Looking For Me by Beth Hoffman

“We are the authors of our lives, and, through choice or circumstance, some of us leave our stories unfinished or untold. Though it’s taken me a long while to get here, I’ve come to accept that life, like the vast woodlands that surround my childhood home, is layered with mysteries. 
And what of mysteries? 
We sift and search and question as we try to discover our truths and the truths of those we love, and sometimes when we least expect it, a mystery we never knew existed gets solved while all else remains unanswered.” (p. 352)
If Saving CeeCee Honeycutt is anything like Looking for Me, it’s no wonder that Beth Hoffman is so well loved. Her writing is evocative of the tender place we call home however each of us defines it.
I have never been to Charleston in my life, and yet I could walk the streets with Teddi looking at the fine historic mansions, or walk into her antique shop, as easily as if I was there a million times before. I could see the treasures she had on display, lovingly brought back to ‘life’ through her vision and hard work. I could laugh with her, and Albert, and Inez as they all worked comfortably side by side, invested into the antiques, but more into the relationship they hold with one another.
My heart felt tremendous empathy for Teddi, a single woman with great ambition: not to excel on a place such as Wall Street, but to achieve the dream of having her own antique store, her own small home. I could feel for the love she carried for her childhood home, a farm in Kentucky, with the barn, the hay, and the homemade bread slathered thickly with strawberry preserves. This life seems all but gone in the hectic pace of today, but how well I remember the farms of my youth…
The crux of the story, though, lies in the mystery of Teddi’s brother. Keenly attuned with nature, he would leave her feathers of ravens, or red-tailed hawks, or a bright yellow goldfinch. He would leave rocks, or notes, on her bedside table to find upon waking. And he would leave her completely, not knowing if he was dead or alive, living in the gorge or fallen to his fate. It was a terrible way to live, and having a special Grammy, a best friend named Olivia, and a lover named Sam, could only alleviate her pain so much.

I loved this book for exploring my heart, for keeping me in touch with nature and the things of this world which mean something to me, but most of all for acknowledging that there are some mysteries we simply must bear.

28 thoughts on “Looking For Me by Beth Hoffman”

  1. I haven't read any of Beth's work yet, but I know she's a prolific social media user and she is good friends with so many bloggers I love. I definitely want to give this one a try.


  2. This is my first book by Beth Hoffman, too, although I remember Les of Prairie Horizons speaking of CeeCee Honeycutt with great admiration. I can't imagine why it's taken me so long to read one of Beth's books, unless things like my Japanese Challenge got “in the way”. Anyway, I'm glad I've found her now! I think she'll speak to you, too, Andi.


  3. I'm so glad my review struck you, Jennifer, because it's often tricky to convey just how wonderful a novel is when it strikes you especially hard. It is indeed lovely. And perhaps you'll relate to the country passages as I did, even though you live in Wisconsin, I live in Illinois, and Teddi Overman lived in Kentucky.


  4. Lovely review, Bellezza! The book sounds truly wonderful–I'd like to read both of Beth Hoffman's books. I also noticed your the new B & W photos in your blog's sidebar. Very artistic!


  5. Wonderful review of a wonderful book. I adore Beth and her writing. Both of her books are fantastic but I have a special fondness for Saving CeeCee Honeycutt – you must read it!


  6. Thanks, Elizabeth. I'm glad I was able to download CeeCee when there was a special price on it earlier this summer. It's waiting for me on my nook (with 236 other fine pieces of literature)!


  7. Beth, what a nice surprise to have the very author I've been exclaiming about visit my own blog! I gather you're quite the presence in the book blog world, and that is really great to have your involvement. I am utterly charmed by your latest book, and now I cannot wait to read your first. Thank you!


  8. I just finished the book too…really enjoyed it. I haven't read Saving Cee Cee Honeycutt, but now I want to as well! The heartache was palpable in Teddi's relationship with her brother. His strength of character was so strong and yet painfully unappreciated by so many in his town…. it made me sad. It was a treat to read your review. 🙂

    Quite a lovely compliment to have the author visiting your site and review as well. 🙂

    Like the new punch of colour in your blog layout and if I'm not mistaken is your header font a bit different too?

    Take care and have a great summer….


  9. Oh….one more comment about the book…the brother in particular….his connection to nature was what I was referring to when I mention his 'strength of character'. Without giving away the story, I know his actions in other respects are controversial!


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