The Charm Bracelet by Viola Shipman

The Charm Bracelet

I was very surprised to learn that Viola Shipman is a pen name for Wade Rouse, a popular, award-winning writer. He chose his Grandmother’s name to honor the woman whose charm bracelet and family stories inspired him to write his debut novel. According to the author page he is already at work on his second “heirloom” novel, which should be out in 2017.

Through an heirloom charm bracelet, 3 generations of women will rediscover how important family is and how each charm on their bracelets have impacted their lives.

Every year, on her birthday, Lolly’s mother gave her a charm, along with a small piece of advice that there is nothing more important than keeping family memories alive, and that Lolly’s charm bracelet would be a constant reminder of that love.

Now 70 years old and starting to forget things, Lolly knows her time is running out to reconnect with her daughter, Arden and her granddaughter, Lauren whose lives have become too busy for her and her stories.

When Arden and Lauren come home to Scoops, Michigan, to check on Lolly and spend some time with her during the long Memorial Day weekend they all will find their way closer to not only each other, but to finding the joy, love, and faith in life that they have lost.
The past and the present are remembered and told through each of the charms on Lolly’s bracelet.

The minute I saw this book I wanted it. It was the charm bracelet for me. Being from Southern Georgia, getting your first charm bracelet at age 10 is a high point. After that every birthday, holiday and special occasion is marked by the gift of a charm. My mother’s bracelet rests in her jewelry box now, too heavy for her delicate wrist. Every charm has a story just as Lolly’s did.

I thought this was a charming story of family, love, and forgiveness. A story of listening and really hearing the generations that have come before you. Of seeing our own mothers as real people who still have a lot of life, love and wisdom to impart to us. Wisdom that we will pass on to our own daughters.

I laughed and cried and then read some more and then I read it again. And still cried.

Great Book Club selection as well as a great summer read!

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