I swear I will do better at this, LOL it seems that I have been away for a long while. I know I have mentioned the whole surgery thing. Well I had the surgery in March and I am still recovering. I NEVER thought that it would honestly take this long, and the hardest aspect of everything for me has been the emotional, mental bit. I am so hard on myself, and just honestly feel so worthless all the time. You might be asking why? Well I cannot walk, so I am not able to get around my house, town etc and I am a SAHM. I am not able to take care of my two awesome kids, my pets, the home or my devoted husband. It has taken it’s toll, so I have been away… HUGE SIGH but I am here now, so shall we talk about some books instead of a huge ass pity party for myself???
The first book up is part of a series that I have talked about before, I do believe it was the last book nook that I did. It is part of the Tea Rose series. I love this series, Jennifer Donnelly is a great writer, and this series is nothing like her best seller A Northern Light. With that said the series has 3 books, and they are all well over 700 pages a piece, so it is quite an undertaking. LOL! I have actually finished the series so I will talk about them both, but on their own as they do go together, but each can stand on it;s own as well if that even makes sense. This one is book 2 of 3 and it is called the Winter Rose.
This novel starts in 1900, and the main character of this one is a young woman, India. She is graduating medical school as a Doctor. India does come from a family of class, and money, but she has turned her back on the money to follow her heart and do what she loves. We see India graduating from the London School of Medicine for Women, against the many opinions of her professors she does set out to start working at a clinic in the city’s poorest area in East London. Her life’s ambition is to help those that are not able to hep themselves. She is trying to do everything in her power to make a difference. It is on these dark and grim streets that India comes to meet Sid Malone. India not only meets Sid, but she does save his life. Sid Malone is one of London’s most dangerous and notorious gangsters. You will see how Donnelly has painted Sid Malone as a hard, wounded man. Malone is the opposite of India’s aristocratic fiancé, Freddie Lytton, a rising star in the House of Commons.Though Malone represents all she despises, India finds herself unwillingly drawn ever closer to him, intrigued by his hidden, mysterious past. India tries to fight her feelings for SId, as he tries to hide from her, fighting with everything he has to not fall in love with India. He does not want to drag India into his life. He is not proud of what he does, but it is all he knows. I have to say that this one is my favorite out of the three in the series. Some have said that this is a predictable book, but alas I have to disagree. I was on the edge of my seat, turning pages well into the wee early morning hours hoping to find out more. I do love how the characters from the first book are also in this book, just as lesser characters. There are so many story lines in this novel and I cannot go into them without giving too much away. What did I enjoy the most? I love how Donnelly brings her characters and scenery to life. I like how she finds the least likely option of the story point and uses that, and not always what you want or expect. What did I like least? Freddie. I hated his character, hated what he did throughout, LOL He is the villian of the book and I know that Donnelly has made him to be this way so kudos to her. I just didn’t like some of his parts, they were a little wordy and I just didn’t like that he had to say. With that said, get all three, rad them, and you will not be disappointed at all.
I give this one of the series an A- It is my favorite of the three
I have to say I was stuck on this book for awhile. I liked it, please do not think that I didn’t, but out of the three this one is my least favorite one. I think that is because I really hated the main character Willa. I just thought she was a dramatic, spoiled, and very self serving. She is not the villian at all, and I really do not think that Donnelly intended her to come of as a spoiled brat, but to me she did. This made it hard to get into this book. With that said this was a great conclusion to the series, alls I can say is wow. I will try to give you a brief overview without totally giving the main twists away.
The Wild Rose takes place a few years after The Winter Rose. In this one you see Seamus Finnegan as a famous explorer. After an accident on Kilimanjaro that leaves his friend and love, Willa Alden hurt physically and emotionally, he must try to pick up the pieces of his life and try and move on. A decision that he made on WIlla’s behalf has her fleeing for Tibet, and leaving her love, and her family. Seamus has no idea where she went to, and is left holding the ball so to speak. He returns to London, and he is the one that has to tell her family of the accident, and the decision he made for Willa. He is also left telling them she ran away, and has no idea where to. Just like in the other books you will see what is going on with other members of the Finnegan and Bristow family. Fiona still has her tea empire, supports local charities, fights for women’s right to vote she is also taking care of her family. Joe is still trying to change the world through politics to help the poor on the east end. Their eldest, Katie shows a political and journalistic bent to fight for the sufferage movement and sets the way to becoming the first female MP. I love that Donnelly has kept true to the History of everything. he love of History really shines in this novel.
Seamus meets a really great girl and he knows she would make the perfect wife. He knows that he is not going to see Willa ever again as it has been years and he has not seen or heard from her, so you see him trying to force himself to try and fall in love. He really does care for her, but he doesn’t love her like he did Willa, but you will see the two marry out of necessity and try to make a go at life together. Just as they tie the knot a funeral brings Willa into Seamus and Jenny’s life. War is upon them, and Seamus goes off to war in the Navy. Through hard work, dedication, bravery and sheer luck he does become a naval captain, but he is away from his new found family for years.
The book covers many years. This is really different than the others, they didn’t span this many years. The book carries us through the war, coming home, spies, intrigue, dishonesty, affairs and heroism. It is a great historical read, she does a great job carrying that through this novel.
What did I like? I like how this one shows more of the other characters. I love seeing how their lives are bumping along, and how they are all tied to one another. What did I not like? Willa. I also didnt like the unfaithfulness. I cannot say enough how great this series is. Really try them out, you will not be let down.
I give this one a B. I had a hard time getting into this one, but harder to put it down once I was into it.