South of Sunshine is about a girl named Kaycee Jean McCoy who lives in Sunshine, Tennessee. The town is typically southern and church and football are the most important things there. When new family moves t town and Kaycee meets their daughter, Bren, she starts falling for her, but she’s terrified about what her family, friends and the rest of the town will think.
I think the author did a great job with the characters and descriptions. Sunshine’s Main Street sounds just how I’d picture a main street in a quaint town in the south. Some characters are a bit cliché (big, bigoted football star, super religious preacher, snotty church ladies), but some of them surprised me in the end. I enjoyed the main character and the three main side characters (Bren, Van and Sarabeth).
The way Kaycee feels stifled by her small town, her upbringing and peoples’ expectations of her felt very real. I love how her relationship with Bren progressed. It was slow and sweet with some hiccups along the way. I love when I get a sense of who the characters are and what they’re feeling rather than having them jump into bed with someone.
After Kaycee is outed and it seems the whole community is against her, including her two best friends, she really has to find herself and figure out who she is and what she wants. Watching her try to hide who she is was heartbreaking. I just wanted to hug her and tell her that things would be ok for her. And they were. The end of the book was great! Kaycee finally start living for herself and she found some friends and allies. I like that it ties things up, but still leaves room for the reader to make their own conclusion about where the characters end up.
I got a free copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.