Saturday, December 24, 2011

Julie's Review: The Violets of March

Summary: 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. A mesmerizing debut with an idyllic setting and intriguing dual story line, The Violets of March announces Sarah Jio as a writer to watch. ~amazon.com  

Review: It's hard to put The Violets of March into one single genre because it encompasses so many different ones. Ms. Jio is a superb storyteller. She knows her characters and makes you fall a little in love with them with each page you read. Emily, is definitely down but she's not out of the game of love. Her husband left her for another woman, which causes Emily to wonder who she is, how she got there and where she goes from there. This is where her Aunt Bee and Bainbridge Island enter the novel. This is the respite that Emily needs to heal herself. Little did she know it was going to send her on an sleuthing adventure into her family's history. Try as I might have to figure out the mystery behind Emily's family, I just couldn't do it. I had it all mapped out and figured out in my head, only to pretty much say "OOOH" that's what it is!! (Granted this was in my head as to not wake up my husband at midnight). The Violets of March is a love story with a mystery at it's core. It is everything I love in a book, which of course makes it a easy book to enjoy. Emily is a very likable character and the supporting characters are even better. There is no one-dimensional character in this book. I will admit at first I was rooting for Greg, purely because who doesn't like a old romance to bloom again? Quickly, though my alliances shifted to Jack. He just sounded dreamy, plus Aunt Bee wasn't a fan and really who doesn't like to go for the guy that your family is a little weary of?

The mystery in 1943 is really what sets this apart for me. Like Emily, I couldn't get enough of the red diary she found in Bee's house. I wouldn't have been able to shake it either and I would have had to have dug in deep as well. The twists and turns the story takes is amazing and well worth the ending that caught me off guard. If you haven't discovered Sarah Jio, then you must read her book. I swear you won't be disappointed. I'm thrilled that next month I get to read her newest book The Bungalow, which I'm sure is just as special as The Violets of March.  



Final Take: 4.75/5

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