In Her Boots
by KJ Dell'Antonia
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Pub Date 05 Jul 2022 | Archive Date 05 Jul 2022
PENGUIN GROUP Putnam, G.P. Putnam's Sons
Sometimes you have to go big to go home.
Rhett Gallagher’s adventurous life is imploding. Just as she turns the big 4-0, her long-term relationship collapses and her gran’s death draws her back to the family farm. The only silver lining is that Rhett’s inspirational book, The Modern Pioneer Girl’s Guide to Life—written under a pseudonym—has become a wild success, so much so that when her big publicity moment comes, self-doubting Rhett panics and persuades her best friend, Jasmine, to step into the limelight in her stead.
But their prank turns into something more when the controlling mother Rhett hasn’t seen in two decades announces her intent to sell the farm Rhett loves and expected to make her own. To save her inheritance—and her identity—Rhett must concoct a scheme that will protect her home and finally prove to her mother, and to herself, that she can stand on her own two feet.
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 136 members
A funny thing happened on the way to The Today Show...Okay, I fell in love with this book right from the beginning when Rhett landed in NYC with nothing more the clothes on her back and her backpack and passport, straight from Argentina after learning of her grandmother's death while she was out on the wilderness away from communication. When she leaves the airport terminal and there is a car in a loading zone about to get ticketed and the driver being yelled at by the rude passenger she knows she can help. Making a deal for a ride she strikes a bargain with the female security guard for a bobby pin and fixes the fuse. This is how the MPG, Modern Pioneer Girl, rolls. Now she has a ride to her destination for the night, to visit with her best friend, Jas, before she is on a bus to New Hampshire and her destiny. There she finds her mother, who she hasn't seen for 20 years holds the trust to the farm she thought she owned and she is half owner and her mother has a buyer. You now have the premise but you really need to read this story. Rhett may be nearing 40 years old but she lacks the maturity since she has been running her entire life. This is the story of friendship, loyalty, family both real and those you choose, and love. Once I started this book I could not put it down and have already recommended it to my daughter. I highly recommend this one to everyone. Do I agree with the MPG philosophy? You bet! Everyone needs to know how to do many things and no one should have try to fit into a certain niche just because they are told to.
KJ Dell'Antonia delivers just the right balance of humor and romance and hot mess and deep wounds with her main character Rhett in In Her Boots. If you've ever felt like you couldn't live up to parental expectations, you will definitely relate to Rhett. And even if you didn't, you'll be shouting at her to "just 'fess up, already!" after what clearly was a harebrained idea snowballs.
What I loved about the story is that nearly all of the main characters grow over the course of the book - Rhett, her mom, Margaret, her best friend Jasmine. (Jasmine might be one of my favorite characters, honestly.) Part of growing up is recognizing that sometimes, the person who's been painted as the villain doesn't carry all the blame (in the case of Margaret) - unless they do (like Jasmine's husband.)
In Her Boots is a fun, fast read about forgiveness and second chances, and about staying true to who you are.
Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing an advanced e-copy of the book.
To me, this story is about Rhett Gallagher, who growing up longed for her mother and her mother's approval. Now she is 40, her grandmother has died, and she is heading back to her grandmothers farm, Pioneer Hill. Before going there, she stops at her best friends, the book she has written, The Modern Pioneer Girl’s Guide to Life is a bestseller, and she has been invited to go on the Today show. She wrote the book under a pseudonym, Maggie Strong . She doesn't want to do it, but her friend Jasmine convinces her to do it. When they get to the studio. She hears a familiar voice, and it is her mother, who she hasn't seen for 20 years. She wrote the book as her alter ego, to help her through the tough times. But when she hears her mother's voice, it is like she is that little girl once again, and she thrust Jasmine into the limelight as Maggie. No one has ever seen Maggie before, so no one knew the difference.
Jasmine decided to go to the farm with Rhett and when they arrive, Rhett's mother is there, along with her old boyfriend she hasn't seen in 20 years. Rhett and her mother have never really had a conversation, just what they perceive the other one would think. Her mother wants to sell the farm for $250,000 dollars to the college. Rhett believed she was going to be the owner of the farm. Her mother gives her two weeks to show her the plans for the farm, and how she is going to buy her half.
There is a lot of action going on, Jasmine, has been helping her out, getting the farm stand, up and running, and getting the land ready for farming. Mike has been helping her, along with his daughter. His daughter isn't communicating very well with her father, and Rhett can understand
It doesn't seem like any of them is going to compromise, communicate, and when time is running out, Rhett writes her mother a letter and encloses a check. . When I read what she wrote, it was heartbreaking, and when her mother got it, her reply was fine. But the story isn't done, so you will need to read the book to know what really happens.
The story is so much deeper than what I thought it would be. It is about parents making mistakes, a child hurting and not knowing how to stop the hurt, it is about what they do to make it through, and can they stop, and listen to each other. That it seems is the only way to heal, have the relationship they each wanted, and move forward.
I received an ARC from Penguin Group Putnam -G.P. Putnam's Sons through NetGalley.
Rhett Gallagher has lived a life filled with adventure and has channeled it into writing a hugely successful book, The Modern Pioneer Girl’s Guide to Life. She’s also amassed a large online following in the process. The thing is: she’s kept her identity a secret and used a pen name while doing so. When her pseudonym, “Maggie Strong” is approached to be on The Today Show and reveal her identity, she hesitantly accepts but then quickly changes her mind. Her best friend, Jasmine, unexpectedly and very publicly becomes the face of The Modern Pioneer Girl instead and everything quickly gets out of hand.
I enjoyed this book immensely and was so invested in this story and its characters. This story was centered around so many important life lessons and realistically depicted different types of familial, romantic, and platonic relationships.
The setting was one of my favorite parts - KJ Dell’Antonia did a wonderful job painting such a vivid description of the Pioneer Hill farm and made me truly wish it was a real place so that I could visit. I’ve always wanted to live on a farm or at least many acres of land (hopefully one day!), so reading a story mostly set on one was extremely enjoyable for me. I especially loved reading about the animals - a miniature horse named Brownie?! SO CUTE! 🐴
The friendship aspect was the driving force of this novel and I adored every minute of it. It made me feel warm and fuzzy inside and I couldn’t get enough. The romantic storyline played a role too but it was not the focal point, which I appreciated, since more time could be spent focused on the driving force of this story.
Rhett, the Modern Pioneer Girl and the main character, is so awesome and I relate to her so much. I’m very private person and hide a lot of who I am on social media for both privacy reasons and because I’m quite shy, so I can completely understand where Rhett’s mindset is by keeping her online identity a secret.
Jasmine, or Jas, is Rhett’s longtime bff and is my favorite character. Loyalty is incredibly important to me, so finding a character that will truly go to the ends of the Earth for her best friend makes my heart very happy. She’s also a very talented baker and hearing about all of the delicious food she baked made me very hungry and had me itching to get into the kitchen to whip up a sweet treat! 🍪🥧🧁
I wholeheartedly recommend this book and LOVED IT!
Read this if you love:
👩🌾 Farm life (complete with adorably named farm animals!)🐴🐓🐑
📱 Social media & Instagram
💕 Female friendships
👨👩👧 Family dynamics
A big thank you to KJ Dell’Antonia for reaching out and providing me with an eARC of this book. Thank you to G.P. Putnam’s Sons and NetGalley as well. It was such a wonderful surprise to get to read this story early!
My favorite books, especially when I’m reading women’s fiction, are those where the main character grows and evolves. The metamorphosis of Rhett, the main character, would have been enough for me to love this novel. Add to that a story filled with humor and warmth, with a cast of characters who were equally lovely and frustrating, including farm animals bursting with personality—this book is a solid 5-star read. In Her Boots is a poignant story about forgiveness, second chances, and being true to who you are and what you want, even when being who you really are leads to hurt and disappointment. There are many levels to this compelling book, with a fast pace that kept me turning pages.
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