Lily Fontaine and Trent July are getting married. If they
have anything to say about it, their wedding will be a low-
key affair, even with the entire town of Henry Adams
invited. But if Bernardine Brown, the town's benefactor,
has her say, Lily and Trent will have the wedding of the
century. As Lily in particular struggles to have the
wedding she dreams of without offending her boss and friend,
other issues arise to threaten their plans. Will Lily and
Trent make it to the altar, and if they do, will it be an
nondescript altar or one resembling the Taj Mahal?
Henry Adams continues to be the kind of place that seems as
though it would be a hoot to reside in. Not everything in
Henry Adams is perfect, as a number of its residents would
attest to, but what the town has in spades is priceless: an
unshakable sense of community bigger than any individual or
Each Blessings novel adds a dimension to the question, "What
constitutes family?" From the beginning, adoption has been
an issue on the forefront in Henry Adams. But in SOMETHING
OLD, SOMETHING NEW, Jenkins takes on other aspects of
today's families, like the blending of families into a
single unit, the aftermath of families that dissolve, and
the coming together of disparate branches of a family. What
makes the novel so enjoyable is that the story centers
around a positive family and community event, the impending
nuptials of Lily and Trent.
As much as I like Bernadine and all that she means to Henry
Adams, I found her well-intentioned desire to give Lily a
blowout bash with all the trimmings a bit annoying. Seemed
to me Bernardine would understand and respect Lily's desire
for a smaller, less pretentious affair. But I guess it was
just Bernardine being Bernardine, wishing to shower
blessings upon those who are dear to her heart.
Putting that aside, I continue to enjoy the Blessings series
and all its quirky characters and nuanced relationships. I
loved the ying and yang between the branches of the July
family, and also how readily Trent and his father Malcolm,
along with other residents of the town, open their arms to
those in need. The absolute best thing about this series,
however, is what makes a Beverly Jenkins' novel unique.
Readers are guaranteed a history lesson delivered within the
context of the story and its characters. Jenkins blends
history with fiction so well, it's sometimes difficult to
tell which category a particularly interesting tidbit falls
into. Either way, her stories are delicious and always
leave behind both feelings of satisfaction and want...for
her next novel.
All they want is a nice, simple wedding, but their
well-meaning neighbors are turning the no-fuss affair into
the event of the decade. Bernadine, the town's fairy
godmother, wants Lily to have a storybook wedding fit for a
princess, and Lily's nine-year-old foster son is campaigning
to be town preacher so he can officiate at the ceremony.
Trouble multiplies when Trent is called on to help a new
family move to town, not to mention Lily and Trent's task of
blending their families together.
With the bustle of the tight-knit, and often tightly wound,
friends and family pushing them to the breaking point, the
couple begins to wish they'd eloped. But, as they'll soon be
reminded, happiness in Henry Adams is meant to be shared.