Book Review of Sweet Magnolias: Stealing Home

Liam Nicastro, Staff Writer

Sweet Magnolias Stealing Home by Sherryl Woods is the first book of her new series. The series was such a success that in 2019 it was optioned to become a Netflix series. After a flush of success, Netflix renewed the series for another two seasons. 

The central story revolves around the main characters of the story who are Maddie Townsend, Helen Dectuar, Dana Sue Sullivan as well as Cal Maddox. Maddie has a son named Tyler who is mentioned a lot throughout the book as well Maddie’s other two children. The book is set in a town called Serenity, but Maddie Townsend might not live there much longer. Her life is turned upside down when her husband left her for a younger woman. Maddie’s three children are heartbroken from the sudden change, and Maddie was left to deal with their emotions as well as her own. Adding to the stress Maddie has to find a new job after being out of the workforce for years, she will have to remember what it is like to work in a business again. She puts all the use of the business skills she has into her friend’s newest project. They plan to open the only fitness spa for women. 

Her son’s anger issues begin to affect his passion for baseball, and Maddie knows that she must help her son. She has to try to help her son. She wasn’t expecting to develop some feelings for her son’s coach, the handsome Cal Maddox, who has every woman looking his way. Maddie learns that he has feelings for her too but gossip in Serenity travels quickly, the town is raving about their relationship that may destroy both their reputations as well as their careers. He could be the one man in South Carolina who can help her find serenity after all. 

When I was reading this book I didn’t expect to get so emotionally attached to these characters. I liked getting to know each of them personally and responding to the gossip in the small town. While reading this book I enjoyed Maddie’s and Cal’s moments and how well Cal gets along with the kids, especially his relationship with Ty. Throughout the book, we see how Cal cares for Ty as well as the other kids. He always asks for their opinion and promised that he wasn’t going to hurt Maddie as their father did.  I also enjoyed seeing Maddie and Ty´s relationship of how at first they weren’t doing great because of the divorce and Ty having angry outbursts but throughout the book, we got to see what Maddie used to see in Ty before the divorce. 

When Maddie opens the spa with her two best friends, Helen and Dana Sue, we get to see how in rough times they come together and help each other whenever they need it. I love the moments when they have a night to just talk and catch up with their week. Overall the book was amazing to read, how Sherryl Woods was able to write the raw emotions of pain and how even though some relationships are not successful it still gives you hope that there is something special out there.