The Peach Keeper follows two women in the town of Walls of Water. Paxton lives the life of a rich, young socialite. As president of the town’s Women’s Society, her life is filled with details and plans and lists. She seems to have everything – except independence (she still lives with her parents), love (she is in love with her best friend Sebastian, whose sexual preference is ambiguous), and friendship (her fellow members of the Women’s Society are more of the back-stabbing variety).
Willa has moved back to Walls of Water after her father died unexpectedly. She now owns an organic sporting goods store and has done her best to distance herself from her former life in the town.
When Paxton decides to host the Women’s Society spring gala in the former family home (well, mansion) of Willa’s grandmother, all sorts of family secrets are unearthed – both good and bad.
I definitely enjoyed this book, although perhaps not quite as much as some of Allen’s others. The realism part won out over the magic. There are hints of magic throughout, but it’s not very prevalent. There is, however, a brief cameo appearance by Claire Waverly from Allen’s Garden Spells. It’s always fun to see books overlap.
Willa and Paxton are characters you come to care for deeply and cheer for loudly. They were each so lonely in their own way that I wished I could befriend them myself! Through uncovering a family tragedy, they finally find friendship in each other.
If The Peach Keeper would have had a sprinkle more of magic, it would have been much closer to perfect. Even so, I devoured it eagerly and will continue to do so for every one of Sarah Addison Allen’s books.