A Sweet Lowcountry Proposal
Preslaysa Williams, author of the “emotionally stirring debut” A Lowcountry Bride (Oprah Daily), returns to the Lowcountry with a heartwarming story about a second chance romance.
It was supposed to be the happiest day of Jaslene Simmons’ life, the day she’d say “I do” to Marcus Clark. But when her sister dies in a tragic accident everything changes—including her once rosy future with Marcus. Jaslene instead pours all of her energy into caring for her now-motherless niece and running the wedding planning company she and her sister had built, wanting to honor her sister’s dream even if she has to sacrifice her own.
As an archivist at Charleston’s Black history museum, Marcus shines a light on the stories of forgotten people. Researching history is better than dealing with his own heartache—and the guilt he has over the role he may have inadvertently played in the death of Jaslene’s sister.
Jaslene never thought she’d cross paths with Marcus again, but her need for an affordable office space brings her to the museum which is faced with the threat of closure. As they work together to save it, their buried feelings slowly reignite. They soon realize there is still room in their hearts for love...if only they can overcome their past.
Williams's tepid follow-up to A Lowcountry Bride reunites a wedding planner with her former fiancé two years after tragedy disrupted their nuptials. Jaslene Simmons was about to walk down the aisle with Marcus Clarke when she got the devastating news that her sister, Hope, had died. Why she then walked away from the man of her dreams for good instead of postponing the wedding and allowing him to support her through her grief is never satisfactorily explained. Jaslene has since devoted her life to raising her niece, Imani, a violin prodigy, while continuing the wedding planning business she and Hope cofounded. Marcus, meanwhile, wrestles with guilt, illogically blaming himself for Hope's death, his younger brother's drowning as a child, and the recent wedge in his relationship with his grandfather. He takes refuge in his work at the Lowcountry African American Heritage Museum—which happens to be the venue for a last-minute wedding Jaslene rushes to plan. The pair's reunion is quickly overshadowed by convoluted family drama as Jaslene struggles with the thought of Imani leaving home for a music conservatory and Marcus uncovers family secrets. The declarations of love, when they inevitably come, feel entirely unearned. This is one to skip. Agent: Jill Marsal, Marsal Lyon Literary.