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Review: The Book Charmer by Karen Hawkins


The Book Charmer

Karen Hawkins

Sarah Dove is no ordinary bookworm. To her, books have always been more than just objects: they live, they breathe, and sometimes they even speak. When Sarah grows up to become the librarian in her quaint Southern town of Dove Pond, her gift helps place every book in the hands of the perfect reader. Recently, however, the books have been whispering about something out of the ordinary: the arrival of a displaced city girl named Grace Wheeler…more.

My Rating:

Reluctance turns to inclination, and duty to love in the enchanting, candied romance of The Book Charmer by Karen Hawkins. Fans of Sarah Addison Allen and Alice Hoffman will find a new author to follow in this Dove Pond series by best-selling author of historical romance.

As book one, it does an excellent job of setting the stage for all sorts of delightful and magical tidbits that are sure to come our way as the series progresses. Sarah Dove is a most charming character, it’s no wonder she claims the title of ‘book charmer.’ A woman from generations of ‘gifted’ women, the Dove luck is in high demand when The Book Charmer sets off. On the precipice of falling into bankruptcy, a thing far too many delightful small towns suffer from, Sarah Dove has been waiting for a sign, and with a little of her family luck, she’s about to get her hopes (or perhaps her destiny) answered. In rolls Grace Wheeler, a grieving sister who has newly adopted the role of mother to a recalcitrant eight-year-old Daisy. Daughter to Hannah, Grace’s younger sister, this young girl is in need of a steady ship to call home, but Grace is not feeling like she’s capable of steering any ship at the moment. Poor Grace is a woman on the edge, and moving to Dove Pond is a chore, but a necessity, at least until Grace can get her feet back under her.

Sarah has other plans for her though, and as the town unveils its list of quirky characters, scintillating history and demand for a savior, Grace might find herself unwilling to let go of the love she not only finds for the town, but also the love she’s found for herself. Easily, these characters slip into the readers’ memory as if they too have lived years with Aunt Jo and her bulldog Moon Pie, or spent time with neighbors who talk to books, or spot flowers changing colors when two people in love walk by. This is the type of book that reminds us to pause and take note of the good things, however small. The smell of an old book, the hint of a loved ones cologne, or the remembrance of childhood summers on the scent of freshly clipped grass, all coalesce in this most inviting book. Perfect for a summer at a beach cottage, but equally as warming if read by the fire in the dead of winter, The Book Charmer is simply magical.

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