Lowcountry Summer

Lowcountry Summer

3.3 168
by Dorothea Benton Frank, Robin Miles
     
 

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Dorothea Benton Frank is a native of the South whose novels vividly capture the wild beauty, laid-back atmosphere, earthy characters, and charming eccentricities of life in South Carolina's Lowcountry. Written with compelling honesty and emotional depth, her stories have touched readers from coast to coast, and propelled her to the top ranks of bestsellerdom

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Overview

Dorothea Benton Frank is a native of the South whose novels vividly capture the wild beauty, laid-back atmosphere, earthy characters, and charming eccentricities of life in South Carolina's Lowcountry. Written with compelling honesty and emotional depth, her stories have touched readers from coast to coast, and propelled her to the top ranks of bestsellerdom nationwide.

Now this remarkable writer revisits some of her most unforgettable characters in this enchanting new story sure to make you laugh and cry. Return with her to Tall Pines Plantation in this long-awaited sequel to her beloved bestseller Plantation. . . .

When Caroline Wimbley Levine returned to Tall Pines Plantation, she never expected to make peace with long-buried truths about herself and her family. The Queen of Tall Pines, her late mother, was a force of nature, but now she is gone, leaving Caroline and the rest of the family uncertain of who will take her place.

In the lush South Carolina countryside, old hurts, betrayals, and dark secrets will surface, and a new generation will rise along the banks of the mighty Edisto River.

Wonderfully evocative, infused with humor and poignancy, and rich with the lyrical cadences of the South, Lowcountry Summer is vintage Dorothea Benton Frank, a deeply moving novel you'll want to savor and share.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Here’s one for the Southern gals as well as Yankees who appreciate Frank’s signature mix of sass, sex, and gargantuan personalities. In this long-time-coming sequel to Plantation, opinionated and family-centric Caroline Wimbly Levine has just turned 47, but she’s less concerned with advancing middle age than she is with son Eric shacking up with an older single mom. She’s also dealing with a drunk and disorderly sister-in-law, Frances Mae; four nieces from hell; grieving brother Tripp; a pig-farmer boyfriend with a weak heart; and a serious crush on the local sheriff. Then there’s Caroline’s dead-but-not-forgotten mother, Miss Lavinia, whose presence both guides and troubles Caroline as she tries to keep her unruly family intact and out of jail. With a sizable cast of minor characters with major attitude, Frank lovingly mixes a brew of personalities who deliver nonstop clashes, mysteries, meltdowns, and commentaries; below the always funny theatrics, however, is a compelling saga of loss and acceptance. When Frank nails it, she really nails it, and she does so here. (June)
Cassandra King
“Lowcountry Summer has it all: a sassy, lovable narrator; great, believable characters; laugh-out-loud lines; page-turning action; and surprising plot twists. in other words, it’s Dorothea Benton Frank at her best!”
Kathryn Stockett
“Seriously hilarious. LOWCOUNTRY SUMMER is also an incredibly poignant story of the relationship between a brother and sister. As only she can, Dorothea Benton Frank shows how we can survive loss, and explores the strong emotions home and family inspire. Get ready to laugh and cry.”
Kirkus Reviews
More folksy love, marriage and magic in Frank's (Return to Sullivan's Island, 2010, etc.) winning book. Caroline Wimbley Levine is at loose ends. The daughter of Wimbley matriarch, Miss Lavinia, she has returned to Tall Pines Plantation to take charge of the family home and, apparently, the lives of her relatives. The lowcountry of South Carolina may have limited romantic possibilities-neither of Caroline's major beaus (a barbecue chef and a local cop) tempt her to remarry-but its limited social circle is full of complications. The major one is her brother Trip's troubled separation from the falling-down drunk Frances Mae, a woman both Caroline and her mother had disapproved of from the start not because "she was a low class red neck slut from nowhere" but because "she was greedy, jealous, small-minded, petty and mean-spirited." The main conflict begins when Frances Mae crashes her car with her young daughter as a passenger, forcing Caroline-and an unwilling Trip-to take action. But as Caroline tries to channel Miss Lavinia's voice, she tends to hear only the old prejudices. While Frances Mae, a woman whose unrefined accent is made clear through her slurred protestations of "I love yew" when the extended family enacts an intervention, is hardly sympathetic, Caroline has a few lessons to learn about tolerance and commitment, too. Joined and amply supported by Frank's usual colorful lowcountry crew-particularly the ancient Miss Sweetie and the magical Millie Smoak-Caroline makes it through this particularly bumpy summer a little wiser and a lot happier. Although a particularly providential accident is necessary to bring about the usual happy ending, this chatty first-person tale of friendship, love and toothsome Southern food shares the appeal of its predecessors. Family complications and Southern charm bolster a proven formula. Reading group guide online. Author tour to Atlanta, Charleston, S.C., Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami, Raleigh-Durham, San Diego, Seattle, Tulsa.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780062102829
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
03/29/2011
Series:
Lowcountry Tales Series
Sales rank:
907,750
Product dimensions:
5.30(w) x 5.80(h) x 1.50(d)

What People are saying about this

Cassandra King

“Lowcountry Summer has it all: a sassy, lovable narrator; great, believable characters; laugh-out-loud lines; page-turning action; and surprising plot twists. in other words, it’s Dorothea Benton Frank at her best!”

Kathryn Stockett

“Seriously hilarious. LOWCOUNTRY SUMMER is also an incredibly poignant story of the relationship between a brother and sister. As only she can, Dorothea Benton Frank shows how we can survive loss, and explores the strong emotions home and family inspire. Get ready to laugh and cry.”

Meet the Author

New York Times bestselling author Dorothea Benton Frank was born and raised on Sullivans Island, South Carolina. She divides her time between the New York area and the Lowcountry.

Brief Biography

Hometown:
New Jersey and Sullivan's Island, South Carolina
Place of Birth:
Sullivan's Island, South Carolina
Website:
http://www.dotfrank.com

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Lowcountry Summer 3.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 168 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is what I refer to as a filler book-one written to flesh out the author's bank account while awaiting another story line to come to mind. I have always enjoyed the author's other books, but I feel she just tried to hard with this one.
sharynVA More than 1 year ago
While Caroline seems bent on saving everyone else, she is fairly judgmental and certainly seems unable to relinquish control. Her obviouly cheating brother comes off as a hero even though he left his drunken wife with their four daughters for his new girlfriend. Appearences seem to rule her life. She seems to be a bit of a hypocrite with her own life. The bad ones are certainly bad while the good characters seem to be wonderful despite their faults, incuding hers. Not at all a favorite book.
Dianne57 More than 1 year ago
"Lowcountry Summer" by Dorothea Benton Frank is the long awaited sequel to "Plantation". It opens about ten years after the events of "Plantation". And I would recommend that you take the time to read "Plantation" to better understand the lives of Caroline Wimbley Levine, her mother Miss Lavinia her nemesis Frances Mae, her brother Trip and assorted other important secondary characters. This is a lushly written novel depicting a family of what I came to see were southern snobs and know-it alls. Caroline just always seems to know what's best for everyone and has no compunction about doing something about it; whether anyone actually WANTS the help or not. She may have been written as a 'real' person, but she was a very unsympathetic person, with absolutely no empathy nor heart. I found her to be truly cold- hearted and subtly conniving and manipulative and by the end of the book I was rooting for Frances-Mae. Oddly enough the other characters except for her son and the characters that you are supposed to hate, have all been written as if they have no back-bone or brains of their own. Character development is very minimal and painful to watch, unfortunately, and whatever action that does take place is contrived and predictable. I understand that not all women protagonists have to be written as "good" girls but some of this just went beyond the pale for me. Had I heard mention another word about Yankee accents and how unpleasant they are I may have thrown the book out of the window. Of course I understand that this is a truly Southern book but I'd hate to think that this is what the entire south feels about the other 3/4 of the country. Unfortunately, while I adored "Plantation" I really disliked "Lowcountry Summer". A great disappointment for me since we've waited so long for this book and I had such high hopes
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this author and could not wait to read this book especially since it was the sequel to "Plantation". I was so disappointed! First, there is nothing summer about this book. Without giving anything away, it centers around an accident. One chapter Caroline is a complete stuck up snob, the next a loving aunt and mom, the next chapter she is acting slutty, and then she is a busy body telling everyone how to act. It made me crazy! The story was so drawn out but I felt that something was missing. I can't say anything else except that this book left me wondering what was Ms. Frank thinking when she wrote it?
whiteoak More than 1 year ago
I had so looked forward to this book, but was ready to give up on it almost immediately. Every character was too overblown. Sad to say, I was totally disappointed.
emmatess More than 1 year ago
As a fan of Ms. Frank's previous books, I was very disappointed with Lowcountry Summer. The characters, particularly the narrator, Caroline, are unsympathetic and annoying. The plot is predictable and the attempts at humor are just not funny.
harstan More than 1 year ago
In 2007 at Tall Pines, the family gathered to celebrate Caroline Wimbly Levine's forty-seventh birthday. Caroline has no problem with closing in on fifty as her focus on the family remains first and foremost in her mind. Her only son Eric (from the marriage with that English pig) is attending college at the University of South Carolina less than an hour drive away from home, but that could be on the other side of the Atlantic for how often he comes home. Caroline rationalizes that he probably feels freedom from her and his horde of other adult supervisors. His mom worries about him because he is living with an older woman and her child. Caroline struggles with the rest of her family members at the gala. Her sister-in-law Frances Mae becomes drunk. Her nieces except perhaps the oldest Amelia must be adopted as they cannot share even partially her DNA as she considers them escaped convicts. Her brother Tripp has personal issues of a sexual kind. However, it is the family's late matriarch the recently departed Miss Lavinia who still from beyond controls the rowdy horde through Caroline. This entertaining Southern Fried family saga returns readers to the Plantation for a Lowcountry Summer jamboree. The cast is solid but it is Caroline who wryly holds the plot together with her observation on others and her wit. Fans will enjoy the return as the child becomes the adult with Caroline having learned Miss Lavinia's life lessons. Harriet Klausner
Bamboo555 More than 1 year ago
Like many other readers, I am a big fan of DBF and have read all her books, several of them twice. Being that Plantation is my favorite, I was very much looking forward to the sequel. After reading to just page 73, I was bored. I couldn't connect with or care about ANY of the characters so I'm not wasting my time finishing it. Not once did I smile or laugh during these first few chapters. Very unfortunate since with the other books, I couldn't turn the pages fast enough. Please, no more sequels. Stick to writing fresh, new stories.
American-Patriot More than 1 year ago
I have read all DBF's books; couldn't wait for another to come out. However, I was a bit disappointed this time. It was good, but just not AS good as her previous ones, in my opinion. Hard to pinpoint just why, but it just wasn't worth all my anticipation. Maybe it's just been too long since I've read her books because of the lapse of time, but I was disappointed.
mmoore More than 1 year ago
Terrible, terrible, terrible. Did the author even reread her notes from the first book, Plantation? Whatever happened to the love of her life, Jack Taylor....we only hear mention of him at the end of the book and he's married to a character who's never been mentioned. No explanation of how their relationship ended. Language changes were made which "dumbed-down" characters, and Caroline went from an intelligent, strong, southern woman, to a "bless her heart," hormonal, imp...seriously, what happened to this great character? I read these books one after the other and was unbelievably dissappointed. Ms. Frank, please don't write a sequel just because your fans want one, write one because you have a great story like you had the first time around.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was so excited to read this book while relaxing on the beach at Wild Dunes. I really did not connect with the characters, more importantly, I suppose, I didn't like them very much. I have really enjoyed books by this author in the past, so I hope the next book has characters that I care about what happens to.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Narraration of this book is excellent. I listen to books on CD/Ipod on my way to and from work to help the commute move faster. I didn't want to leave my car once I got to my destination! My southern mother came back alive in this book... lots of laughs and some tears too!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I couldn't really connect with the characters in this one. She is one of my favorite authors, but I found this book difficult to stick with. Plantation or Full of Grace are much more satisfying reads.
quaintinns More than 1 year ago
Full of southern gals with a mixture of sex, sass, and nutty personalities. Caroline is approaching 47 and concerned about her son Eric shacking up with an older single mom. In addition, she is dealing with the drama of her brother’s (Tripp) family (sister in law Frances Mae) who is a drunk and her four nieces who drive her nuts. Of course, Miss Lavinia her dead mother always appears in spirit to guide her as well as she is falling in love with the local sheriff. With the death of Rusty (Trip’s girlfriend) everyone comes together as best they can in this dysfunctional family full of humor and sarcasm. Robin Miles did a great job on the audio as she has the southern wit to play the part perfectly.
JaneLovesReading More than 1 year ago
I've read most of this author's books and enjoyed them all but this one is awful. All of the characters are annoying and do nothing but whine. Don't waste your time or money.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
BabsNY More than 1 year ago
Enjoy all her writings. Haven't had time to hear this one. I am certain it will be enjoyable,
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I don't know why this book is getting so many bad reviews. I started reading Ms. Frank's books about six months ago, and love everyone of them. If I like an author, I try to read all of their books in the order they were written. After reading the reviews, I was a little skeptical about reading this one. However, in sticking to my "rules" about read in order, I am so glad I did. I could not put it down in the anticipation of what was going to happen to Franis Mae, and the girls. Read it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
great book, love all of Benton Franks about Charleston and the surrounding area. You need to read the previous books in the series to really appreciate the story though.
WeezieFan More than 1 year ago
I usually love Dorothea Benton Frank. Shem Creek in particular is a favorite of mine and I have read it several times. This book, however -- Godawful!! Just awful. I found myself disliking the characters that were supposed to be sympathetic - Caroline and Rusty. I was rooting for Frances Mae by the end. Plantation was a really enjoyable book, and I am not sure how Caroline went from the character she was in that book to an uppity, judgemental snob in the sequel. Eric's occasionally mentioned romance is another dumb story line. Please, please, DBF -- if you must write sequels, write with consistent characters and accurate storylines. I mean really...supposedly Rusty and Trip have now been together for ten years, but Chloe is seven? Wasn't there an editor? The book gets two stars for its descriptions of the low country,of fabulous food and parties, and of course, for Millie. Otherwise, read or reread one of DBFs excellent books.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This novel picks a few years after Plantation dropped off. I enjoyed it a lot, although it was somewhat sadder than what I'm used to from this author.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago