The Magnolia Inn


Carolyn Brown

The Magnolia Inn by Carolyn Brown is a story about taking responsibility and moving beyond your past. 

Jolene is a hardworking Texas bartender who has inherited half of a B&B from her Aunt and Uncle.  The other half of the Inn is owned by her Uncle’s nephew – someone who bullied Jolene as a child.  Luckily for Jolene, her soon to be partner decides to sell his half if the Inn, but will her new partner be an improvement or not?

Tucker is a former Police Officer turned carpenter who purchases the other half of the Magnolia Inn.  Tucker moved to Jefferson, TX after his wife died and he was thrown off the force for drinking too much.  Tucker agrees to finance the renovation and together he and Jolene work tirelessly to get the Inn ready for reopening in a few months.

Tucker’s drinking brings back Jolene’s memory of her mother’s alcohol and drug addiction and she’s not about to play the role of caretaker or enabler.  Jolene tells Tucker in no uncertain terms that the drinking is not OK.   Their business relationship is tested during the restoration process but they get to know each other and help each other let go of the past.

I honestly wasn’t a big fan of this book.  In addition to the two main characters, the author tells a parallel story of Jolene’s Aunt Sugar and her three girlfriends who provide Jolene advice on her relationship with Tucker.  I didn’t understand the intent of their conversations.  In general, this book didn’t make a lot of sense.  The cover of The Magnolia Inn is beautiful but it really is true, you can’t judge a book by its cover.