Monday, June 13, 2011

Book Review: The Violets of March by Sarah Jio

My latest listen was Sarah Jio's new novel "The Violets of March" - I don't remember how I stumbled upon "The Violets of March" - it wasn't an audible recommended pick and it wasn't on The New York Times Bestseller list - but nevertheless something drew me to this novel.

The Publisher's Summary

In her 20s, Emily Watson was on top of the world: she had a best-selling 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.
Sarah Jio is the author of The Violets of March, her debut novel. Based in Seattle, she's been the health and fitness blogger for and a contributor to major magazines, including Real Simple, Redbook, O, The Oprah Magazine, Cooking Light, Glamour, SELF, Health, American Baby, and many others

In summary, I LOVED this novel. I hit play as I left my driveway Thursday morning and I finished The Violets of March on my way to New Hampshire on Sunday and I 'lost' several hours of listening time when I discovered that part two hadn't downloaded properly - and Audible (in it's INFINITE wisdom) doesn't allow download of titles over 20mb via data connection (wireless or iTunes only). I won't get too deeply into the faults of the Audible iPhone app but really, if I want to blow 70mb of my data allotment downloading an audiobook let ME make that decision. So I lost two hours of potential listening on my way to a rehearsal dinner for the wedding this weekend. I powered through this audiobook - it was truly that good.

There is not much I can add (without adding a spoiler) to the publisher's summary - only that the characters are vivid and richly developed. Emily, Bee, Jack, Henry, Elliot - and Esther jump off the audiotrack as storybook characters. I'm still surprised that The Violets of March is Ms. Jio's first novel, I hope - like Emily - Ms Jio will put together a second (and third) novel  - only quite a bit sooner than 10 years!

The Violets of March was narrated by Lyssa Browne who captured Emily (and Esther) perfectly.

The Violets of March was written by Sarah Jio and published by "Listen & Live Audio" with a release date of June 2, 2011. The hardback version of The Violets of March was released on April 26th, 2011. The Violets of March has a runtime of 9 hours and 22 minutes.

Here's the book trailer on youtube (no spoilers).


1 comment:

Sarah Jio said...

Thank you so much for this kind review of my novel! I'm really touched that you enjoyed the story. My second novel, The Bungalow, is out in March. It features a cameo appearance from one character in VIOLETS. I hope you will enjoy the story as much. I look forward to hearing what you think! Best wishes, Sarah (P.S. I have a 9 year old golden retriever named Paisley!) xo