Where is Melissa and what have you done with her?  Hello, my name is Melissa and I may be addicted to reading. Seriously.  I was listening to a podcast recently and they shared a great site called Blogging for Books for bloggers who like to read.  They give out review copies to bloggers, retailers, librarians and media outlets in exchange for an honest review. It’s fun to receive my free book in the mail. As long as you follow up in a timely manner with a review, they keep sending books. After you register, you can go through the list to see what books are available for review.  It’s not an extensive list and limited to Penguin Random House and Crown Publishing Group but there are a variety of categories from lifestyle, cooking, fiction and non-fiction, business and faith.

This month’s review was The Tea Planter’s Wife by Dinah Jefferies.  Set in 1920’s Ceylon, about a young Englishwoman who marries a charming tea plantation owner and widower, only to discover he’s keeping terrible secrets about his past, including what happened to his first wife, that lead to devastating consequences.

I am usually not attracted to historical non-fiction or “period” books.  I thought the description of the book was intriguing and I am glad I took a chance on this book.

The author is very descriptive and I found myself transported to a 1920’s tea plantation.  It literally made me crave tea — so I enjoyed several pots of PG Tips during this read.

It’s easy to read and once I started, I couldn’t put it down.  It takes a little while to get past the set up of relationships, but once that was done, it was a quick read.

I loved the character development and toward the end I was in tears after all the secrets were revealed.  There were tons of secrets!  I wanted to shake people and say, “Snap out of it!  Why didn’t you say something!” So, it was tedious at times.

The back of the book includes the author’s explanation of how she came to write the book, Q&A conversations with the author, and a reader’s guide — so it’s perfect for book clubs.  I gave it 4 out of five stars.

Now, I am on to our book club selection this month which you can read about here.