Never Sit Down In A Hoopskirt is a novel that was hilariously penned by Cricket Rumley about southern debutantes. Whenever I read a book set in the south, I always feel the need to talk about how exotic the south is to me. Seriously, t he only southern place I have been is Orlando, Florida and I imagine that isn’t exactly THE REAL SOUTH. I feel a bit of a special connection to the south as my parents raised me on a steady diet of country music, so it might as well be a magical land.
In the Alabama town of Bienville, an elite group of young women are chosen to represent the town as Magnolia Maids. Essentially this is a debutante group. Jane Fontaine returns to town after being kicked out of multiple boarding schools. She reluctantly joins the Magnolia Maids at the request of her awesome grandmother. Jane really isn’t into the Maids and pretty much just wants to get out of it, but when a certain lady who is coaching the Maids wants Jane and a few non-traditional looking maids out, Jane decides to take the challenge head-on and stay with the Maids.
What I LOVED about Never Sit Down In A Hoopskirt And Other Things I Learned In Southern Belle Hell was the main focus on friendships and the group dynamics between the girls. I loved how Ashley and Mallory, the two traditional Magnolia Maids/Southern Belles acted as a foible for Jane. They pretty much represented the old guard, and yes, they do get angry when there’s a new ruler in town. Hilarity definitely ensues between the two groups.
However we come to learn that Ashley and Mallory are products of their environments. And what’s interesting is that Cricket Rumley actually does something to address racism and classism, it’s not just swept under the rug, we actually see it existing.
I will say though, Never Sit Down In A Hoopskirt is a victim of an unfortunate cover. I wonder if readers would be encouraged to pick the book up because the cover looks so young. And that saddens me because this is a great book with humor and heart.
Disclosure: Received for review.