Happy 4th of July, y’all! Yesterday night we took the boys to the fireworks and met up with friends. Today is glorious. Because we have no plans. Normally I put together some big to-do with friends and neighbors but this year we’ve planned nothing. And I’m kind of excited.
So I’m just going to prep some ribs, cut up some watermelon and make a strawberry crisp for dessert. Maybe use some of that watermelon to make margaritas…I don’t know! What are your plans to celebrate the 4th?
One of the best parts about it being a holiday is that I go to sleep until 8, then wake up and read The Book of Essie, which I loved. And after I read it I was looking at the author’s bio. It’s a debut novel and the author is a doctor in Boston. I mean, I barely have time to write this blog and I have a mish-mash of part-time jobs. I can’t imagine being a doctor and writing a book. And a good one at that. Kudos to Meghan!
From the Publisher:
A debut novel of family, fame, and religion that tells the emotionally stirring, wildly captivating story of the seventeen-year-old daughter of an evangelical preacher, star of the family’s hit reality show, and the secret pregnancy that threatens to blow their entire world apart.
Esther Ann Hicks–Essie–is the youngest child on Six for Hicks, a reality television phenomenon. She’s grown up in the spotlight, both idolized and despised for her family’s fire-and-brimstone brand of faith. When Essie’s mother, Celia, discovers that Essie is pregnant, she arranges an emergency meeting with the show’s producers: Do they sneak Essie out of the country for an abortion? Do they pass the child off as Celia’s? Or do they try to arrange a marriage–and a ratings-blockbuster wedding? Meanwhile, Essie is quietly pairing herself up with Roarke Richards, a senior at her school with a secret of his own to protect. As the newly formed couple attempt to sell their fabricated love story to the media–through exclusive interviews with an infamously conservative reporter named Liberty Bell–Essie finds she has questions of her own: What was the real reason for her older sister leaving home? Who can she trust with the truth about her family? And how much is she willing to sacrifice to win her own freedom?
Immediately upon reading the description of The Book of Essie, the story of a girl trapped in her family’s reality show portraying a wholesome, conservative, Christian family, one thinks of a certain J-named clan who has definitely had their scandals.
So what if that family really had a scandal that could bring them down? Besides just transgressions, which while sensational in the media, eventually went away. What if they had a secret that would ruin them. What would they do? Would they go against all of their strong morals and convictions to save themselves? I’m quite convinced they would, but perhaps I’m too cynical.
What makes the Book of Essie so appealing is that Weir approaches the story from the viewpoint of Essie. And to anyone outside the situation, its crazy to marry Essie off to a local boy just to save face on a pregnancy. But to Essie, it’s fairly normal because she has dealt with these shenanigans her whole life. The book is so subtle and matter-of-fact about what is going on and it feels very believable to me that something similar might go on in real life in a similar family.
The Hicks family has a lot to protect. And it’s devastating how they are willing to sell out their own in the name of money, fame and success. And its sad how true to life it probably is.
The Book of Essie is out now. Pick this one up, you won’t be sorry!