Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Dear Carolina by Kristy Woodson Harvey and a Couple of Giveaways!

Release Day! 

Dear Carolina

Dear Carolina by Kristy Woodson Harvey 
Paperback and e-book, 320 pages
Published: May 5th, 2015 by Berkley

A moving debut novel about two mothers—one biological and one adoptive—from a compelling new voice in Southern women’s fiction.

One baby girl.
Two strong Southern women.
And the most difficult decision they’ll ever make.

Frances “Khaki” Mason has it all: a thriving interior design career, a loving husband and son, homes in North Carolina and Manhattan—everything except the second child she has always wanted. Jodi, her husband’s nineteen-year-old cousin, is fresh out of rehab, pregnant, and alone. Although the two women couldn’t seem more different, they forge a lifelong connection as Khaki reaches out to Jodi, encouraging her to have her baby. But as Jodi struggles to be the mother she knows her daughter deserves, she will ask Khaki the ultimate favor…

Written to baby Carolina, by both her birth mother and her adoptive one, this is a story that proves that life circumstances shape us but don’t define us—and that families aren’t born, they’re made…

My thoughts about Dear Carolina ~~

Oh my! What an amazing, heartfelt, beautiful story. I loved the setting, the characters, the idea of a family being what you make it and not necessarily what you were born into, and that love can take care of so much.

Khaki and Jodi are both such great characters. Khaki has it all, it seems, except for the baby that she wants so badly. Jodi is a young, spunky, southern gal who has a baby but not much else. The question is, can they make this work? I loved Jodi and her southern drawl and the things that came out of her mouth. She is such a hoot and has opinions about everything. 
'But here's the thing about worthless men: They know how to behave right well enough that every time you're right on the verge of scraping 'em off your shoe, they do something that makes you ignore how awful they been.'
The story is told in alternating voices as Khaki and Jodi each write to their daughter, Carolina. Their letters will help Carolina understand why they each did what they did, how hard these decisions were for them, and what they learned along the way. All I have to say is Carolina is one lucky little girl to have all these people around her who love her so much. 

Dear Carolina is not just a story of the love of a mother for her daughter. It is also a story of the strength of love in a family that enables one to grow to be the best person they can be. It is amazing how empowering love and the belief others have in oneself can be. 

As a side note, to get a little personal here, I am very, very close to a wonderful woman who gave her child up for adoption because she felt it was the best thing to do. It was an open adoption and she is still very much a big part of that young girl's life. It is so beautiful to see how their relationship has developed and to witness the love that they have for each other. It is a very remarkable thing to see. 

I loved everything about Dear Carolina and I know Kristy has a great writing career ahead of herself. This story was just so wonderful to read and I have definitely found myself another 'must-read' author. I look forward to reading more of her stories. 

There are so many wonderful quotes in this book. So much wisdom. Here are a couple of the ones I marked.  

And this one is my absolute favorite ....

Praise for Dear Carolina

“Characters with rich, complicated lives…beautifully shows how a family comes to be.”—New York Times bestselling author Jodi Thomas

"Dear Carolina is Southern fiction at its best. Lovely and lyrical, with the strong voices of the two female narrators taking us deep into the heart of what being a mother is about. It shows us that love is not without sacrifice, and there’s little in life that doesn’t go down easier with a spoonful of jam. Beautifully written."—New York Times bestselling author Eileen Goudge

"Dear Carolina is like the Southern women within its pages and those who will love this book, sweet as sweet tea on the outside and strong as steel on the inside. The dialect of the south is so entwined in these pages the reader is transported to a place where women and children are treasured and family rules all. Kristy Harvey is a natural."—Ann Garvin, Author of On Maggie’s Watch and The Dog Year

About the author

Kristy Woodson Harvey is the author of Dear Carolina. She blogs at Design Chic about how creating a beautiful home can be the catalyst for creating a beautiful life and loves connecting with readers at kristywoodsonharvey.com. She is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's school of journalism and holds a Master's in English from East Carolina University. She is a regular contributor for The Salisbury Post, Domino magazine and Houzz. She lives in North Carolina with her husband and three-year-old son.

Connect with Kristy

Purchase Dear Carolina

The first giveaway is for a $1,000 Shop Design Chic Shopping Spree to one lucky winner. (www.shopdesignchic.com

To enter: Send proof of purchase of Dear Carolina (photos are fine!) to readdearcarolina@gmail. Every book is an extra entry!

Also receive a free e-copy of the Dear Carolina Companion cookbook, full of favorite Southern recipes from renowned bloggers and family members, and Dear Carolina printable quotes just for entering!

The second giveaway is for all of you here at 
The Book Bag! 

Kristy will send a copy of her book to one lucky person. If the winner is international, they will get an e-book and if the winner is from the US, they will get their choice of either print or e-book. 

How awesome is that? 

Be sure to check the sidebar for my current giveaways!


  1. Sounds like an emotional story and I know I will cry when I read it. The excerpt alone has made my heart warm.

  2. Wow, this book sounds really really good! One that I would definitely read - going on my TBR list for sure!

  3. Congratulations and best wishes on the release of Dear Carolina which sounds captivating and very special. Thanks for this lovely feature and giveaway. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

  4. I can't tell you how much this gorgeous review means to me! Thank you so, so much for sharing Dear Carolina with your readers!

    1. Thank you, Kristy for writing such a beautiful book. And thanks for stopping by The Book Bag.

  5. It sounds like a wonderful story, and I love the pretty cover. Thanks for having the giveaway.

    1. Thanks for stopping Anita - I absolutely love this cover too.

  6. Congratulations on your first book! It looks like a wonderful book and it is now on my TBR list.

  7. Congratulations on your first book!!! giving me a vibe of feel good story :D

  8. This sounds like a charming book.

    allibrary (at) aol (dot) com

  9. I am from North Carolina!! I loved what I read about this book & I cannot wait to read more!! Congrats on you new book!!

  10. Cant wait to read this book!


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