I love the title of this book – the first novel written by Sarah Jio, who has gone on to write six or seven more novels. And I have already admitted to frequently being drawn into a book simply by its cover or title.
The Violets of March is the story of Emily, newly divorced and trying to recover from this unexpected life change. Years back, she authored one bestselling novel, and has been unable to write another since. To once again find her equilibrium, she decides to spend the month of March visiting her beloved Aunt Bee on Bainbridge Island, across the sound from Seattle, where she had spent many happy summers.
As Emily settles in, she comes across a diary that introduces her to a mysterious love story from back in the 1940s, featuring an unknown woman named Esther, the diary’s author. She can’t stop reading, and eventually begins to learn that this story has a profound impact on her own life and the lives of those she loves. It explains many things about her life.
The book goes back and forth from Emily’s time on Bainsbridge Island to the 1940s, as Emily begins to put together some of the pieces of her own life.
The book is a romance novel, plain and simple. And there’s not a thing wrong with that. The descriptions of this lush island and the relaxed and friendly people who inhabit it caused me great enjoyment. The story was predictable, but quite frankly, I think part of its predictability was that I might have read the book before – a long time ago. It all sounded so familiar to me.
If you are looking for a pleasant and uncomplicated read, The Violets of March is for you.
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