Dearest Josephine by Caroline George – Spoiler Free Review

Publisher: Thomas Nelson

Publication Date: February 02, 2021

Genre: Historical, Contemporary, Romance

Adventure Rating: 4 Stars

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Caroline George sweeps readers up into two different time periods with an unexpected love story that prompts us to reimagine what it means to be present with the people we love.

2020: Chocolate and Earl Grey tea can’t fix Josie De Clare’s horrible year. She mourned the death of her father and suffered a teen-life crisis, which delayed her university plans. But when her father’s will reveals a family-owned property in Northern England, Josie leaves London to find clarity at the secluded manor house. While exploring the estate, she discovers two-hundred-year-old love letters written by an elusive novelist, all addressed to someone named Josephine. And then she discovers a novel in which it seems like she’s the heroine…

1820: Novelist Elias Roch loves a woman he can never be with. Born the bastard son to a nobleman and cast out from society, Elias seeks refuge in his mind with the quirky heroine who draws him into a fantasy world of scandal, betrayal, and unconditional love. Convinced she’s his soulmate, Elias writes letters to her, all of which divulge the tragedy and trials of his personal life.

As fiction blurs into reality, Josie and Elias must decide: How does one live if love can’t wait? Separated by two hundred years, they fight against time to find each other in a story of her, him, and the novel written by the man who loves her.

*Thank you to the author for sending me a copy!*

This was such a sweet story!! It was a bit like a breath of fresh air! Or a walk in the spring. Told in a series of emails, texts, letters, and a found manuscript, makes this story a very unique read. It was a bit slower than what I’m used to, definitely a historical fiction feel. Which I like, don’t get me wrong, I just had to read a fast paced book at the same time as reading this one! But that’s just me!

I loved Josephine’s character! She was quirky and I liked reading about her adventure in Caldwaller Manor and fixing it up. I loved reading about her journey in discovering the town around her as well as discovering Elias, who wrote to her 200 years ago! They were basically letters about his life and how he loves her. *insert tear filled eyes here*. I loved him. Very Mr. Darcy worthy! Well done Caroline! She also did amazingly well switching from modern day language to 1800s tone and writing. I want to visit the English countryside now more than ever!

So, I will say, the ending surprised me. And I liked it. It was a story within a story within a story. I really want this to be a movie! It would be so incredibly cute!! If you are looking for a slower, beautiful, sweet romance, definitely check this one out!

White as Silence, Red as Song Review (Spoiler Free)

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Author: Alessandro D’ Avenia

Publisher: Thomas Nelson

Publication Date: September 4, 2018

Genre: YA, Contemporary, Romance

My Rating: 4 Stars

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Synopsis

“I was born on the first day of school, and I grew up and old in just two hundred days . . .”

Sixteen-year-old Leo has a way with words, but he doesn’t know it yet. He spends his time texting, polishing soccer maneuvers, and killing time with Niko and Silvia. Until a new teacher arrives and challenges him to give voice to his dreams.

And so Leo is inspired to win over the red-haired beauty, Beatrice. She doesn’t know Leo exists, but he’s convinced that his dream to win her over will come true. When Leo lands in the hospital and learns that Beatrice has been admitted too, his mission to be there for her will send him on a thrilling but heartbreaking journey. He wants to help her but doesn’t know how—and his dream of love will force him to grow up fast.

Having already sold over a million copies in Italy, Alessandro D’Avenia’s debut novel is considered the Italian The Fault in Our Stars. Now available in English for the first time, this rich, funny, and heartwarming coming-of-age tale asks us to explore the meaning—and the cost—of friendship, and shows us what happens when suffering bursts into the world of teenagers and renders the world of adults speechless.

Plot. I was very pleasantly surprised by this book. This was pitched as the Italian version of The Fault in Our Stars. I hated that book. (Please don’t hate me!!) But let me tell you, I LOVED this book! I cried. I NEVER cry while reading. I have no idea why. I just don’t. But this had the hope that The Fault in Our Stars was missing for me. I had so many feels! And it was just a beautiful story!

Characters. Leo was actually really sweet. The way he talked about his love and the way he treated her was just unheard of in today’s time. He wrote songs and letters to her. It was seriously the cutest thing ever! And I loved how steady Silvia was there for Leo. She was always there when he fell or needed something. I also adored his teacher! What an awesome guy to get involved and to care for his students. More teachers should be like that.

Final Thoughts. This was a relatively short book, but it was beautifully written. Again, I was super surprised how much I loved this book. I normally do not go for contemporaries, I usually find them boring. But this one had some missing piece that isn’t there in other books. I loved the overall message of this book, to never give up on your dreams, but to maybe reexamine them sometimes, and make them into something better and stronger.

Happy Adventuring

*I received a finished copy from TLC book tours for an honest review! I’m on the Instagram tour for this on September 12!*

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