Lately, I've been on a reading frenzy, just wanting to find and read good books. I was at Barnes and Noble earlier this week, wandering the aisles to find a good book. Nothing on the best seller racks called to me, but I came upon The Tea Rose, by Jennifer Donnelly, on one of their tables. The heroine is Fiona Finnegan, a young girl who lives in East London during the time of Jack the Ripper. She has dreams of opening a shop with her childhood sweet heart, Joe Bristow, when tragedy befalls her and her family. She flees to New York, where she eventually becomes one of the wealthiest women through her successful tea business. However, unfinished personal business brings her back to London, where she has to confront her past.
Since most historical fiction books I've read take place during Tudor or Renassaince eras, it was really enjoyable to read about a different period and New York City. When Fiona first arrives in NYC, she finds her uncle who owns a grocery store in Chelsea, about a block from my old office. Obviously, Chelsea looks quite different from the late 1800s. Shoot, it looks pretty different from just 3 years ago, but I could totally picture the city in that time. Anyway, I recommend this book to those who like historical fiction, reading about strong, driven women, and like a touch of romance and suspense along the way. There is a sequal to the book, which I look forward to reading, called The Winter Rose.