Magnolia Porter has spent the entirety of her twenty-four years satisfying her mother’s guilt. She was the good girl to her trouble making brother, Lucian – the one left behind to hold her mother together after he died. She is an invisible girl in a small town carrying the burden of her family’s loss and pain. Maggie was nobody trying desperately to be somebody.
Cotton MacKenna is the one with the temper. Of the five MacKenna boys, he’s the one most likely to throw the first punch. Never mind all those fights were a decade ago, all in an attempt to save a sweet girl from her bullying older brother. Now, Cotton has grown up, with his own photography business, yet as the fourth in the line of MacKennas, he would only ever be known for his past. Time for a change.
Favorite Quotes: The MacKenna clan was one short of a six-pack of boys… Some people loved them, for their good humor, musicality, and generosity. Others hated the lot of them, for their pranks, talent, and popularity. Mrs. Albright. A horrible old biddy. White blue hair, deep set wrinkles, and an affinity at spreading ignorance. “I am talking to Vincent on Monday, and he'll ask her out, and before you know it they'll have little tattooed kids running around.” “Tattooed kids?” I asked because I couldn't help it. The idea was too funny. “He can't have plain ol' regular kids.” She deadpanned, The silence felt like a real thing, something swimming in the air that I could grab at and come away with evidence in my hands. I had no destination in mind, but whatever I was looking for, I hadn't found it yet. That was the problem with running away, when your only goal was to leave something behind, but never to find something ahead. My Review: I am stunned and awed to realize this masterfully crafted tale was the author’s first book. It was divine storytelling. I was quickly sucked into the Magnolia Porter vortex and there I remained, fully immersed and held fast by this highly skilled writer's mesmerizing prose. Jess B. Moore has mad skills. The writing was evocative, unflinchingly insightful, and keenly observant, while the storylines were well-paced and cunningly honed. But the characters, oh I adored and ached for these deeply flawed characters and felt I knew them all too well. Jess B. Moore is definitely going to the top of my list as a new favorite and “Talent to Watch.”
Jess B. Moore has written not only a good romance but also a great book about self-discovery! Magnolia is twenty-four-years-old, and she has spent most of her life trying to stay under the radar, causing no undue attention to herself or her mother. Her brother, Luke, caused enough pain and embarrassment to both of them before he died. Over the years of trying to stay invisible, she lost herself. Now, she yearns to find out exactly who she is. Cotton comes from a family of five boys. He is the one with the temper, and he found himself in a lot of fights with Magnolia’s brother. He has been labeled a troublemaker, but he isn’t. No one really knew his fights were to help keep Magnolia safe from her bully of a big brother. He has been in love with her almost his entire life. He always “saw” her when no one else did. Cotton did a lot of growing up and is successful in his business. However, his feelings for Magnolia never changed. He has done his best to stay away from her because he knows he has a temper and would never want to scare her. In his mind, she spent too much of her life afraid. When the two see each other one night in town, Cotton realizes this beautiful, shy girl might just actually have feelings for him. He will soon have to face his feelings for her head on or risk losing her forever! Will he let her love all the parts of him, even the dark ones? If he could just allow her to, he could love her and mend the broken pieces in her. Moore did a good job of balancing the romance with the story of Magnolia discovering who she is. I always love when a writer picks a title that perfectly fits what the book is about, and Moore couldn’t have picked a better title. Magnolia always carried an enormous amount of guilt in regards to her mother. She tried so hard to be there for her but felt guilty anytime she made steps to stand on her own to feet. Colton compared her to a sparrow: “They’re said to symbolize good things coming in small packages, and that the loudest voice isn’t always the most powerful.” Those two things perfectly epitomized the story and who Magnolia was. She was always so quiet and tried to be invisible, but she wasn’t to him or his family. They never considered her weak. They always considered her strong, and they always really saw who she was!