Title: Haunting Violet
Author: Alyxandra Harvey
Release Date: July 9th 2011
Taken from Goodreads
Violet Willoughby doesn't believe in ghosts. But they believe in her. After spending years participating in her mother's elaborate ruse as a fraudulent medium, Violet is about as skeptical as they come in all matters supernatural. Now that she is being visited by a very persistent ghost, one who suffered a violent death, Violet can no longer ignore her unique ability. She must figure out what this ghost is trying to communicate, and quickly because the killer is still on the loose.
Afraid of ruining her chance to escape her mother's scheming through an advantageous marriage, Violet must keep her ability secret. The only person who can help her is Colin, a friend she's known since childhood, and whom she has grown to love. He understands the true Violet, but helping her on this path means they might never be together. Can Violet find a way to help this ghost without ruining her own chance at a future free of lies?
It was so nice to put down the free Kindle books I've been ploughing through over the last weeks, and get back to the world of well-written, properly edited paper books! Don't get me wrong, I love the Kindle app, but I think you really do get what you pay for when it comes to some of the freebies!
Haunting Violet was a great read! It is centred around the character of Violet Willoughby, a girl who has a new-found talent for seeing the dead. For years her mother has swindled grieving patrons at fake seances. Violet's mother was a brilliantly horrible piece of work: one of those characters you could thoroughly enjoy loathing!
Violet herself was great. I always like characters who love the books I love, and Jane Eyre is one of my all-time favourites! I'm not usually one for historical settings, but the nineteenth century setting of this novel provided the perfect atmosphere. I loved the parlour tricks the group used to simulate the visiting spirits, and the bitchy guests at the manor were brilliant little caricatures.
The romantic element of the book was predictable, but sweet. It was a bit of a shame that the fella's name was Colin, though. Poor dab. Much more enjoyable and dynamic was the friendship between Violet and her plump and energetic friend, Elizabeth.
I think, in a lot of ways, this was a brave book. The Victorian English setting, the old fashioned names and customs, as well as the “murder mystery” aspect of the narrative, are all things which probably should alienate a lot of younger readers. However, Harvey manages to balance these things with relatable, fairly modern characters, a healthy dose of paranormal intrigue, and a sweet romantic element.
Thoroughly enjoyable! Oh, and I love the dress the girl on the book cover is wearing. He he. Four stars!