Sala’s novel is one of those rare treats that is not only a pleasure to read, but is so enjoyable it becomes difficult to put the book down. An unexpected turn makes the narrative even more entertaining. The kooky neighbors will remind readers of the people in their own small towns and neighborhoods, but the amount of time that Sala devotes to developing them begs for a sequel.

Eleven years ago, LilyAnn Bronte was the undisputed queen of Blessings, Ga. She literally had the crown to prove it after she was awarded the title of Peachy-Keen Queen, and she was always the most beautiful, smart and popular girl in town, who had even landed the star quarterback as a steady boyfriend. Her life was going to be great — but then Randy Joe was shipped off to Iraq and never made it home. LilyAnn hasn’t gotten over it, despite the best efforts of her family, the women she’s friends with at the Curl Up and Dye hair salon and her childhood best friend, Mike. She’s still stuck in the past. But that all changes the day T.J. Lachlan comes to town and brings eerie reminders of Randy Joe with him. And then LilyAnn has a revelation: Maybe it’s time for her to come into the present and open her heart to genuine love and change. (SOURCEBOOKS, Feb., 288 pp., $14.99)
Reviewed by: 
Lauren DuBois