The Southern Side of Paradise

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 07 May 2019

Member Reviews

I received an ARC of The Southern Side of Paradise from Gallery Books and NetGalley.  All opinions are my own.

I loved Kristy Woodson Harvey’s first two novels in the Peachtree Bluff series and I was super excited to finally see how the story will end for the Murphy Sisters and their mom Ansley.

This book has all the feels you want in a Southern novel.  TSSP focuses mainly on the youngest sister Emerson as she is planning her wedding (well her sister Caroline is really planning it), finally coming to terms with her medical issues, and the anticipation of her move back to LA.  Of course, KWH throws some great curves into the story which are well written and appreciated.  Have some Kleenex ready as readers find out  what  happens in the lives of Caroline, Sloan, and Emerson.  Throw in Ansley’s story with her true love Jack and readers are left with The Southern Side of Paradise being the perfect ending to the Peachtree Trilogy!  

I only wish their stories weren’t over as I have really enjoyed these novels.  I’d love to see them made into a movie!!  I want more!!!
Was this review helpful?
I have been anticipating  this conclusion to this series. I could't wait to get my hands on it and dive in. I have been reading this author since her beginning, and this series is such a great series.

After the previous book, I was curious where Harvey was going to take with this book. There were things I was looking forward to happening in this one; things that had to happen. I was scared how they would play out though. 

I definitely didn't expect so much in this book. The heartbreak. The healing. The turn of events... I was definitely caught off guard with a few things in this one. They were pleasantly surprising. 

I have already formed such a connection with all of the characters in this series, reading their conclusion felt bittersweet. After all of the ups and downs in the series and in this book, I was left with a content smile on my face. I was left knowing that all is right in Peachtree Bluff.
Was this review helpful?
This series is EVERYTHING! I now consider Kristy Woodson Harvey one of my FAVORITE authors after reading her Peachtree Bluff series. So thankful that I found her books. This series drew me in from the very beginning and I absolutely did not want it to end. Such well developed characters and emotional story lines intertwined through all three books. Her writing sucked me in and made me feel like I was one of the Murphy girls! Do yourself a huge favor and read this amazing series. Kristy did an outstanding job and I cannot wait to read her other two stand alone books. FIVE STARS for the Southern Side of Paradise!
Was this review helpful?
This is hands down the best series I have ever read. I am so invested in the family in this book and feel a bit of grief that this will be the last book in the series. The women in these books are as real as anyone with real life problems. They remind me of friends and family that I am graced with. I’m sad that this is it for this family but I am crossing my fingers that we might get an update on them in the future. By the way 5 stars is not enough!!
Was this review helpful?
The Southern Side of Paradise is the 3rd in a series by Kristy Woodson Harvey.  The protagonists are three adult daughters and their mother, all of whom are dealing with momentous events in their relationships with their significant others.  The mother, Ainsley, is engaged to the love of her life whom she left as a young woman (I'm sure the back story is told earlier in the series) at the same time her youngest daughter, Emerson, is engaged to the man she believes is her soul mate.  Ainsley's oldest, Caroline, has discovered that her husband, James, has been cheating on her.  Ainsley's middle daughter, Sloan, is dealing with her own issues.  Her husband, Adam, a soldier, was badly injured and then captured.  Although he was found and repatriated, his injuries will prevent him from returning to duty.  Harvey's gift for characterization is such that I found myself wishing I could go to lunch with Ainsley.  Her plot is rich, vivid, and perfectly detailed.  I loved this book so much that I will be purchasing and reading the first two.
Was this review helpful?
This book is a big 'ole dose of food for the soul. My favorite of the entire trilogy, I feel like it couldn't have ended better. I had a moment of, "oh no,  I only have 20 pages to go" so I set it down because I just didn't want it to end. 

P.S. I still just cannot stand Ansley

Thank you Netgalley for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review...

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/2742329176
Was this review helpful?
Kristy Woodson Harvey is absolutely one of the best authors ever!  I love these series.  I'm sad that this is the final book in this series, but she definitely outdid herself with it.  The Southern Side of Paradise is spectacular.  You will love it!  This family and this setting feel like home.   I can't wait to see what she writes next.
Was this review helpful?
Thank you Net Galley for my ARC. This was the 3rd book of this series. 3rd times a charm. Definitely by far my favorite book of the series. This book focuses on Emerson, the youngest of the Murphy sisters and her decision to choose between small town life and marriage or making it big in LA as a movie star. Would make the perfect beach read with summer just around the corner.
Was this review helpful?
The Southern Side of Paradise by Kristy Woodson Harvey is the third in the Peachtree Bluff Series.  The third time is the charm.   I have enjoyed the series and hate to see it end.  This book focuses on the baby sister in the Murphy Family – Emerson.   The series is about a mother and her three daughters who return to their roots in Peachtree Bluff when their lives come apart.   Each book is a standalone story, but I recommend reading the entire series so you understand the other sisters’ perspectives.  This book is voiced by Emerson and her mother Ansley.   As with any good southern writer, the relationships between family are key and secrets always come out in the end.   I love when characters get a second chances at love.   I was drawn in from the beginning.  It was like seeing old friends again.  I think I enjoyed this one the most even though it was the last sister’s story.  I wanted all the Murphy women to be happy in the end.
Was this review helpful?
This final book of the series is superb! This is a complex, compelling story of a family of strong women- three daughters and a mother who got their strength from their grandmother. It’s a true page-turner which leads the reader to follow the journey of each woman as she interacts with the other important women while following her heart toward true love with a husband and family of her own. Beautifully interwoven plots demonstrating the power of love and unbreakable bonds of family members lucky enough to remain true to supporting one another, no matter what.
Was this review helpful?
loved the cover and this book! It was a quick read and hard to put down! After reading the first two, this was like revisiting old friends. Great book for the beach too!!
Was this review helpful?
I know that this book will appeal to a lot of readers. It is an easy, breezy beachy read that finishes up the Peachtree Bluff trilogy. However, I really wanted more from these characters. All of the women seem so shallow. I did like Emerson's story, especially her LA flashbacks, but I do think it was a tad predictable.  

And I just can't really get over the fact that this series justifies and condones adultery. That's just so bizarre and distasteful to me.

With all that being said, I loved the setting of the book and the small town characters.  The town meeting with Hal about the goats was great. I think the portrayal of the beach town and its odd assortment of inhabitants was spot-on.  I'm confused by Kyle's background though--- how was he originally from Peachtree Bluff and didn't meet Emerson until LA??? That was confusing to me. 

Overall, 2.5 stars rounded up to 3 for the goat scenes.
Was this review helpful?
This is such a good book and a terrific end to the Peachtree Bluff series! I was anxiously awaiting this third installment of the series and it did not disappoint! This book focus on Emerson, the youngest of the Murphy sisters and her decision to choose between small town life and marriage or making it big in LA as a movie star. The whole series, I've found the characters to be very relatable and so engaging. I'm sorry to see this series ending because I've grown to love the characters. I look forward to reading more from this author!
Was this review helpful?
****Thank you to NetGalley for providing an ARC of this novel****

Have been waiting for the last installment of the Peachtree Bluff series featuring Ansley Murphy and her trio of fierce daughters ever since I heard it was happening. I enjoyed both of the previous novels in the series, Slightly South of Simple and The Secret to Southern Charm.

This third and final installment focuses youngest daughter Emerson. That being said, Kristy Woodson Harvey does an excellent job of weaving everyone and everything together, adding just the right amount of backstory to reconnect you with her characters and bring you to the series conclusion. It’s obvious from her writing that these characters have become family to her as much as they have her readers. While it will be hard to move on (perhaps some of these characters ((Caroline please?)) will pop up in other stories) this is a well thought-out ending to a heartwarming series. 

If you happen to like down-home southern voices with a dash of off-beat, wholeheartedly recommend you give this series a try—it’s a perfect addition to a summer vacation reading stack!
Was this review helpful?
I loved this book. This book is extremely relatable. It picked up perfectly from where the other book ended but at the same time you could seamlessly read this book first as well. I loved the characters because they are realistic. Anyone of them could be someone you know, a family member, a friend, a coworker. The complexity of their relationships were just so accurate. This family struggles with so many of the same issues we ourselves struggle with everyday. 
This book is about a mother and her three daughters. the relationship between each of these characters is so unique in each individual way. The relationship between the sisters is just as unique. None of these relationships are perfect, nor are they without the mayhem we often have in our own families. The family secrets and animosity run deep and help reveal each characters flaws as well as their deep bonds and love for one another. It reveals a true sense of family, the good, the bad and the ugly. It is not your typical fairy tail but when you finish the book you are left feeling good and wanting more!! I highly recommend this book and I personally cannot wait for Kristy's next book!! She is by far one of my favorite authors!!
Was this review helpful?
A favorite Southern author, Kristy Woodson Harvey delivers a bittersweet heartwarming conclusion to her popular Peachtree Bluff trilogy with THE SOUTHERN SIDE OF PARADISE. (what a knock out cover). Fans will be excited for this final book in the series, yet will miss all the fabulous characters (male and female). 

My "favorite book" of the series with some shockers you do not see coming! An avid Jack fan and delighted for a happy ending! Top Books of 2019. Five stars + 

Things get heated as secrets from the past come to the surface with this lovable cast of characters: Mother Ansley and daughters Caroline, Sloane, and Emerson. 

Emerson takes center stage as she faces whether to marry her childhood sweetheart and be pulled back to Peachtree Bluff, choose her career, or possibly another love interest. Being true to one's self is an ongoing theme. 

While there are two weddings to plan, some unexpected characters from the past surface, causing further complications. 

Will Jack and Ansley finally get their second chance and happily ever after, and will all the girls understand the choices made out of love? 

Set in the charming historic Southern town, Kristy Woodson Harvey delivers top-notch storytelling, with fully developed characters for a multi-generational and inspiring story of love, hope, family, and forgiveness. 

I am a huge Ansley/Jack fan and could not imagine how this would wind up. Kristy once again exceeded all expectations! Some Ah....moments. 

Kristy's Ansley reminds me of Wendy Wax's (Ten Beach Road) character: Madeline Singer. Both are mothers and grandmothers. Both have put their family first throughout their lives. However, however, now late in life, they are finally getting their second chance for happiness with the men they love. Since I am in this age group, I adore these two authors, series, and characters!

I have read all of Kristy's books since her first, and knew then she would be a star! As I have mentioned in the past, "think". . . Emily Giffin, Dorothea Benton Frank, Mary Kay Andrews, Mary Alice Monroe, Wendy Wax, Karen White, and Patti Callahan Henry— combined with Kristy's own unique, charming signature style. 

With her winning savvy style, her passion, and love of family, community, and the South —resonate throughout each page. What a perfect beach read and furthermore a "must-read" summer series. Do not leave for vacation without it. 

Stay Tuned for More: April 22-May 7: A book giveaway contest. A complete three book paperback set of Peachtree Bluff Series. (more details to follow).

Very excited to announce the upcoming Q&A Elevator Ride Interview with Author Kristy Woodson Harvey, coming May 8! Lots of fun facts from this extraordinary author. 

I highly recommend each of her books. One of the top Southern Contemporary authors out today! 

PS, Thank you, Kristy, for including me in your acknowledgments. Honored, flattered, and humbled. As always, a delight to receive an early reading copy thanks to Gallery Books, Kristy, and NetGalley.

JDCMustReadBooks
Was this review helpful?
Another fun, lovely book from Kristy Woodson Harvey. I've loved all three in the series, and I'm sad that it's over. Caroline, Sloan, Emerson, Ainsley and Jack are all amazing characters. So happy with the way that everything wrapped up. I definitely shed some tears and laughed throughout the book. This series is definitely one that I recommend to everyone who asks me what they should read. Looking forward to seeing what's next for Kristy Woodson Harvey. Thank you to Netgalley for letting read an early copy of this book. I've been looking forward to it since I finished the last one.
Was this review helpful?
I was over the moon excited when she reached out to see if I would like to read The Southern Side of Paradise early. Of course I said yes and I got to reading. I couldn’t wait to read the book but I was a little sad to be reading the last story in the Peachtree Bluff series. I started by trying to follow the executive editor, Laura McKenna’s, advice by envisioning myself on a porch swing, mint julep in hand, with a great book (this one), and a view of the ocean. You’ve arrived the Peachtree Bluff state of mind.” It was the perfect way to read this book. So get yourself ready and off we’ll go.  I was trying to savor every page, but I was also flying through it excited to see what happens to Emerson Murphy. Emerson is the youngest sister and we finally get to hear her story! Emerson is an actress who knows she needs to be in LA but has fallen back in love with her high school boyfriend Mark. He runs his family business in Peachtree Bluff and doesn’t want to leave. When Mark proposes, Emerson is caught off guard and says yes because she thinks it is the right thing to do. Caroline starts planning a beautiful wedding that takes advantage of everything Peachtree Bluff has to offer: the water, the beautiful scenery, and all the interesting characters that you find in a small town. Mark and Emerson are unable to figure out how to balance life in Peachtree Bluff and life in LA. How will they take care of children (definitely not with the help of Duchess, Mark’s mom)? How will they spend enough time together with Emerson’s acting and business venture in LA? Emerson is torn between standing by the man she loves and standing up for what she loves. I give the book ☀️ ☀️ ☀️ ☀️ ☀️, 5 bright sunshines!  The great thing about a series is that this isn’t just Emerson’s story. We are still following Caroline, Sloane, and Ansley to see how their stories continue with their changing family dynamics. You find out how Caroline is reconciling her relationship with her husband. How Sloane is adjusting to life with her husband back from war. And Ansley has to share all the secrets she has been keeping to protect her daughters. Go read the Peachtree Bluff series! Try to read them slowly, to savor your time with the Murphy sisters and their mother, Ansley, because the three books go so fast and all the sudden you’ve read them all.
Was this review helpful?
The Southern Side of Paradise by author Kristy Woodson Harvey is like having a delightful visit with family and friends! I was very happy to read this book in the Peachtree Bluff series about the Murphy women. Even though this is the third book in the series, it can be read as a stand alone book without confusion. Ansley is a devoted mother with three independant daughters. Caroline, Sloane, and Emerson each have had some life changing decisions to make and all the girls ended up coming home to Georgia in the previous books. Ansley always puts her daughters first in her life which causes a few problems now that she has reconnected with one of the loves in her life, Jack. The story unfolds with so much emotion between the sisters and Ansley gets caught in the middle when old secrets are exposed.
Publication Date: May 7, 2019
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read and re3view this book.
Was this review helpful?
I finished the ARC of this book in 24 hours and loved every minute of it. I had previously read the other 2 novels in the Peachtree Bluff series and couldn't wait to read this one. Following the stories of the Murphy women, The Southern Side of Paradise was a fantastic end to a fantastic series. The author wrote a realistic story of relationships between mother-daughter and sisters. I really loved this book.
Was this review helpful?