Jennifer Sylvester wants one thing, and that one thing is NOT to be Tennessee’s reigning Banana Cake Queen. Ever the perpetual good girl and obedient daughter, Jennifer is buckling under the weight of her social media celebrity, her mother’s ambitions, and her father’s puritanical mandates. Jennifer is officially desperate. And desperate times call for Cletus Winston. Cletus Winston is a puzzle wrapped in a mystery covered in conundrum sauce, and now he’s in a pickle. Despite being convinced of his own omniscience, extortion by the exalted Banana Cake Queen of Green Valley has taken him completely by surprise. So… what’s a maniacal mastermind to do? Likely, the last thing you expect.
The Danny Ocean of rural Tennessee gets manipulated by the person he least expected.
OMG you guys, this one was the best one so far. I read it so quickly. Let me tell you, I did expect this to me my favorite because I’m slightly obsessed with Cletus and his manipulative ways throughout the previous books. I was NOT disappointed. Cletus is the best!!! Let me tell you why he’s been my favorite since book one – he is so odd and quirky and vindictive and and sneaky – I love it all!
A lot of pros in this book- also the pros of reading the books in order- you get so many snippets of the previous characters lives in the other books! It’s so fun.
Jennifer is a fun and sad and open. She is an amazing heroine in the book. I’m also slightly obsessed with her. Do you remember in Truth or Beard when I said I just wasn’t in love with Duane and Jess? That is clearly not the case for these two love birds. I loved Jenn’s response to Cletus when he asked her what she wanted to be:
“A mother,” I said simply, because it was true. That’s what I wanted first and foremost. “And a really excellent wife and partner. And homemaker. I want to have a family to take care of, to love and fuss over and think about. That’s what I want. I know it’s not progressive or flashy, and I know people don’t place much importance on that stuff anymore, just like people don’t put much importance on humility and kindness, forgiveness and compassion. But those things are important to me. I know people will look down their noses at me for being just a mom, but I’m used to being marginalized for what I do and what I look like. And I think being a great mother is the most difficult and most important job in the world.”
I mean, you guys! This quote is the bees knees! It reminded me of Mona Lisa Smile when Julia Stiles says a similar sentiment to Julia Roberts.
Now that I’ve been raving about this book you are wondering yourself why I didn’t rate it 5 stars. Well you are right to wonder and I did almost rate it 5 stars but there are still two things as a whole in this series that I don’t LOVE.
The steam level. Truth be told, in this book it is lower than the others but then it gets right up to bat with the other books towards the last 8th of the book or so.
The biker gang plot. I know- I should just accept it. It’s part of the plot! I just don’t like it, I’m sorry!
Listen to: The Best of You and Me by Number One Gun
Watch: Mona Lisa Smile
Do: Bake! (And a tip from me to you, bake precisely as the recipe instructs. It’ll be a game changer).
Future predictions for the other Winston Brothers books:
Claire and billy. Beaue and Shelly. Roscoe and ? (Who will Roscoe end up with?!)