Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The Tea Rose Trilogy: Book 1

The Tea Rose by Jennifer Donnelly
My co-worker lent me this book, and if I'm being honest I wasn't really looking forward to reading it, but felt completely obligated too. The book itself was a little long (over 500 pages), and while length isn't really a problem after some of the books I've read recently I was craving a little more fluff. Also while the book is historical fiction which I do enjoy, it takes place at the end of the 19th century, which is not a time period a read frequently.

I did suck it up to read the book, and am definitely glad I did because I wound up loving the book. The book is told from the point of view of Fionna Finnegan a factory working growing up in England in the 1890s. Of course, she's in love the a boy, Joe Bristow, her next door neighbor and a fruit seller. The book itself has a bit of romance, as well as some action and a bit of adventure. It winds up being a bit of a rags to riches story.

I did have a few minor complaints though. One of the back stories were the murders of Jack the Ripper. I do understand that this was what was happening at this time, but I think some of the murder scenes weren't necessarily needed. Also, I felt the book was a bit too predictable. And the book was filled with those almost painful scenes you see in a lot of romance stories. You know, similar to movies where they show both the girl and boy pick up the phone to call, but hang up since they assume the other one doesn't want to talk. I understand they are done to add a bit of suspense, but they always just feel so frustrating to me!

And remember how I was complaining about how long the book was? Well I started it last Thursday, so once I go into it I didn't want to put it down. Of course, having a four day weekend helped the situation.

The book is part of a trilogy, the second of which is called The White Rose. I could be wrong, but I don't believe the final book has been published yet. I would definitely read the rest of the books in the trilogy, mainly because I can't wait to hear what happens to the rest of the characters. I would recommend this book, especially to those who enjoy reading historical fiction.



  1. I read that book somewhat recently too, and had similar reactions to yours. I enjoyed it, but thought some parts could have been written differently. I have not read the second, and didn't realize that there will be a third...I'll have to look for it!

  2. I've never heard of this one and it sounds pretty good! I'll have to check it out!