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~FREE DOWNLOAD ♭ Never Sit Down in a Hoopskirt and Other Things I Learned in Southern Belle Hell ☱ Expelled from thirteen boarding schools in the past five years, seventeen year old Jane Fontaine Ventouras is returning to her Southern roots, and the small town of Bienville, Alabama, where ladies always wear pearls, nothing says hospitality like sweet teaand pimento cheese sandwiches, and competing in the annual Magnolia Maid Pageant is every girl s dream But Jane is what you might call an anti belle fishnets and tattoos than sugar and spice The last thing on her mind is joining the Magnolia Maid brigade and parading around town ina dress so big she can t even fi t through doors So when she finds herself up to her ears in ruffl es and etiquette lessons, she s got one mission EscapeWhat s a hipster to do Will Jane survive Bienville boot camp intact or will they gasp make a Southern belle out of her yet Like probably about everyone who read this book I was attracted to both the cover and the title From page number one all the way to the very last sentence of page 296, this book has not failed to be humorous, interesting, and a very good read. Despite being heavy on the stereotypes, this book was entertaining, to be sure There were several moments I was laughing out loud at the Magnolia Maids and their antics I also particularly enjoyed the part of the plot that explored modernizing the court of the Magnolia Maids for the first time in its history an African American and a non wealthy girl were elected to the court I would have liked to have seen these aspects explored , that might have given the book some substance.I don t Despite being heavy on the stereotypes, this book was entertaining, to be sure There were several moments I was laughing out loud at the Magnolia Maids and their antics I also particularly enjoyed the part of the plot that explored modernizing the court of the Magnolia Maids for the first time in its history an African American and a non wealthy girl were elected to the court I would have liked to have seen these aspects explored , that might have given the book some substance.I don t mean to make it sound like a a terrible book I did enjoy Never Sit Down in a Hoop Skirt Jane s character was particularly unique and I admired most of her viewpoints on life Three stars While the book was entertaining, it was one hundred percent fluff and I didn t feel like any of the characters had real substance I didn t feel any chemistry between any of the love interests, either If you liked the movie Legally Blonde, you will probably also enjoy this book And if you re looking for some pure fluff to read in between heavier books, this might be a great way to go if you enjoy stereotypically Southern tales reviews at pandareads.com I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this story I picked it up because the title made me laugh and I was expecting a cute, but forgettable read There was a lotdepth to the story than I expected Jane was a fairly complex character, and each of the girls had a distinct personality Some didn t get much attention, but I never had trouble remembering who was who, as is sometimes the case in books with a multiple teenage girls return return Jane does a lot of growing, which I loved and t I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this story I picked it up because the title made me laugh and I was expecting a cute, but forgettable read There was a lotdepth to the story than I expected Jane was a fairly complex character, and each of the girls had a distinct personality Some didn t get much attention, but I never had trouble remembering who was who, as is sometimes the case in books with a multiple teenage girls return return Jane does a lot of growing, which I loved and the sarcasm made me laugh It was also a nice change that the romance element was a very minor piece of the story The focus is all on the girls and their relationships with each other The writing completely conveys the Southern feel I have never visited the South, so I don t know if it was an accurate representation or not, but I could definitely imagine how everything would look from the way the it s described This book was a really pleasant surprise Link word to describe this book cute Honestly, that s pretty much it I mean, this was definitely a fluff novel where there wasn t too much conflict and even the conflicts that were there were either very insignificant or easily solved Jane, the main character, was supposed to be all about the anti belle but honestly, to me, it didn t seem like she was protesting that much when she was selected to be part of the main squad In fact, it seemed that Link word to describe this book cute Honestly, that s pretty much it I mean, this was definitely a fluff novel where there wasn t too much conflict and even the conflicts that were there were either very insignificant or easily solved Jane, the main character, was supposed to be all about the anti belle but honestly, to me, it didn t seem like she was protesting that much when she was selected to be part of the main squad In fact, it seemed that she had enthusiastically joined it and welcomed the participation because she even went out of her way to learn and read the handbook Okay, the handbook part was for her to stand up to this nasty girl in a courteous manner but still Memorizing the handbook still takes up a lot of work So because the whole rebellious side was what I was looking forward to, Jane was kind of a let down for me I was really expecting a lot of fights and crazy antics but the reality was that it wasn t that crazy For example, they were supposed to think of a fundraising idea and historically, the debutantes would do a car wash and a bake sale or something like that but Jane thought outside of the box and suggested beach cleaning What a crazy idea I was honestly expecting something a littleoutrageous than beach cleaning The other characters, specifically her fellow Magnolia Maids, were so clich that it hurt my teeth There was the stereotypical girl who basically was born for this and spent her entire life prepping to be a Maid the girl who basically followed the former girl around since birth the standard black girl whose true purpose was to add diversity to the group the book even stated so the ridiculously over the top nice girl who spoke with a serious Southern drawl even though most of the other people lived in the South as well so I was confused as to why her drawl was so muchpronounced and of course Jane, the rebel , who really wasn t a rebel With these uber clich characters, it is no wonder why all of the conflicts were so unoriginal That being said, other than me character bashing, there were some deeper aspects on the book particularly with Jane and her mother s death and fat shaming However, some of these issues were so hidden in the book that you really had to read between the lines to understand fully what the problems were Overall, this was most definitely a fluff novel so if you want to pick up something quick and simple with lots of laugh then give this book a try Somewhat sweet, completely hilarious, and just plain Southern. Review originally posted here.I call the south home but I am not from here Minus a three year stint in New Mexico I have lived here since I was 16 My parents are originally from Michigan The places I have the most memories of I lived prior to here were England, southern California and upstate New York I was little prepared y all Things are different here Wedding are different, funerals are different, life is different There are things I have come to appreciate about this region I call hom Review originally posted here.I call the south home but I am not from here Minus a three year stint in New Mexico I have lived here since I was 16 My parents are originally from Michigan The places I have the most memories of I lived prior to here were England, southern California and upstate New York I was little prepared y all Things are different here Wedding are different, funerals are different, life is different There are things I have come to appreciate about this region I call home the availability of sweet tea in restaurants, sweet potato casserole, Mayfield Dairy products, the Blue Ridge Parkway, the beaches, being surrounded by so much history There are still things that have me boggled about the place the array of desserts people insist on making from citrus fruits, the need to throw anything edible into a deep fat friar, how slow everyone moves, the entire state of South Carolina And while I love the history I don t really see the need to cling to it like it is a lifeline and you are about to drown Also, the famed sweet southern hospitality is a veil of hypocrisy that makes me want to grind my teeth to dust Which is why I was excited to read Never Sit Down in a Hoopskirt and Other Things I Learned in Southern Belle Hell by Crickett Rumley I connected with Jane s character immediately and settled in to enjoy myself The book is a very fair portrayal of the region, good, bad and indifferent.Jane s voice had me from the beginning She is intelligent yet sounds genuine And she is funny Not sarcastic, funny Well, a little sarcastic but it is not overkill The entire book is funny especially if you know the south She pretty much had me hooked for good on page 29 with this Oh no He did not But yes, he did Mr Walter had just uttered the dirtiest six letter word in town Change Southerners tend to have a real hard time with that word Don t get me wrong, we do appreciate certain kinds of change bigger Walmarts with grocery stores inside for easy one stop shopping Fancy, new subdivisions out in the county, far from those darn city taxes Modern new churches with rapidly expanding memberships But when push comes to shove, if the change is substantial, forget it People who don t understand us would like to say it s because we re backward or stupid or lazy But really, it s because of the ancestors It s as if everybody thinks all our dead ancestors, back to the ones who showed up here from France and Spain to colonize the joint, are sitting up in the afterlife watching our every move, fixing to send hellfire and damnation down on us if we dare deviate from the way they set things up for us We fear thatthan we fear the Supreme Court, the National Guard, and the evil guy from Saw all put together For that very reason it is not uncommon for a young lady to hear things like, Your great great grandfather founded the Presbyterian church in 1785 No, you cannot take yoga It s heathen This is such an accurate summation it comes as little surprise to discover author, Crickett Rumley, is from the south Notice how Jane is referring to all this though, how she is using we She includes herself in this Her town, her heritage, is important to her even if her time away from it has left her questioning it in a way she never would have had she not been banished Jane s anger and rebellion are directed toward her father who, after the biggest parental overreaction in history, took her away from the home and grandmother she adored Most of Jane s rebellious antics take place prior to the start of this story She just has a couple left over souvenirs, a smoking habit and a tattoo that has the Magnolia Maid seamstress coming up with inventive ways of sewing an off the shoulder gown Jane also has a big mouth that gets her in trouble She is very vulnerable though and this is shown when she is confronted by the solicitude of those in the town who remember her The fake solicitude that is the veneer on the ugly gossip spread about her She is a very sympathetic character and it is easy to relate to her emotions Her fellow Magnolia Maids are also well written They all have distinct personalities and stories of their own.The book s one major flaw in my opinion is the heightened ridiculousness of some of the scenes It was almost as if the author couldn t decide if she was writing satire or a humorous look at life The book is mostly the latter, but there are a few scenes that fall into the former category making them seem a bit too much However, I mostly enjoyed how realistic the portrayal was of the girls, their relationship, the region, and teenage life in general.There is a romantic thread very loosely woven through the broader fabric of the story So loosely woven there isn t even any kissing except a flashback to Jane s very first kiss I liked this because Jane s crush, Luke, was her best friend in her former life in Bienville and reconciling with him is part of reconciling the new Jane with the old life she had and the one she is now building.Mostly this is a story about Jane and the other girls It is a lovely read about friendship, sisterhood, and finding and accepting your place in the past and the present.For Concerned Parents There are a couple incidents of underage drinking in the book one of which gains the girls a tour of the city jail and there is also some discussion of sex I love this book, but then I was born reared in the heart of its setting It was so much fun to read, if you re not from here you ll enjoy getting a taste of what Gulf Coast Alabama girls go through for the sake of tradition appearances I love this book, but then I was born reared in the heart of its setting It was so much fun to read, if you re not from here you ll enjoy getting a taste of what Gulf Coast Alabama girls go through for the sake of tradition appearances Let me start by saying, I am from the south Born and raised in and around Mobile, Alabama to be exact, and I must tell you that I found this book simply hilarious I have first hand knowledge of the organization that the Magnolia Maids were based on, as my daughter was on that court about 3 years ago I think you can enjoy the book, even if you ve never heard of them, but it might help to have a little bit of knowledge about the girls and the organization for you to really appreciate the humo Let me start by saying, I am from the south Born and raised in and around Mobile, Alabama to be exact, and I must tell you that I found this book simply hilarious I have first hand knowledge of the organization that the Magnolia Maids were based on, as my daughter was on that court about 3 years ago I think you can enjoy the book, even if you ve never heard of them, but it might help to have a little bit of knowledge about the girls and the organization for you to really appreciate the humor of this book My daughter also read it and got the biggest kick out of it We both truly enjoyed this little gem of a book This was a cute little teeny bopper book filled with snarky sassy and funny moments I m sure if I had read this in high school I would have loved it even.