Southern Belle Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Southern Belle

Mira, May 2004, 6.50, 384 pp.
ISBN: 0778320782

In Savannah, thirty-four years old Elm MacBride is hurt when she realized that her husband Harlan, a two time Congressman with higher ambitions, had a mistress, her high school nemesis Jennifer Ball. Distraught, Elm visits her friend attorney Meredith Hunter who admits she knew of the affair, but insists that Elm placed Harlan on a pedestal as being Mr. Perfect. Elm decides to obtain a divorce while fleeing for Giocanda Mancini's chalet in Gstaad, Switzerland during his House re-election campaign built on family values.
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Thoroughbred horse breeder Viscount Johnny Graney comes to Gstaad because his mother insisted on a family vacation. Johnny, a widow with a teenage child, and Elm meet.   Both are shocked by an instant attraction as Johnny has not found any woman appealing since his wife died and Elm had always believed that Harlan was Mr. Right. However, as they fall in love, Harlan with his Lady Macbeth like ambitions will do anything conceivable including becoming a widower to insure his wife will not remain his only liability to becoming re-elected.

Though it is difficult on the surface to accept how far Harlan (he is too amoral for his wife and her father not to grasp his real nature) will go to insure another term, Fiona Hood-Stewart makes him seem very realistic. The story line starts as a character study predominantly looking close into the heroine as she evolves. Ultimately the tale switches gear into an intrigue as nothing will stop Harlan from his objectives. The romance between Johnny and Elm underscore the plot transformation that readers will enjoy.

Harriet Klausner

The review of this Book prepared by Harriet Klausner

Chapter Analysis of Southern Belle

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Plot & Themes

Time/era of story    -   2000+ (Present Day) Inner struggle subplot    -   Yes Struggle with...    -   angst over dead lover    -   angst over past traitorous lover

Main Male Character

Profession/status:    -   business executive Age/status:    -   20's-30's

Main Female Character

   -   20's-30's Profession/status:    -   homemaker


Europe    -   Yes European country:    -   Switzerland

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment What % of story is romance related?    -   70% Focus of story    -   equally on him and her How much dialog    -   significantly more dialog than descript

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Fiona Hood-Stewart Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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