Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Book Review: Looking for Me

Looking for Me
Author: Beth Hoffman
Published: May 2013, Pamela Dorman Books


Beth Hoffman’s bestselling debut, Saving CeeCee Honeycutt, won admirers and acclaim with its heartwarming story and cast of unforgettable characters. Now her unique flair for evocative settings and richly drawn Southern personalities shines in her compelling new novel,Looking for Me.

Teddi Overman found her life’s passion for furniture in a broken-down chair left on the side of the road in rural Kentucky. She learns to turn other people’s castoffs into beautifully restored antiques, and eventually finds a way to open her own shop in Charleston. There, Teddi builds a life for herself as unexpected and quirky as the customers who visit her shop.  Though Teddi is surrounded by remarkable friends and finds love in the most surprising way, nothing can alleviate the haunting uncertainty she’s felt in the years since her brother Josh’s mysterious disappearance. When signs emerge that Josh might still be alive, Teddi is drawn home to Kentucky.  It’s a journey that could help her come to terms with her shattered family—and to find herself at last.  But first she must decide what to let go of and what to keep.

Looking for Me brilliantly melds together themes of family, hope, loss, and a mature once-in-a-lifetime kind of love. The result is a tremendously moving story that is destined to make bestselling author Beth Hoffman a novelist to whom readers will return again and again.


I was sent a copy of Looking for Me as a winner of a Goodreads First Reads giveaway from Penguin Canada.

I was beyond thrilled when I received my notification email from Goodreads that I was going to receive an ARC of Looking for Me. After finishing Beth Hoffman's Saving CeeCee Honeycutt, I was even more excited to crack open her latest novel. I was NOT disappointed!

Reading Teddi's story is like a wonderfully refreshing, sunshiney spring day in the park. Everything is moving at just the right pace, you are in no rush to go anywhere, you want to soak in as much as you can while you have the time, and when it's finally over, you hope there is another one coming soon. Hoffman proves that she is a master of mood and story-telling. Without gripping you and pulling you with nonstop, heart-pounding action, she manages to keep you turning the pages because you just feel like you're visiting and catching up with a really good friend.

Once again, Hoffman shows how gorgeously she paints with words. Some of her passages are without comparison:

"Some people run toward life, arms flung wide in anticipation. Others crack open the door and take a one-eyed peek to see what's out there. Then there are those who give up on life long before their heart stops beating-- all used up, worn out, and caved in, yet they wake each morning and shuffle their tired legs through another day. Maybe they're hoping for a change-- a miracle, even-- but runaway dreams and lost years hang heavily on their backs. It's the only coat they know how to wear."

"When it came to house sales, the old clothes were always the saddest-- how limply they hung, moving in the breeze like tired ghosts.'

"But the abrupt end to the blaming and yelling ushered in something far darker-- a silence so thick that we began to suffocate. Words clotted in our throats."

Hoffman's words draw you in, make you nod your head in agreement and understanding, and keep you wanting more. Every now and again she'll throw something at you that makes you stop and say to yourself, "Wow, that's exactly right." There were times that I was reading and was amazed that she was able to so clearly articulate something that I never even realized I had always thought about.

A VERY big thank you to Miz Hoffman for this "book-friend" and putting me in a real good mood, and another thank you to Goodreads and Penguin Canada for the giveaway!

Rating: 5 out of 5

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so, so much for your beautifully written review! I'm delighted that you enjoyed my novel to such a degree that it has earned 5-stars. It's an honor that I don't take lightly.