Henny just had the most wonderful weekend with the man she’s always been in love with…until she gets hit by a car walking back to the Pine Creek Motel where she works. Henny’s untimely death doesn’t end with her following the light into heaven, instead Henny finds herself still among her friends and family and feels that there must be a reason that she hasn’t passed to the other side.
As she watches her friends lives go on she travels around town and see’s Proposition 9, a proposal for a law against LGBTQ’s in Oregon is fought again, 15 years after it’s inception. Through Henny’s flashbacks we re-live the original opposition and also the day her friend Mackenzie revealed she was gay. The parallels to what is happening in her town today are apparent but the difference is in how her group of friends deal with that opposition today. Welcome to the Pine Away Motel and Cabins is a look inside a small community while they are grieving, loving, fighting for a cause, and finally moving on from their grief.
Bivald pits Henny’s diverse group of friends against the ultra conservative Baptist community who are trying to convince their town that evil things are going on at the rundown motel. It’s run by homosexuals and their guests are the town rejects (and Henny’s dad), gasp! As we get to know these people we see how banding together against a common enemy helps them deal with their grief for Henny. I loved the diverse cast of characters and how Bivald showed that despite people’s differences on the outside, inside they have the same depth of feeling.
If I had one criticism it would be that I felt Henny’s personal story was left a little unresolved. That’s it. I can’t say anymore because I’m afraid I’ll give the story away. I will say that this story touched me and made me jealous of the wonderful friendships portrayed in this novel and I cried quite a few times. So, keep some tissues close at hand!
I received a copy of this book through NetGalley for my honest review and it was honest!
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2 thoughts on “This Chick Read: Welcome to the Pine Away Motel and Cabins by Katarina Bivald”
This sounds like a super emotional read- even if Henny’s story is left a bit unresolved. Excellent review!
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It was definitely emotional as all the characters were grieving Henny, but somehow not overwhelmingly so. Thanks!
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