Bayou My Love by Lauren Faulkenberry – Review

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Thirty-one-year-old Enza Parker is struggling to change the trajectory of her life. To prove to her overbearing father she can flip a house on her own, she takes on a project much too ambitious for her––and it puts her in the path of the most alluring man she’s ever met.

Enza plans to flip the house she inherited from her estranged grandmother, Vergie, in Bayou Sabine, Louisiana. As a child, she spent summers there until the day her mother—Vergie’s daughter—inexplicably left. Since then, Enza hasn’t let anyone get close to her.

Arriving in Bayou Sabine, Enza finds her house occupied by bedeviling firefighter Jack Mayronne. Enza has no intention of being a landlord, but Jack convinces her to let him stay––in exchange for helping her with repairs. With only six weeks to fix the house and sell, she’s determined to prove her father wrong––but she didn’t count on all the delicious ways Jack could distract her.

When Enza’s fling with Jack intensifies, she finds herself entangled with a vengeful arsonist from Jack’s past. As she reaches her breaking point, she must decide: Should she sell the house and leave her past in Bayou Sabine behind for good, or can she overcome her fears and build a new life there with Jack?

Lauren Faulkenberry is the author of the novel BAYOU MY LOVE (Velvet Morning Press, 2016), the novella BACK TO BAYOU SABINE, and the children’s book WHAT DO ANIMALS DO ON THE WEEKEND?

Lauren divides her time between writing, teaching, and making artist books. Originally from South Carolina, she has worked as an archaeologist, an English teacher, and a ranger for the National Park Service. She earned her MFA in creative writing from Georgia College & State University, where she attended on fellowship, and earned her MFA in Book Arts from The University of Alabama. She was a finalist for the Novello Festival Press First Novel Award, won the Family Circle short fiction contest for her story “Beneath Our Skin,” and was nominated for an AWP Intro Award.

She currently lives in western NC, where she is at work on her next novel in the Bayou series.

official website: www.laurenfaulkenberry.com
Facebook: Lauren Faulkenberry
Twitter: @FirebrandPress
Instagram: @Firebrandpress

My Review –

Bayou My Love is fun. It is full of hot romance. It is also a very well-written and enjoyable read.

As I opened the last moon pie I’d smuggled from the motel, I was hit with a flash from years before. Vergie and I were sitting on a quilt in one of the old cemeteries, back in a corner under an oak tree with limbs that undulated along the ground like tentacles. She was telling me ghost stories while we had tea and beignets, the powdered sugar clinging to our noses. We sat still as tombstones while a funeral procession passed, the people dancing as music filled the whole sky. “Why are those people having such a good time?” I asked. “Isn’t that a funeral?” “That’s the grandest way you can say goodbye to someone,” Vergie said.

And so it goes in the South. We celebrate our life and then we send off with a celebration.

‘Oh, hell!’ I slammed the brake to the floor, flinching as the tires squealed and the Jeep fishtailed. I bit my lip so hard I tasted blood, and I called that gator everything but a child of God. I expected to hear a terrible thud at any second. Swerving, I missed him by just a few inches, but I was close enough to see his catlike eye as I shot across the opposite lane and onto the shoulder. Off to my left, there was nothing but swamp and black mud. I gripped the wheel, fighting to stay on the hard ground.

The author did a fantastic job with describing the bayou life in Southern Louisiana. Living in the area, it wasn’t hard to form a picture in my head while reading the book. And, when you are picturing the scenery right outside your door, you know the author has hit the proverbial nail on the head.

The story invoked the mystery surrounding voodoo, folklore, and the swamp land and bayous. Bayou My Love was an enjoyable summer afternoon read in the springtime. I am giving the book five stars. The writing was exceptional and consistent throughout the book and offered some surprises in the story. A perfect read.

There was a whinning at the door, followed by persistent thumping. When I opened it, Bella pushed the screen door against the frame with her paw. When I cracked the screen, she rushed in and skidded behind me, then sat down and blinked at me, her tongue lolling. “Don’t look at me like that.” She lay down next to my feet and let out a heavy sigh. “You’re the one that started dragging up voodoo, and look where it got us.” She stared up at me, and I swear that dog rolled her eyes.

“What else could possibly go wrong?” I knew as soon as the words echoed against the tile that I should have kep that thought to myself, because as soon as you tempt fate, it will absolutely come to bit you in the ass.

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