16 March 2020

The Grace Kelly Dress AND The Henna Artist - Book Reviews

The Grace Kelly Dress by Brenda Janowitz
Publication date: March 3, 2020
Pages: 384 pages
Genre: Historical fiction, contemporary romance
Rating: 3.5/5 stars ✰✰✰✰
Strengths: Great characters, believable plot
Weaknesses: Predictable

I really enjoyed this book. The journey of the dress from 1950s Paris, to 1982 and then 2020 in/around New York told a beautiful story of three generations of women. The good things and bad things in their lives made them more believable characters.

While I wanted to pick a favorite character, I really liked each of them for different reasons. My favorite part was probably when they all tied together at the end.

Overall, I gave this book 3.5 out of 5 stars. It was a great light read for nearly any adult age. I liked the references from 1950s Paris, 1982, and the current day bride-to-be. While it didn't have a lot of steamy sex, there were other adult themes.

The Henna Artist by Alka Joshi
Publication date: March 3, 2020
Pages: 368 pages
Genre: Historical fiction, India
Rating: 3.5/5 stars ✰✰✰✰
Strengths: Great story and main characters
Weaknesses: Some loose ends

This book got me excited about the local India festival in August again. The descriptions of much of the Indian culture were beautifully detailed. The prologue threw me off for a bit, but I loved when it tied in with the rest of the story later in the book.

The story of Lakshmi's determination and hard work to overcome her obstacles was inspiring. And watching her willingness to keep adjusting those plans made my heart happy in the end. The plight of women in the 1950s in India was just as heart-wrenching as it is in many cases in current culture.

I gave this book at least 3.5/5 stars - maybe even 3.75? The story felt very relatable even more than 50 years later. The aspects of Indian culture and castes that I may not fully understand were explained clearly with what I needed to know.

Thank you to Mira, Harlequin, and Netgalley for the advance copies of these books to read in exchange for my honest reviews. 


Shea Lennon said...

Both of these sound good although it's The Henna Artist that feel more drawn to. I'd like to learn more about Indian culture, and I love doing that through story.

Mom Among Chaos said...

I've been reading more! I just finished Lovely Little Things which I highly recommend!

Rachel said...

These sound interesting!! The Grace Kelly Dress book would be my choice. I'm glad you have more time to read right now.