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The Lilac Bouquet

Women's Fiction

The Lilac Bouquet Book Cover

Come hell or high water, Emmy Jo Massey will have a wedding. 

After three generations of Massey women with children out of wedlock, she wants the whole town of Hickory, Texas, to witness the legitimacy of her union with Logan Grady. But dream weddings aren’t cheap. So she accepts a highly lucrative stint as a home health assistant to retired realtor, and town recluse, Seth Thomas—a decision her great-grandmother Tandy is dead-set against.

Seth isn’t happy about it, either. The eighty-two-year-old doesn’t want a “babysitter”—much less a Massey—something he makes clear when Emmy arrives at his house, an empty mansion built for the woman who broke his heart. But as Emmy stays and the two eventually open up to each other, she learns the reason behind a feud between Seth, Tandy, and Logan’s grandfather Jesse Grady that goes back six decades. She also uncovers a secret that forever changes how she sees her past and her future…

“Carolyn Brown absolutely blew me away with this epically beautiful story. I cried, I giggled, I sobbed and I guffawed, this book had it all. I’ve come to expect great things from this author and she more than lived up to anything I could have hoped for. Emmy Jo Massey and her great granny Tandy are absolute masterpieces not because they are perfect but because they are perfectly painted. They are so alive, so full of flaws and spunk and determination. I cannot recommend this book highly enough.”

– Night Owl Reviews (5 Star, TOP PICK review)

“When Emmy Jo Massey accepts a summer job as a personal assistant to cantankerous, elderly Seth Thomas, everyone in Hickory, Texas, warns her against it. However, Emmy Jo is marrying Logan Grady, and as the first in her family to be planning a wedding without the impetus of pregnancy, she’s determined to make a splash the likes of which her hometown has never seen; that requires extra funds. Emmy Jo’s job is the target of particular vehemence from her sassy great-grandmother Tandy, a contemporary of Seth’s. It seems that something went down between them decades ago, and the curious Emmy Jo is determined to solve the mystery. The focus of the story is old small-town drama—the romance is a rarely visited subplot—but Brown pulls readers along for an enjoyable ride. It’s impossible not to be touched by Brown’s protagonists, particularly Seth, and a cast of strong supporting characters underpins the charming tale.”

— Publishers Weekly

“Brown’s latest would make for an enjoyable leisurely afternoon read…there is a family secret that is interesting, and the big reveal is surprising. The characters are fairly well-rounded and three-dimensional, and there are complex family relationships. If a reader is looking for a book more geared toward family and long-held secrets, this would be a good fit.”

— RT Book Reviews