February 20, 2012

Review: The Violets of March by Sarah Jio

The Violets of March by Sarah Jio

Release Date: April 2011
Publisher: Penguin | Plume
Pages: 304 pages
Source & Format: Christmas gift; Paperback
Amazon | Goodreads

Summary (from Goodreads)
A heartbroken woman stumbled upon a diary and steps into the life of its anonymous author.

In her twenties, Emily Wilson was on top of the world: she had a bestselling novel, a husband plucked from the pages of GQ, and a one-way ticket to happily ever after.

Ten years later, the tide has turned on Emily's good fortune. So when her great-aunt Bee invites her to spend the month of March on Bainbridge Island in Washington State, Emily accepts, longing to be healed by the sea. Researching her next book, Emily discovers a red velvet diary, dated 1943, whose contents reveal startling connections to her own life.

Thoughts on The Violets of March
The Violets of March has a little bit of everything. A little mystery, a little romance, a little historical fiction. I would see this slim little novel almost every time I went to the bookstore. I felt like it kept popping up, but I was never really drawn to it. Then, Amazon started putting it on almost every "Amazon Recommends" list, and I figured it was time to give it a shot. I downloaded a sample for my Kindle, was hooked, and immediately added it to my Christmas list.

Once I started reading it, there was no going back. I started it on a Saturday and spent the rest of the day devouring the sweet story. Emily travels to Bainbridge Island in the wake of her divorce hoping for some time to heal. Little does she know, she's walking right into a mystery. She discovers a diary in her room, dated 1943, and becomes entranced with the story on its pages.

The story contained within the diary leads Emily to discover a long-hidden family secret. The descriptions of the island were charming and vivid. The characters are memorable. The mystery kept me turning the pages, even though I figured a few things out before the heroine did. I won't say anymore so I don't spoil it.

My only complaint: Emily's new romance, while enjoyable, felt a little too "instant." I'm never a fan of relationships that don't seem to be based on anything other than mutual attraction

I really enjoyed The Violets of March. I think it would be the perfect novel to slip into your beach bag and soak up with the sound of the ocean in the background. And if you can't escape to the beach, a rainy day and a hot cup of tea would also suit it nicely. I didn't want to put it down, and I'd definitely recommend it.

So Quotable
"I've thought a lot about whether to write you, and my conclusion is this: Life is too short to worry about the consequences when you love someone as I love you. So I write you this letter as a soldier would, without fear, without question, and without knowing if it might be my last."

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