As an avid reader, I have seen many examples of what works and what doesn’t in the world of fiction. I also typically avoid romance stories as I find them formulaic, very “plug and play” with little to no originality or creativity. Charmyra E. Fleming’s The Violet Rose not only avoids these trappings, it pulls together a story that works on multiple levels.
From the main character to those that surround her, this novella is full of rich, deep characters that are also relatable. The plot goes everywhere except where you think it will so there is no predictability to suffer through. You will root for your favorites and against their nemeses from the beginning to the end of the story. Fleming has managed to wring fresh ideas and scenes out of a typically overwrought world, showcasing what an up-and-coming generation of authors have to bring to the genre. And if you are a Prince fan as I am, you will enjoy the nods to His Royal Badness throughout the text and by the end, you’ll want to flip right back to the beginning to catch any clues and subtleties you might have missed. I have never seen a romance tale described as a page-tuner, but that’s exactly what this one is. And once you start turning these pages, you won’t ever want to stop!
Reviewed by Denise Ervin