Thank you to St. Martins Press and Martine Bailey for a copy of An Appetite for Violets in exchange for an honest review. This story reminded me somewhat of Downton Abbey about one hundred and fifty years ago in the past. I have one copy to giveaway.
Carina needs to get away from England. But why? She decides to take Jesmire the Ladies’ maid, Biddie the undercook, and a footman. Then Mr. Pars the caretaker accompanies them all as the chaperone. Biddy Leigh asks these very questions as she is asked to leave the English countryside to travel to France and then onto Italy. She has plans to marry her sweetheart Jem. Mr. Pars the caretaker sweetens the deal for her to go with a bonus upon return. Her friend Mrs. Garrison also advises her to go and enjoy this adventure and to write down her journey in the Cook’s Jewel. As the journey proceeds Carina asks Biddy to take her place so she could conceal her true condition. Biddy becomes more than a cook but a great lady. Will she be able to help Carina and carry off the deception? Will there be a happy ending for everyone?
I enjoyed this novel. I did find the pacing slow in some places. I wanted to root for the character of Biddy and her success throughout the story. Carina is someone that I felt sorry for with her true circumstances which are not revealed immediately. The ending was a complete surprise for me. I felt the pacing of the story was a little slow in some places. I loved the entries from the Cook’s Jewel that are interspersed throughout the novel. These entries add an interesting dimension to the story.
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