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My name is Chelsey and I am the creator of Charming Chelsey's! I read and review anything and everything that I find to be "charming." I accept ARCs or already released books for review, and I'm also available to participate in any blog tours or book reveals too. If anything, please don't hesitate to email me any time for any reason at: charmingchelseys(at)gmail(dot)com

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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Book Review: A Bloom In Winter

A Bloom in Winter (Summerset Abbey, #2)Author: T.J. Brown
Publication Date: March 5, 2013
Publisher: Gallery Books
Series: Summerset Abbey # 2

The highly anticipated second installment in the Summerset Abbey series, which picks up just after the climatic conclusion of book one. After Prudence’s desperate marriage and move to Devonshire, sisters Rowena and Victoria fear they have lost their beloved friend forever. Guilt-ridden and remorseful, Rowena seeks comfort from a daring flyboy and embraces the most dangerous activity the world has ever seen, and Victoria defies her family and her illness to make her own dream occupation as a botanist come true. As England and the world step closer to conflict, the two young women flout their family, their upbringing, and their heritage to seize a modern future of their own making.


“On the long journey home, Rowena puzzled over the conversation she and Sebastian had in the garden. Had he harbored feelings for Pru? Maybe But now that Prudence had married, it didn’t really matter, did it?” – Finished Copy pg. 23

 
“Mr. Herbert cleared his throat. ‘I will speak plainly, Miss Buxton, if that is indeed your name, so there will be no further doubt. There is no room for women in the sciences, my dear young lady, except perhaps as a help to their husbands. Women just are not suited for such work. Their brains are not made for it. And quite frankly, it will be a cold day before The Botanist’s Quarterly accepts the contributions of a woman over those of a man who may be a husband and a father needing to earn money to take care of his family. I don’t wish to be cruel, but that is the truth.’” – Finished Copy pg. 65

 
“‘Thank you, Sebastian. You’re a very nice man, do you know that? I think Prudence was a fool.’” – Finished Copy pg. 101

 
"Martha tilted her head sideways and regarded Victoria, ‘We have two organizations because many women are afraid to do the real work of the cause. The Suffragettes for Female Equality is the main organization. The Women’s Equality League is the more exclusive, lesser-known group. It’s for those workers who have proven their loyalty and bravery. I suppose if you’re to work for us, you’re going to have to know.’” – Finished Copy pg. 111

 
"Rowena tilted her head back and looked at the stars in the winter sky. ‘Yes. Soon I’ll be able to fly in the sky all by myself.’ She smiled. ‘I can’t wait for that day.’” – Finished Copy pg. 126

This amazing series continues with another brilliant installment. At the end of Summerset Abbey, Prudence was married off and left town leaving Rowena and Victoria still under the care of their Aunt Charlotte. The girls face many more challenges in this book, just as they did in the first and we explore feminist action and rights once again. This book picks up right where the last one left off, and I was so happy for this. I thought I was going to die after finishing the first book in this series because I couldn’t stand to be left in the dark as to what was going to happen to each of the girls of Summerset. This is a series that can really appeal to adult readers and those that enjoy young adult as well. The writing and pace are consistent throughout both books and the characters are easy to fall in love with!

 
We see all three young ladies again in this novel, just not at the same place this time. I felt just as sad and lonely as Victoria and Rowena at the thought of Prudence not being around. I was happy to find out that we do see Prudence in this book and are aware of what is going on in her life as well. The book concentrates on all three of them, just like before, but really gears towards what is going to happen with Rowena and Victoria next, or at least that’s how I felt. Rowena and Victoria are both very ambitious and extremely courageous, especially for women of their time. Victoria is still trying to pursue the career of botany, just like her father, and Rowena longs to fly across the sky all on her own. Being a feminist myself, these books really speak to me. I am reading about brave and highly capable women who weren’t allowed a say in their time, no matter how much money they had. In this book, Victoria pursues a Women’s Suffragette Society. I was stuck to those particular pages like glue.

 
Now for my favorite character: Sebastian. I have loved Sebastian since he first loved Prudence! He returns in the second installment and is just as divine and as handsome as he was before. He still harbors feelings for Prudence in this story, even though she is already married. I was so drawn to his character in the first novel and wanted so desperately for him and Prudence to end up together. He interacts more with Rowena in this second installment and I will leave it up to you to find out if anything transpires there?! There is some more romance in this novel and it is just as heated and as secretive as it was before!

 
This is a series that will forever sit on my shelf and is definitely one that I could see myself reading over and over again!

 
***A HUGE thank you to the publishers at Gallery Books for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review***





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