An orphaned little girl who desperately needs a new home
A couple ready to welcome her with open arms
Friendly neighbors who are always there for each other
A Southern small town where great things happen to good people
Ruby Butterman and her husband, Peanut, cannot have children, but they’re given a second chance at a family when eight-year-old orphan Carlie is left in their care.
It’s a challenge for Carlie to adapt to a new town, a new school, and a new family, and when she gets bullied at school, Ruby and Peanut discover how to step up as parents, and how to make a forever family for their beloved little girl.
Titles in the Blessings, Georgia series include – You and Only You – I’ll Stand by You – Saving Jake – A Piece of My Heart –The Color of Love – Come Back To Me – Forever My Hero – A Rainbow Above Us – The Way Back to You – Once in a Blue Moon – Somebody to Love – The Christmas Wish – The Best of Me –
Title: The Best of Me
Series: Blessings, Georgia #13
Author: Sharon Sala
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published: April 26, 2022
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
My Rating: 4.5 stars
The Best of Me is the thirteenth story, and the final story in the Blessings, Georgia series – and what a story to bring it all to a final close. If you don’t have tissues on hand right now, go, run to the store to make certain you’re prepared for a tear-filled story that will break your heart, heal it back up again, and give you some happy tears by the time you come to the story’s and the series’ ending page. I really don’t think there could be a better title for this one, for in so many ways it is indeed the best of the stories that Sharon Sala has given us all in this charming, Southern town where everyone knows not only your name but your heart as well.
Carlie and her mom arrived in Blessings minutes before her mom would collapse and died. Carlie, at the tender yet wise age of almost 8 has been tending to her ailing mother for the last few years. They made this final journey together to Blessings, Georgia as one vital woman who had touched Carlie’s mom’s life lived here… and into whose care Carlie would go as Ruby and her husband, Peanut, are Carlie’s new guardians and eventual adoptive parents. This might have come as a surprise to Ruby but those who have been here for the earlier stories know that Ruby’s heart is huge, and she couldn’t have had a better gift than Carlie to look after – especially as Ruby never had children of her own to love and guide through life.
While there is a smaller romantic story here… this is Carlie’s story in so many important ways. She’s lost her mother, she’s living with strangers in an unknown town, meeting people who mean well but are a tad overwhelming. She’s in a new school where she is the subject of bullying – and where she meets her own champion in the form of young Melvin Lee. (someday in the future I hope we get a return to Blessings, Georgia novella, maybe at Christmas where we find these two as loving adults about to begin another adventure together in love)
The Best of Me is emotional, tender, uplifting, and proof that life holds so much more than we ever thought possible when we simply wait and accept when the blessing comes along. We’ll get to run into several familiar faces, share the anger at Carlie’s bully, and the sadness Carlie holds as she slowly begins to let others into her life. This is one brave little girl, and you will fall in love with her quite easily. I’m going to miss this series, I’ve always looked forward to the next visit to one of my favorite fictional towns. But, now we get to see what new adventure is in store for us next. All series eventually come to an end – and what an emotional, loving way to say goodbye to the folks of Blessings, Georgia.
*I received an e-ARC of this novel from the publisher via NetGalley. That does not change what I think of this story. It is my choice to leave a review giving my personal opinion about this book.*
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