly. Ane calls it “Southern Fried Fiction,” and that is an apt description.
There is humor, drama, intrigue, and romance all rolled into one enjoyable read. The story line covers real life, heavy, family issues, all while supplying side-splitting laughs and a few poignant tears.
The characters are well-written, realistic, and relatable – even though I’m nowhere near their age or in the same life stage. But best friends Claire and Patsy have moved into a permanent place in my heart.
Claire reminds me of a cross between Lucille Ball and Anne of Green Gables, always out for an adventure, but usually ending up in some sort of “scrape.” But even when her pride (and sometimes her hair do) takes a hit, she has the love of her family and her loyal best friend by her side to see her through it.
I feel like I’ve just been on vacation to Chapel Springs and met lots of quirky new friends that I hope to get to spend more time with. As there are three other books in this series, I should have plenty of chances to visit Chapel Springs again.
Now, it’s your turn. What’s a favorite setting you enjoy reading about? Do you prefer to read about places you’ve been, you want to visit, or somewhere you will never go (like C.S. Lewis’ Narnia or Tolkien’s Middle Earth)? Leave a comment below to join the conversation.