This book reminded me a lot of the tv show Nashville. I was completely stoked about it. I love love love that show. I do have a weird fascination with certain country music artists and a handful of pop artist.
Annie Mathers is every country label’s dream. The daughter of two country stars–one star shined a bit brighter than the other. If her parents’ relationship was a healthy one, I would’ve thought they were like Faith Hill and Tim McGraw. But her dad, Robbie Mathers was a good ole Southern boy who married the Yankee country queen, Cora Rosewood. Annie is America’s sweetheart who was raised in chaos. Her parents were gone, drunk, or high. But Annie went to the Grand Ole Opry at the rope age of 5. She resisted the urge to sing, record, or anything to do with country music. It has always been in her blood. It took country superstar Clay Coolidge to make her realize that.
Clay reminded me of a young Kenny Chesney. He sings about drinking and having fun–frat boy songs. Clay has some demons of his own that he has been running from for a long time. One too many bar fights has put him at the top of the labels–it list. To redeem himself, he needs to return to Nashville with Annie Mathers as a label artist. He does just that. She becomes his opening act of his summer tour. Like everything else in his life, it doesn’t go according to his plan.
Annie’s sweet as a bell compared to his bad boy reputation has people making connections to other country couples such as Annie’s parents and Johnny and June Cash. It also starts rumors of the two in a romantic relationship when they hate each other. Hate is a powerful emotion–one that can turn into love at the drop of a Stetson or ball cap.
This is a very sweet romance with no sex, very little language, and a sprinkling of religion. Country music and God go hand in hand. It is not overtly religious, Annie goes to church and sticks to her religious beliefs but she doesn’t expect nor preach to her bandmates when they engage in various behaviors.
It very much reminds me of multiple characters in Nashville.
The only complaint I have is the ending…sucks. The book just stops. No resolution for the characters at all. No happy ever after.