Friday, February 19, 2010

Fireworks Over Toccoa

RATING: 4 out 5

If you have been longing for the YaYa sisterhood to return, pick up and immerse yourself in Fireworks over Toccoa. You will be instantly transported back in time to the small town of Tocca, Georgia during WWII. You will embrace Lily. For even though she is a member of the privileged class of Southern women, Lily is also an independent, artistic, free spirit who learned all the correct behaviors from her mother, but can still see beauty wherever it exists.

Lily’s dilemma comes in the form of love. Love for her husband, Paul, that she barely knows, married just a few days before he leaves for the war. He leaves not as a combat solider but as the “Coke Colonel”, the man with the Coca Cola for the troops. A safe job. He is due back any time after a three year absence. And then, there is the new love that she develops for an intriguing, mysterious, sensual man, Jake, also just back from the war, who is preparing the explosives for the town’s 4th of July celebration. Oh, and he just happens to be Italian. Jake saw a different war than Paul did, and it impacts every part of his life, and the choices he makes for himself.

Mr. Stepakoff has an amazing voice for Lily. There is sensitivity, passion, and compassion in this young woman that you feel on each page. You can’t help but like her and will be pained with all the difficult choices she has to make.

I will not include any spoilers but I will say that the ending was a complete surprise and very moving. I recommend this novel as a very fulfilling read. This would make a wonderful movie as the visuals would be amazing.

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