Sunday, June 23, 2013

Book Review: Confederates Dont Wear Couture

Libby's best friend and fabulous fashion designer, Dev, hatches a plan to jet down South and hawk his period gowns to the wives and girlfriends of Civil War re-enactors. With a pang, Libby abandons her plan to visit her boyfriend, Garrett, in Boston and jumps at the chance to help run "Confederate Couture," and let her inner history nerd loose in a 19th century playground. 

But Libby and Dev aren't whistling Dixie for long. Between the constant travel from battle ground to dusty battle ground (with no Starbucks in sight, mind you), blistering heat, and a violent ghost set on romantic revenge, they quickly realize Alabama's no sweet home. And the boys. . . well, let's just say Libby's got the North and the South fighting for her attention. 

Confederates Don't Wear Couture is another hilarious, historical romp from Stephanie Kate Strohm!  Quoted from Goodreads


This is such a cute follow up to Pilgrims don't wear Pink.  It's light, fun, and a great way to dip your toes in history.  Despite the fact the book is contemporary, you can't help but pick up all sorts of historical tidbits, as seen through Libby, the bubbly, fashion conscious, history nerd. 

Just like its predecessor, the author loads up on the historical details. You can tell the author has done her homework. The book is full of fun facts that anyone who likes history--especially Civil War history--will eat up, and explores why some people are so dedicated to reenactments (and why other people hate them). Basically Libby's love of history is infectious.  Even if history isn't really your thing (and there are plenty of characters who don't get the whole attraction), the story is a blast.

We get to see a lot more Dev this time around, and while he may be a bit of a stereotype, he made me laugh. Plus he made Libby the most amazing dresses, you can't help but want to steal him as a best friend for that alone. Garrett, too, is back, and as nerdy and in love with Libby as ever. Plus we get a whole host of new characters to enjoy.  Instead of wide-eyed ten-year-old girls, we get a bunch of boy scouts who run around hitting on Libby, a whole slew of Civil War re-enactors, and one very attractive southern gentleman. 

Okay, this book did suffer a little bit from second book romance syndrom. After establishing Garrett and Libby as a couple in the first book, the author had to do something to keep it interesting, so we get the standard: new love interest, lack of communication, rampant misunderstandings, etc.  Still, the story is great, and while I could have done without so much relationship drama, I liked the way in ended.

Plus, we get another ghost!  Yes, that's right, Libby has become the ghost whisperer for fake ghosts. I actually really liked the ghost aspect. It came with a twist that was beautifully set up but I never saw coming. 

All in all, this is a fun half historical, half contemporary story. It's just one of those books that makes you smile, with a great main character with a strong voice.  It's a delightful 3.5 stars for me.  If you haven't picked up Pilgrims don't wear Pink, you need to check it out, then move directly onto this book. Actually, you could probably read this book without checking out the first one, but you'll enjoy it more if you do. Regardless, when you're done,  you'll be stuck like me, eagerly waiting for the next one.  

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