Synopsis: Everyone assumes Rosa Lee Altman lived a life without passion. But buried secrets are meant to be revealed. And no one is prepared for what they discover beneath Rosa Lee’s overgrown roses — or how her legacy will change their lives with love.
The once beautiful Altman home sits empty, its gardens overgrown, its windows boarded up — an old lady, now silent, surrounded by what passes for progress in Clifton Creek, Texas. But if some of the townsfolk have their way, this lovely reminder of times past will be sold off to the highest bidder.
When a group of community members with little in common is chosen to decide the fate of “the old Altman place,” they soon learn that this home is more than bricks and mortar. It’s also a place that harbors a love so strong, it still has the power to change the entire town.
My Thoughts: Jodi Thomas is a great storyteller. Her stories have a way of keeping people engaged and involved in what the characters are doing. What I like most is that her stories aren’t just about the male and female relationships, they also encompass entire communities. This story is no different.
In Clifton Creek, we have Sidney Dickerson, and orphaned professor nearing her 40th birthday, Sloan McCormick, a loner who is in town on business; Ada May and Beth Ann Rogers, retired schoolteachers who have a knack for getting into trouble (and creating some great laugh out loud moments for this reader); Lora Whitman, a newly divorced young woman trying to break free of her overbearing mother; Billy Hatcher, a young man trying to break free of a reputation he didn’t earn; Micah Parker, a widowed pastor living alone with his young son, and Randi Howard, a widowed local woman who owns a neighborhood bar. This group, with the exception of Sloan and Randi, has the unenviable task of deciding the fate of the Altman home, the former residence of the founder of Clifton Creek.
The group is immediately drawn together from a catastrophe at their first meeting and it seems hardship and sabotage follows them as they continue to meet to decide the fate of this house. As they grow closer, they become a makeshift family and support each other as some of the committee members make discoveries about themselves and their pasts that they never saw coming.
Verdict: This was Good. I should also mention that this is a loose follow-up to The Widows of Wichita County, which I still haven’t read. I think Rosa Lee is probably better than I give it credit for, but I just had problems getting through it. Mostly because my mind kept straying to what I was going to read next, so I wasn’t concentrating on what I should have been. I may have to re-read this again. You know. In the perfect world where I actually finish reading everything in my TBR pile.