Secrets Over Sweet Tea appealed to me because of the title. I proudly confess that I am a Southern girl, born and bred. And any book with "Sweet Tea" in the title that is about Southern women and their relationships over the favorite drink of the South sounds like a good book to me.
The story is focuses around two struggling marriages. Grace decides to end her marriage of 10 years after her alcoholic husband is arrested for DUI. Zach's marriage comes to a crisis when his affair is discovered by his wife. Both individuals attend a church pastored by Jackson Newberry and his wife, Scarlett Jo. And so the lives of these individuals begin to cross. And the book's characters learn much about secrets and honesty and opening their hearts to God for healing.
This was one of those books that wasn't always easy to read. There's some heavy stuff here. There is some honesty about facing your secrets. There is pain. There is grief. And there is healing. And healing is sometimes messy.
I admit that there were a few times I wanted to put it down. I've always read fiction as an escape from reality. So I don't typically like fiction reads that are too "heavy." But sometimes there is just too much hope and promise to stop reading. That's how I felt about Grace and Zach's stories.
There was a good bit of reality here. In reality, lives are broken and sometimes painful. But there was also a good story line and some very likable characters- notably the loud, boisterous, obnoxious and totally lovable Scarlett Jo. It made for a very good balance and a very good read.
I give this one 4.5 stars and a PG for content. (There are some thematic elements that may push this one into a PG-13 rating for me- especially if you are considering letting a teen read it.)
Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are entirely my own.