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Reviewed by Mamta Madhavan for Readers' Favorite
Sour Lemon and Sweet Tea: The Sour Lemon Series, Book 1 by Julane Fisher is a beautiful story with some powerful messages for young readers. Eleven-year-old Lillie Mae and her twin, Ellie, live on a chicken farm in Triple Gap, a sleepy town forty miles north of Atlanta. Most of their brothers and sisters are twins. They have invited their friends to their farm to play baseball and they have not invited Violet, the meanest girl in their class and the richest girl in town. Ellie calls her twin Lillie Mae 'sour lemon' because of her annoying habit of talking back. Lillie knows her parents are upset because of a stranger in town who is trying to buy their farm. Their father tells them that they will be able to keep their farm, one way or the other.
The story captures the lives of a normal family living on a farm, the obstacles they face due to the impending development of the area, and the way they resolve their issues. It is also a story about forgiveness and self-discovery. All the characters in the story are relatable and real and the author also demonstrates the Southern humor effortlessly through the dialogues. The conversational style of narration pulls readers into the scenes and the story, and it is good to see Lillie Mae slowly changing from being a sour lemon. It is a charming bedtime storybook to read out to children and the detailed descriptions and vivid images portrayed will make children look forward to book 2.