Release Date: November 3, 2015
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Genre: Women's Literature | Contemporary
Lucy Alling makes a living selling rare books, often taking suspicious measures to reach her goals. When her unorthodox methods are discovered, Lucy's secret ruins her relationship with her boss and her boyfriend James—leaving Lucy in a heap of hurt, and trouble. Something has to change; she has to change.
In a sudden turn of events, James's wealthy grandmother Helen hires Lucy as a consultant for a London literary and antiques excursion. Lucy reluctantly agrees and soon discovers Helen holds secrets of her own. In fact, Helen understands Lucy's predicament better than anyone else.
As the two travel across England, Lucy benefits from Helen's wisdom, as Helen confronts the ghosts of her own past. Everything comes to a head at Haworth, home of the Brontë sisters, where Lucy is reminded of the sisters' beloved heroines, who, with tenacity and resolution, endured—even in the midst of change.
Now Lucy must go back into her past in order to move forward. And while it may hold mistakes and regrets, she will prevail—if only she can step into the life that's been waiting for her all along.
A touching redemption story that features a bookworm. How can I say no to that?! Plus did you read the blurb of THE BRONTË PLOT? Did it pique your interest? Like what suspicious measure is Lucy Alling doing to sell her books? Once I got started, it was impossible for me to put down the book because I HAVE to know. The plot is thick with lies, sleight of hand, coincidences, and second chances.
Let me start with the charming Lucy Alling. Immediately I formed a connection with her because she loves books! Her apartment is sparse of furniture but is brimming with stories. Take her table for example, instead of spindles for legs, it's made of her favorite books and are sorted in 4 categories that reflects her life. As the story moved forward, my opinion of Lucy changed several times. I liked her, loved her, hated her, she made me feel a range of emotions that ended with begrudging admiration. In short, she's an effective character designed to draw a significant reaction from the readers.
The Women's Lit part is just as good. This novel is another demonstration that (maybe) there's no such thing as coincidence and that things happen for and not to us. THE BRONTË PLOT has some deep family issues that explain Lucy's situation and why she's doing what she does. This is where the story also branches out to her boyfriend's grandmother who has an odd connection to Lucy and it's this link that had them flying to England to find some closure in their respective lives. The parallelism between Lucy's life and Brontë's stories are well-drawn although part of me thinks Lucy is trying too hard to "follow" the Brontë tales to make things more "dramatic". Anyway, for a Brontë based novel, the romance is watered down although love is its main driver.
I had a good time with THE BRONTË PLOT, it's filled with cool trivia not just about the Brontës, but about the literary world in general especially ones surrounding the classics and Bloomsbury. The individual character stories are lovely and can be emotional at times. On the downside, I was hoping for more to explain or justify Lucy's deception because I found her way and reason to be so... simple when the blurb made it seem bigger than what it actually is. So if you're planning to read this book, don't expect too much on that front. Just focus on the plot and ignore the "mystery", you will enjoy the book better that way.
I love Indian food! This is one of my favorite foodie
moment in the book.
"Goodies." Lucy laughed as she picked over them and took her first bite of the Raj Kachori. "I think it's lobser and fish inside and the chutney's amazing."
If you're like me and enjoy food with your fiction, then better join Unconventional Book Views' Thirsty Thursday Hungry Hearts meme.