Few things are as lasting as the bond between sisters. In her poignant debut, Elizabeth Bass explores the lengths one cobbled-together family will go to for each other, and the power of a connection that never fades. . .
Sassy Spinster Farm is a place to find solace. At least, that’s what it’s become since Rue Anderson and her sister Laura transformed their childhood Texas homestead into a successful tourist destination. It’s where guests flock to get their hands dirty and taste food fresh from the garden. And it’s where Rue is raising her pre-teen daughter on her own–while trying to keep her outspoken sister in check. It’s not easy, but together, it seems there’s nothing the two can’t handle–until an unexpected, and not entirely welcome guest shows up in the middle of one warm summer night.
Heidi Bogue, onetime stepsister to Rue and Laura, is back, and she’s hiding from something. Why else would she return to the place she was dragged to, kicking and screaming, as a teenager? A place she was thrilled to leave when, three years later, she and her mother bolted, leaving Rue and Laura’s father heartbroken? But while Laura is irate, Rue won’t turn Heidi away. Technically, they were once sisters, and to Rue, sisterhood is forever.
Soon, Sassy Spinster Farm is turned upside down by Heidi’s complicated presence. Still, Rue is determined that Heidi, like all their guests, finds the farm a safe place to discover–or remember–what really matters. It’s a revelation that will come sooner than any of them expected, when devastating news shakes the foundation of their tenuous sisterhood.
Moving and uplifting, here is a beautifully written novel about the bonds we are born into and those we create for ourselves–and of the strength that comes in loving without limits.
For an excerpt, please click here.
Elizabeth Bass’s debut novel, Miss You Most of All, is a book that will make you laugh, cry, and never lose hope. Set on a small farm in Texas, two sisters house boarders as a way to generate funds for their farm. Typically women, these boarders learn how to plant crops, sell them, and learn the daily chores of a working farm. While each set of boarders is limited to 2 weeks on the farm, Elizabeth Bass brings to life these smaller characters who the reader finds missing every time there stay has ended. From Becca, the attorney who loves to have an early morning run, to Janine who is a single woman that endlessly flirts with Webb, a worker on the farm, each of these characters are charming and bring some much needed breaks to the seriousness in parts of this book.
Rue is the oldest of the two, who has recently ended chemo treatments for breast cancer. She is the peacemaker in the family and finds the best in everyone. Ever so positive, despite her own battles with cancer, she is the calm and steady persona in an eclectic household. She has one daughter, Erica, who lives on the farm with her. Erica is a mini-Laura: loves the farm and her animals, has a mind of her own and will share it, and has no fear.
Laura is the younger of the two, who has a brassy attitude and never holds back her thoughts. Laura is the character that most readers will certainly disagree with her attitude and interactions with others. While she is a difficult character, who certainly lives up to her name: Sassy Spinster, underneath all that tough skin is someone that loves her sister tremendously and worries for her always. She also loves her chicken, Fred, who has his own challenges, too!
While both of them are hosting their first boarders of the season, their estranged step-sister, Heidi shows up at the farm unannounced. Heidi has an unusual dilemma and is hiding out on the farm in hopes to evade those who know what happened in NY. Heidi shares the same love Rue has regarding classic movies and music of all genres. Together, they enjoy challenging each other with movie trivia and watching old movies with their boarders. While on the farm, Heidi realizes her potential and soon begins helping Rue with the cooking duties.
Elizabeth Bass is exceptional in the way she brings everyone’s lives together, while also letting their own stories develop. The characters have some interesting twists and turns that will bring lots of joy as you read it. I must say, I balled my eyes out during certain parts of the book. Worse, I had to continue reading through tears and snot, after all…how else would I know what finally happens???
While there were some predictable moments and some far fetched scenarios, I still found myself deeply engaged in the story. When Erica realizes everyone has been acting as if Rue is fine and does not have cancer, I realized I was no different. I found myself wishing her to be cancer-free and doing much better than what was really happening. I love the tender moments Rue has with her family and the crazy moments Laura has, too. I certainly won’t watch The Wizard of Oz without thinking of the Sassy Spinsters and wishing their farm actually existed, too!!
During this particular summer, life on Sassy Spinster Farm, surely will never be the same. And….neither will you! I highly recommend this book!!