Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Release Date: August 5, 2014
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, YA
Source: Received in exchange for review
Goodreads | Purchase
In Magnolia Branch, Mississippi, the Cafferty and Marsden families are southern royalty. Neighbors since the Civil War, the families have shared vacations, holidays, backyard barbecues, and the overwhelming desire to unite their two clans by marriage. So when a baby boy and girl were born to the families at the same time, the perfect opportunity seemed to have finally arrived.
Jemma Cafferty and Ryder Marsden have no intention of giving in to their parents’ wishes. They’re only seventeen, for goodness’ sake, not to mention that one little problem: They hate each other! Jemma can’t stand Ryder’s nauseating golden-boy persona, and Ryder would like nothing better than to pretend stubborn Jemma doesn’t exist.
But when a violent storm ravages Magnolia Branch, it unearths Jemma’s and Ryder’s true feelings for each other as the two discover that the line between love and hate may be thin enough to risk crossing over.
Magnolia was exactly what I needed: light, fun and undeniably cute. I saw this one on Edelweiss ages ago, but I quickly looked past it because I wasn’t so sure about it at first. But then the reviews started rolling in and I was absolutely certain that I needed this book in my life. And I was right. I totally did because this book rocked my socks off.
Magnolia has been described as a reverse Romeo and Juliet story. The families are basically stuck together with super glue as they do pretty much everything together, but the teenagers—Jemma and Ryder hate each other’s guts. The two family’s history dates all the way back to the Civil War, when a Cafferty saved a Marsden’s life. Ever since, the two families have been trying to unite. And when Jemma and Ryder are born in the same year, they see their opportunity—they plan to marry them. But of course, Jemma and Ryder, now both 17, hate the idea. They want nothing to do with each other.
Jemma’s narration was easy to love, it’s light and engaging and you can really feel her personality jump off the page. She’s are self-able young woman—she can knit AND shoot, so you don’t wanna mess with her. As for Ryder, I felt that he was just a little too perfect. He’s the top student in his class, he’s the star quarterback, he can play piano like no one else’s business and is really good looking. I’m sorry, but I just find that a little too hard to imagine. (Even though at the time I was like SWOOOOOON.) But, kudos to the author, she still makes her characters three-dimensional and have a lot of depth. These characters really grow onto you, and really quickly too.
Jemma and Ryder’s relationship were written very realistically. It wasn’t too fast or unbelievable, and the chemistry is real. I think I might have loved their relationship more at the beginning because of the banter and how they would try to hide their feelings for one and another—I don’t know why but I do just love watching characters suffer like this. MWAHAHA. That said, the romance was one that I loved as well, even though it got a little corny and too perfect towards the end.
The tornado aspect was also pretty darn awesome. I haven’t read a book where the characters try to survive the tornado before (though I’ve read one that was trying to survive the aftermath—Torn Away by Jennifer Brown) and it was a really gratifying experience. I loved the intensity of the setting, and it was really well written and the author doesn’t skimp over the details.
An all round excellent read, Magnolia was everything that I expected and left me fully satisfied with the fantastic characters and adorable romance. READ THIS, you’ll want it.
~Thank you Simon and Schuster for sending me this copy!~
Latest posts by Melanie (see all)
- Giveaway: The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare - February 14, 2016
- Midnight Blogging 101: The Thing About ARCs - January 16, 2016
- YA Midnight Reads is looking for a new co-blogger! - January 9, 2016
- Mel’s 2016 Resolutions (That Hopefully Will Last the Year) - January 7, 2016