Everyone has secrets but this secret is in the form of a body buried beneath a tree. The residents of Walls of Water, North Carolina are being forced to deal with their secrets. Willa Jackson is learning to accept who she is while acknowledging she never really knew or understood her grandmother or even her father. Her grandmother is in a nursing home suffering from Alzheimer's and her father died a tragic death several years earlier. She always felt that she let them both down but is now learning that these feelings were caused by her own feelings of inadequacy. Just as Willa is learning to cope with who she is and what she wants out of life, Paxton Osgood is learning that she doesn't have to live up to other peoples or even her parents' expectations. Her twin brother Colin is learning that is okay to go home again.
The Peach Keeper appears to be a story of self discovery and acceptance as well as a discovery into the importance of friendship. Willa and Paxton discover just how far two friends are willing to go for one another when learning about their grandmothers' pasts. It is through this process that they learn to cherish one another and the value of true friendship. Sarah Addison Allen has imbued The Peach Keeper with a sense of whimsy and intrigue while providing a captivating reading experience. For those readers that loved Garden Spells, you'll be happy to note that Claire Waverley and her niece Bay make a cameo appearance. For me this was simply a book that I couldn't put down once I started reading. I ignored phone calls (isn’t that why we have voice mail?) just so I could finish reading The Peach Keeper uninterrupted. This is the perfect book for a lazy weekend or evening reading session, but you may want to turn the ringer off your phones so you can enjoy it without interruptions.