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Sweet Magnolias Books In Order

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Publication Order of Sweet Magnolias Books

Stealing Home (2007)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Slice of Heaven (2007)Description / Buy at Amazon
Feels Like Family (2007)Description / Buy at Amazon
Welcome to Serenity (2007)Description / Buy at Amazon
Home in Carolina (2010)Description / Buy at Amazon
Sweet Tea at Sunrise (2010)Description / Buy at Amazon
Honeysuckle Summer (2010)Description / Buy at Amazon
Midnight Promises (2012)Description / Buy at Amazon
Catching Fireflies (2012)Description / Buy at Amazon
Where Azaleas Bloom (2012)Description / Buy at Amazon
Swan Point (2014)Description / Buy at Amazon

She likes traveling – not only in the south of France, or for the sake of visiting the Greek Isles, or the Irish countryside. She travels in her imagination and secret worlds, too. She believes that romantic love belongs to women. Of all ages. And she passionately endeavors to write in the romance genre, as well as in other genres and styles. She released her first romance novels using the names Alexandra Kirk and Suzanne Sherrill as pseudonyms. She abandoned the pen names when she opted for an authentic fiction writing career, following her activities of a longtime journalist.

She is Sherryl Woods, the bestselling author of Sweet Magnolias series.

The reading audience is invited to enter into the fictional town of Serenity. The setting chosen for the series is the Lowcountry of South Carolina. The charm and old traditions of the region breathe in the books. At the core of the series are several generations, and that merit of the books provides ground for approaching issues from the perspectives of the teenage representatives and the senior cohort of “magnolias”. The author subtly explores the families, and that resonates with the readers’ personal stories, and life expectations and endeavors. Woods is skillful in constructing her plots with the basics of the stories, main points, characters’ motivations, conflicts, different voices that deliver the message. The books are character-driven and insightful.

Sweet Magnolias series creates a benign environment for tackling difficult issues, like betrayal, single parenting, children bullying, physical abuse, crisis in the family over finances, and others, stemming from real life. All the characters add value to the stories that follow one after another; they change their places as main or minor, supporting characters, depending on the focus of the author and the primary storyline she pursues.

Humor is an intrinsic flavor of the Woods’ stories. Some of the lines, describing difficult periods in the characters’ experiences, fuse with the light sense of having a positive and amusing spirit and touch to life in order to drive it to triumphant moments.

A thread that is also running in the series from one book to another is the lasting friendship of the heroines. The author is passionate about relations with a long history, shared secrets and moments, compassion and understanding. The loyalty trend survives for every new generation of Sweet Magnolias. And the sense of a close community, with its own history, as well as open to new challenges, is vibrantly perceivable throughout the plots. The Sweet Magnolias represent a bunch of good friends – the original triumvirate is constituted of Maddie, Dana and Helen – and their tales unfold in three consecutive books; it later bridges with the daughters as a new generation following the characteristics of Sweet Magnolias; margaritas, guacamole, and a tip of good advice bring them together to cry, celebrate, or simply share the moment.

In Sweet Tea at Sunrise and Honeysuckle Summer human relations are at stake. Sarah Price is on a quest for happiness and self-esteem restoration. Her way back home promises a new start in life. Will the Sweet Magnolias help her face the challenges? Travis McDonald respects her aspirations. Does he?

Sarah and Travis strive for dealing with their past experiences. Both characters are developed against the background of a solid cast stemming from the earlier stories in the series, and their storylines add extra touches to the main characters. Walter introduces an example in that respect; his self-discovery trend, and relation with Rory Sue are integrated in a subplot, and their role, though as supporting characters, has an impact on the plot development, the richness of the personages and variety of tales. The different dramatic experiences of the small community intertwine; gossip runs around, but reputation are preserved. The various subplots faithfully lead the reader to the right impression of strong bonds established by Sarah and her friends, Raylene Hammond and Annie Sullivan, the latter being the main heroine of Home in Carolina in the same series. The friendship is calling for reciprocity – now it is Annie that has to support her two loyal friends. Raylene is carrying the deep scars of a physical abuse, and in Honeysuckle Summer she is suffering from an anxiety disorder. Is there a sensitive man to help her healing the wounds?

The romance heroes of Travis in Sweet Tea at Sunrise and Carter Rollins in Honeysuckle Summer strike a sensitive chord. Carter, a sheriff’s deputy, taking care of his teenage sisters, brings Raylene on a ride roller-coaster style, and emotions escalate in real-life patterns; but, will be there more to come than one sweet summer only? The story, in general terms, has a touch of everything, and the loved interactions with family and friends prove heart-rending. The reader feels inclined to forgive Carter’s judgmental approach towards Raylene at the beginning, without him having a clue about the real story behind her.

The sense of community, the significance of family alliances and generation-related issues are mostly prevailing in Honeysuckle Summer, and a charming reference is the gatherings for the mythical margarita nights.

The specific features of the characters and aspects of their behaviors are well-researched by the author, and the narration and dialog reflect deep insights into human nature, acts and activities, a plethora of feelings, as well as, sometimes, in the cult of womanhood. Different personages in real-life events trigger ideas for the author to shape the characters and plots. And Woods looks for stories, as her nature of an experienced journalist and observer drives her. She admits of having also fleshed her heroines by integrating some of her insecurities and fragilities.

One day the series may find their way to the screen, as is the case with another popular series by the author, which Hallmark Channel will promote.

With more than 130 books to credit Woods for, the author has also a passion for movies, and is their avid watcher; theater, and especially Broadway theater; sports like tennis and baseball. Sherryl Woods is amusingly confessing that the baseball aspect shows up in her books, and the League players triumph.

Book Series In Order » Characters » Sweet Magnolias

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