read this!

by jenna on June 30, 2011

So, ummm, I usually don’t do two book reviews in one week but I just HAD to share this gem of a novel.

I read the ENTIRE THING last night! It was that good. I simply couldn’t put it down. I read and read and read and finally went to bed around 11:30 when my eyes were about to fall right out of my head.

It was recommended to me by a blog reader! I love reading the comments on book posts to see what y’all are reading now. I get all my ideas from you! For reals.

This book contains two stories intertwined (love those!). The first story is of a present day woman recovering from a nasty divorce at her childhood home. When at home, she stumbles upon an old journal at her aunt’s house and instantly gets hooked on the story of three women in the 1940’s. As the book progresses, we learn of these women’s secrets, loves and losses. It had me hooked from page two and now I’m upset I didn’t read slower because it would have been a wonderful book to bring on vacation!

I’m seriously having attack of the Kindle thumb (buying way too many books with a simple click and then reading them at lightening speed).

Here’s what I’m on to next!

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{ 65 comments… read them below or add one }

Cait's Plate June 30, 2011 at 2:02 pm

Haha – when I got the kindle app on my phone I had the same problem. It’s way too easy to have books at the click of a finger!

I definitely want to read this book, it sounds awesome. I love them two stories are juxtaposed against one another within a book. The one I’m reading right now (called “The Writing Circle”) follows the lives of 5 different writes and intertwines all the people in THEIR lives into the story as well. SO GOOD!

Thanks for the review!


Jen June 30, 2011 at 2:13 pm

Booo, this book isn’t available on Kindle in Canada yet! I hate it when that happens :( I’ll have to keep checking – sounds like a great read. Thanks for the suggestion!


Baking 'n' Books June 30, 2011 at 4:58 pm

Can you get Kindles in Canada? I know they have Kobo readers?

I think one would be handy if only to save me bookshelf space – oof, my place is a cluttered mess 😉

Jenna – are you an Affiliate with Amazon?


Jen June 30, 2011 at 8:32 pm

@Baking…yes, you can get Kindles in Canada, though you have to order them from and then when you buy books you get them thru as well (so you buy in USD, but our dollar is so good right now that the cost difference is peanuts). The biggest upside to Kobo is that you can borrow library books on them for free, something Kindle doesn’t offer yet. I’m pretty sure Kindle offers a bigger choice of books than Kobo does at this point…either one is a good purchase if you’re an avid reader!


Cindy July 3, 2011 at 9:24 am

Actually, Kobo already has this book available, and usually has any and all books Ive wanted to purchase. And yes, the 100 free books are awesome! They even added more now, that you can download for free!


jen June 30, 2011 at 2:23 pm

i just put both of these on hold at the library. can’t wait to pick them up!


Courtney @ Girl In The Pink June 30, 2011 at 2:34 pm

This sounds right up my alley… I am such a sucker for romance novels


mom June 30, 2011 at 2:49 pm

From the cover alone this looks great !!


Kim @ Life Analytical June 30, 2011 at 2:52 pm

Sounds good! I’m finishing up The Uncoupling right now, which I think is good but not memorable.


Kate June 30, 2011 at 2:57 pm

I read both of these and loved them! I hear you on the Kindle thumb; I read The Violets of March on my Iphone and my eyes nearly did fall out of my head. So worth it though.


Mrs. Fish June 30, 2011 at 3:01 pm

I love your book review segment on your blog! This defiantly sounds like a must read!


Ida June 30, 2011 at 3:15 pm

Sounds like a great read! Kind of reminds me of Suite Française , which I read too fast and was sad when I didn’t have any pages left.


Miranda @ Working Mom Works Out June 30, 2011 at 3:17 pm

Sounds like it would be right up my ally! I’m going to the beach next week. Consider it BOUGHT!


Molly @ RDexposed June 30, 2011 at 3:19 pm

I’m already hooked while I’m reading you description!!


Lauren @ What Lauren Likes June 30, 2011 at 3:24 pm

I just put a hold on a copy at my library :) sooo excited!


Blog is the New Black June 30, 2011 at 3:31 pm

Can’t wait to read it! I am listening to The Murderer’s Daughters right now and loving it!


Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga June 30, 2011 at 4:16 pm

You read a whole book in a day! WOW!

I “hear about” people like you…and I am always amazed. I have never been that person.

Heck, I have trouble clearing out my google reader, let alone reading a whole book in a day :)

Glad you loved it and I love reading the comment fields in your book posts for ideas, too!


Julie H. of Spinach and Sprinkles June 30, 2011 at 4:21 pm

I need a good vacation read…. going to wine country! :) Thanks for the idea!


Andrea @ The Skinny Chronicles June 30, 2011 at 4:22 pm

You always read the best books. Thanks for the tip. I stayed up way too late last night reading Snow Flower and the Secret Fan. Don’t know how I missed that one for so many years. I’m not allowed to get a Kindle because I would buy too many books.


Lindsey June 30, 2011 at 4:35 pm

You read so fast, I can’t keep up!

I just finished Firefly Lane by Kristin Hannah and am now listening to Winter Garden during my commute per your recommendation.

Your book reviews are great! I was so tired of reading about some 35 year old ad exec in NY which every book I found seemed to be about. Thanks for helping me branch out! You should make a tab at the top of your main page for your reviews like ‘travel’ and ‘recipes.’


Baking 'n' Books June 30, 2011 at 7:36 pm

I was going to say the same thing – Books/Recommendations or something like that.


Karen June 30, 2011 at 4:38 pm

This book looks awesome, Jenna! Thank you!

I hear you on the overstocking issue, and I too am on a summer reading roll…keep the recommendations coming :)

As an aside, I usually read the reviewers/subscribers comments on before making my purchases as those readers tend to be more selective/bookwormie folks than the raters on Amazon.


Katie at Faith & Funfetti June 30, 2011 at 4:54 pm

Can’t wait to read this one. I love intertwined stories and was JUST telling the hubby that I need a new book to download on my Nook before this weekend. (Although this one sounds like I’ll be hooked if you read it that quickly! I go into “anti-social mode” when I am in love with a book and can. not. stop. until I finish the whole thing. It’s not normal.)


Jenny July 1, 2011 at 4:55 pm

It’s more normal than you think 😉


Kristen @ Not-So Domesticated June 30, 2011 at 5:40 pm

I just finished Jane Green’s “Promises to Keep.” It’s not the most intellectual of books, but I really enjoyed it. It was sweet and thoughtful and funny… a good beach read! :)


Nikki June 30, 2011 at 5:50 pm

You inspired my friends and I to start a book club (wine, food, and good books? hello!) and I glanced at this one at the bookstore a hundred times! Good to know it’s worth a look!


Kristin @ eat healthy. be happy. live well. June 30, 2011 at 5:54 pm

That sounds like a fantastic book!!! I will definitely check that out. I’m the same way with books. There are so many that I just breeze right through and then am disappointed later that I didn’t savor them. Thanks for the suggestion!


Christena June 30, 2011 at 6:22 pm

ahhhh!! Gap Creek is WONDERFUL! You will love it!


Emily June 30, 2011 at 7:26 pm

I’m so excited! I just realized I have that book on my shelf! I must’ve snatched it from my mom and forgot about it! Yay!!


grace b June 30, 2011 at 6:59 pm

Gah sounds amazing! Going to my to-read list.

Also I’m reading This Life Is In Your Hands by Melissa Coleman you simply HAVE to read it Jenna. It’s basically a real-life Little House on the Prairie! :)


Dee June 30, 2011 at 7:09 pm

Girl, I feel you on the kindle thumb! I’m up to 405 books (give or take a few e-books bought from outside of Amazon). Seriously. //shame//

I know! Someone stop me. Lol.

I’m still going to buy/download this recommendation though. because… yes. 😉


christa June 30, 2011 at 7:23 pm

seriously, when are you going to start reading the Stephanie Plum series?!?!? soooo awesome!


Meghan @ StruggleMuffins June 30, 2011 at 7:24 pm

Ooo the description alone is ever-so-enticing! I’ll add this bad boy to my book list, thanks for the recco – I love your book reviews!


chelsey @ clean eating chelsey June 30, 2011 at 7:33 pm

That looks great – adding it to my list!


French Heart June 30, 2011 at 7:47 pm

Sounds great!


Jennifer June 30, 2011 at 7:53 pm

I LOVE your book reviews! I read “A Paris Wife” on your recommendation and just loved it. Every time I order a new book on my Kindle now, I check your reviews first! Thanks for writing them!


Ashley @ This Is The Place June 30, 2011 at 7:55 pm

Thanks for the recommendation! I am going to Lake Arrowhead this weekend and needed a good book!


M June 30, 2011 at 8:16 pm

Reading “Fly Away Home” right now…. love Jennifer Weiner books. Also, you should try “Savannah Blues” by Mary Kay Andrews. A very, very fun southern book… baking, love story, finding antiques… a fun read!


Marie June 30, 2011 at 8:26 pm

I love your book reviews! It makes for the perfect blog: Running, food, and books!
Not many of my friends read fiction, so it’s great to hear suggestions of new books to read. Thanks!! keep ’em coming! :)


Shari @ Chicago Cuisine Critique June 30, 2011 at 9:01 pm

Sounds great! Thanks for sharing. :)


jenna k June 30, 2011 at 9:05 pm

oh, that sounds like something i would LOVE. i’ll have to put it on my massive lists of book to read after i graduate :)


Sarah Jio June 30, 2011 at 9:06 pm

Wow, thank you so much for this beautiful review, Jenna. It totally made my day (well, my entire week!), to see that you loved VIOLETS so much, and enough to recommend it to your readers. I will be on pins and needles when/if you read my next novel (The Bungalow, out in March!), and will have fingers crossed that you love it as much!! Thanks again, and happy holiday weekend! xo


Katrina June 30, 2011 at 10:18 pm

Thanks! I’ll pick it up soon :)


Aine @ Something to Chew Over July 1, 2011 at 2:24 am

Sounds good! I just finished The Grass is Singing by Doris Lessing last night. Now I’m trying to decide between starting On Beauty by Zadie Smith or Portrait of a Lady by Henry James.


Yolie @ Practising Wellness July 1, 2011 at 3:39 am

This book sounds awesome – I love intertwining tales from past and present – they beautifully illustrate how the experiences of love and loss are universal to human beings, and bind us all together, wherever and whenever we live. I can’t wait to read it – will order it today! Thank you for the recommendation :-) xyx


Sara P July 1, 2011 at 5:03 am

I loved the book as well. I think it is a phenomenal debut by Sarah and I can’t wait to see what she has up her sleeve next. I read an advanced copy a few months ago before the book hit shelves…..I won it on a blog that I read and I was so excited to get my hands on it!!

What is next on your book shelf???


jenna July 1, 2011 at 5:09 am

i can’t keep up with you!! how many books do you read a week?


Fancy July 1, 2011 at 5:44 am

I love your book reviews, I just started Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet based on how much you said you enjoyed it! Thank you Jenna! Have a great day :)


natalie (the sweets life) July 1, 2011 at 9:53 am

just added it to my list! i can’t wait to see what you think of Gap Creek bc that’s been on my list forever!


Suzanne July 1, 2011 at 1:10 pm

I ordered it last night, thanks for the recommendation! So excited to have a book for the long weekend!

If you like stories that intertwine then you’d like Kate Morton. Her first two books, The House at Riverton and The Forgotten Garden, are really good. The Distant Hours wasn’t nearly as good.


Laura @ Cookies vs. Carrots July 1, 2011 at 7:03 pm

I just bought it for my ipad! Can’t wait to start. I just finished The Help, and have been looking for another good book to start.


Jill July 1, 2011 at 8:56 pm

I love your book reviews! I just added this one to my ever growing to-read list on goodreads :)


Monica July 2, 2011 at 6:23 am

I admire your speed reading ability, Jenna! It usually takes me 1-2 weeks to get through a book, even if I really love it, so it’s tough for me to keep up with all of your recommendations (even though I so want to!). I’d love to see a tutorial on how to read as quickly as you do!


Marissa July 2, 2011 at 7:15 am

Thanks for the recommendation — sounds great! I just finished Aimee Bender’s “The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake” and had the same problem, just couldn’t put it down. It would make a great a vacation read :)


Sara July 2, 2011 at 11:00 am

Sounds like a book for me! Have you read many Canadian authors? Mary Lawson is one that I love – Crow Lake and The Other Side of the Bridge are her two books. Great storytelling about rural Ontario towns. Oh and another is Joseph Boyden, his two books are Three Day Road and Through the Black Spruce, both have the 2 intertwined stories of Native Canadians. All 4 books are those “easy” reads because the writing and stories are just amazing. Hope you get a chance to check them out!


Notyet100 July 3, 2011 at 3:30 am

Will read this soon


Maria July 3, 2011 at 10:44 am

I LOVED this book!!! I’ve read a few other books you’ve recommended and as soon as I read your book review for The Violets of March, I powered up my Kindle and bought it. I wish I wouldn’t have read it so fast, it was one of those books that I was sad to finish. Great book recommendation, thanks!!!


Andrea (Run. Learn. Repeat.) July 3, 2011 at 7:14 pm

You made me want to read it! I’m always looking for a good book, and this one sounds like a fun read. Thanks!


Kathleen July 5, 2011 at 8:36 am

So glad you enjoyed it, Jenna! It really is an amazing book and I’m putting it up there in my top 5 of all time. The fact that the Sarah Jio (the author) commented on your review is amazing! Cant wait to tell my book club this story when we discuss the book at our next meeting. Keep the book reviews coming!!!


Gina (Yogattude) July 7, 2011 at 12:27 pm

I LOVED THIS BOOK! I’ve been meaning to pick it up because I’ve read Sarah’s blog on Glamour for years! Thanks for the reminder…I, too, could NOT put it down and read the whole thing last Sunday…in a cozy cabin on a River in WA State with a wood fire and blanket…best way to spend a day reading! Now all I want to do is visit Bainbridge Island. I’ve lived in Seattle for 2 years and haven’t been yet! In fact…I walked past Marion Street yesterday and instantly thought of the book again! I’ve alredy lent it out and suggested many others to read it this summer.


Allie July 8, 2011 at 10:41 am

If you like books in which two stories are intertwined, you would love The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks. Could have been written a little better but the story is really compelling. Check it out!


Ashley @ Hop Skip Jump July 12, 2011 at 6:25 am

Have you read Water For Elephants? It’s has a similiar story line.


Carolyn C. October 1, 2011 at 4:00 pm

Hi Jenna — I usually don’t comment on blogs, but I just wanted to express my thanks for your book recommendations, including The Violets of March. I have three young boys, and I also work, so reading for fun is a luxury for me. Some time ago, I saved this on my library list, and when it became available, I honestly couldn’t remember the context of the book. I was getting ready to turn it back in but was waiting for my boys to collect their findings. So, I picked it up, read the first page and was instantly hooked. The emotion laced text was so pure and deep, and I was touched by the honesty of the characters feelings. Honestly, now that I’m finished, I miss the characters. I don’t have much time to read blogs, but I frequently return to yours because of you and your voracious readers’ book recommendations. Thank you for taking the time to bring back a long lost hobby of mine — reading. Have a great evening!


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Ally July 10, 2012 at 6:51 am

I loved reading this book. I had a hard time putting the book down and finished the book in 1 day. Thanks to you I’m a fan of Sarah Jio. Currently I’m reading the Bungalow. Thanks for the reviews.


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