Books to warm your heart, nourish your soul & spark your sense of adventure



November 25th, 2016 is a date that is etched in my brain. Not because it’s the day after Thanksgiving, which means no cooking (leftovers, yippee!). Not because it’s two days before my husband’s 40th birthday (are we really that old?). No, November 25th is the song my heart sings because at 12:01 am PT, Netflix will release four 90-minute revival episodes of Gilmore Girls. 


My obsession with Gilmore Girls began very late in the game. I was at a writer’s conference several years ago and one of the presenters suggested watching and dissecting the series because, in her words, “It’s a show where nothing happens but within a few episodes you become completely addicted to it.”

Maybe for TV fanatics, I thought, but not me. I decided to watch a couple of episodes and prove her wrong.

She was wrong. I’m not just addicted to Gilmore Girls, I want to be the Gilmore Girls. I want to be sexy, quirky Lorelai; grounded yet mysterious good-girl Rory; and power-player matriarch Emily.

stars hollowBut mostly, I want to be a citizen of Stars Hollow.

That might sound dramatic but despite that fact that this sweet New England town is fictitious, it already has my undying loyalty.

I long for a community like Stars Hollow, a town full of characters just as flawed as me, but instead of us all hiding behind pretend veneers, we celebrate our idiosyncrasies with transparent abandon.

Having a hard day? Imagine if you could take a break at Luke’s Diner for a jolt of caffeine, one of Luke’s tough-love pep talks, and a bizarre, yet surprisingly deep, insight from Kirk to help you put life back into perspective.

Forgot that one ingredient for dinner? No problem. It’s always fun to pop into Doose’s market and discover what hilariously annoying event/ordinance/town meeting Taylor is planning.

Kids getting on your nerves? Why not enroll them in a class at Miss Patty’s Dance School while you spend some downtime at the the Black, White, and Read Bookshop/Theatre or Kim’s Antiques.

Somehow creator Amy Sherman-Palladino took everything that is cozy, comforting, and loveable about Americana and distilled it into the character of Stars Hollow. I say character because the town becomes just as much a character in the series as any of the leads. In fact, the town Sherman-Palladino based Stars Hollow on is having a fan fest October 21-23 to celebrate this obsession. Pinterest pages are devoted to it. The town even has its own Twitter Hashtag! #StarsHollow 

Miss You Once Again Small Cover April 17

Setting as a character is also hugely important in my book Miss You Once Again. Caralee Trenton is a loner, untethered to anyone or anything aside from her dog Charlie. When she returns to her grandmother’s hometown of Eden Grove, Mississippi, Caralee feels immediately embraced by the small Southern town. Sipping sweet tea on the front porch, dancing at the county fair or watching watermelons roll down the road, Caralee discovers that Eden Grove, much like Stars Hollow, is an honest and quirky place.

As Caralee embraces Eden Grove’s warm, unapologetic authenticity, she is able to unlock layers of isolation within herself. Ultimately, Eden Grove helps Caralee renounce her loner ways and embrace a life of vulnerability and connectedness--with the help of a home-cooked meal and some sweet tea, of course!

I don’t know if towns like Stars Hollow or Eden Grove really do exist, but I know these fictitious settings represent our deep desire to be part of a community that loves and appreciates us. Thank you, Gilmore Girls, for making this element of human psychology so hilariously endearing to watch.


Kelly Baugh


 Kelly Baugh is the author of Miss You Once Again and Granny Bob's Homestyle Cooking


 Be part of the Hot Chocolate Press community by signing up for our Monthly Newsletter featuring book information, recipes, contests and other fun stuff. Sign up today and receive a FREE HCP Sampler.