A Memory Of Violets: A Novel Of London's Flower Sellers

Paperback | February 3, 2015

byHazel Gaynor

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The author of the USA Today and New York Times bestselling novel The Girl Who Came Home has once again created an unforgettable historical novel. Step into the world of Victorian London, where the wealth and poverty exist side by side. This is the story of two long-lost sisters, whose lives take different paths, and the young woman who will be transformed by their experiences.

In 1912, twenty-year-old Tilly Harper leaves the peace and beauty of her native Lake District for London, to become assistant housemother at Mr. Shaw’s Home for Watercress and Flower Girls. For years, the home has cared for London’s flower girls—orphaned and crippled children living on the grimy streets and selling posies of violets and watercress to survive.

Soon after she arrives, Tilly discovers a diary written by an orphan named Florrie—a young Irish flower girl who died of a broken heart after she and her sister, Rosie, were separated. Moved by Florrie’s pain and all she endured in her brief life, Tilly sets out to discover what happened to Rosie. But the search will not be easy. Full of twists and surprises, it leads the caring and determined young woman into unexpected places, including the depths of her own heart.

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From the Publisher

The author of the USA Today and New York Times bestselling novel The Girl Who Came Home has once again created an unforgettable historical novel. Step into the world of Victorian London, where the wealth and poverty exist side by side. This is the story of two long-lost sisters, whose lives take different paths, and the young woman who...

From the Jacket

From the author of the USA Today bestseller The Girl Who Came Home comes an unforgettable historical novel that tells the story of two long-lost sisters—orphaned flower sellers—and a young woman who is transformed by their experiences"For little sister. . . . I will never stop looking for you."1876. Among the filth and depravity of Cov...

Hazel Gaynor's 2014 debut novelThe Girl Who Came Home—A Novel of the Titanicwas aNew York TimesandUSA Todaybestseller.A Memory of Violetsis her second novel.Hazel writes a popular guest blog 'Carry on Writing' for national Irish writing website writing.ie and contributes regular feature articles for the site, interviewing authors such ...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:432 pages, 8 × 5.31 × 0.97 inPublished:February 3, 2015Publisher:HarperCollinsLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0062316893

ISBN - 13:9780062316899

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Customer Reviews of A Memory Of Violets: A Novel Of London's Flower Sellers

Reviews

Rated 4 out of 5 by from Loved it! I loved this book! It is somewhat predictable, but worth it! It is uplifting, a nice feel good book! A book that reminds us all that there are still good people in the world. Loved it!
Date published: 2015-08-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A memory of violets What a heartwarming story. The characters were so vivid, their journeys touched me on numerous levels...read this!
Date published: 2015-07-08
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A Memory of Violets A lovely historical fiction about young girls in London. Very nice period piece and likeable characters.
Date published: 2015-07-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A poignant tale from start to finish A Memory of Violets is set in London during the 1800's. It is a story of the enduring love between two sisters. Florrie and her little sister Rosie are young children who live in extreme poverty and sell flowers in some of the roughest markets in London. The first section of the book is heartwrenching and tragic as the sisters are separated and become lost to each other. This sets off a life-long quest on Florrie's part to find her sister and make amends for losing her. The two follow very different paths in life. Years later, in 1912, Tilly Harper, takes a job in a school for flower girls. In her room she discovers Florries old diary. Intrigued, she seeks to answer some of the questions Florrie had about her sister's whereabouts The author did a very good job of bringing their dire existence to life, stirring all kinds of emotions. This novel is a very vivid tale, rich with emotion, compelling characters, and wonderful twists and surprises throughout. I'll definitely read more books by this fabulous writer. I truly loved this book!
Date published: 2015-06-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A gentle read 3.5/5 It's been bitterly cold in my neck of the woods this past week. Which is okay if I don't have to venture out - I am more than happy to curl up in my chair with a good story and look out at the snow! This weekend found me curled up with Hazel Gaynor's newest novel, A Memory of Violets. A Memory of Violets is a historical piece set in a time frame I enjoy - actually two time frames - 1876 and 1912 England. 1876. Florrie, her younger sister Rosie and their mother are flower sellers on the mean streets of London. When their mother dies, eight year old Florrie attempts to look after her blind sister. But the fates have different plans....Rosie disappears in the blink of an eye....and Florrie desperately searches for her. 1912. Tilly Harper accepts a housekeeping position at the Training Home for Watercress and Flower Girls. It's a home for crippled, orphaned destitute flower girls saved from those same mean streets. When Tilly goes to unpack her clothes into the wardrobe, she finds an old wooden box, a journal and many pressed flowers. Now, as readers, we're privy to both past and present as the chapters alternate. We can easily see the connections even as Tilly reads her way through the past. Knowing the outcome early on (although Gaynor threw in an extra serendipitous connection I didn't see coming) did not detract from my enjoyment of this historical piece at all. I was quite fascinated with the main premise of Gaynor's novel and found myself on the Internet looking up this up. On finishing the novel and reading the author's notes, I found that Gaynor had based her novel on what I had discovered. John Groom did indeed open a flower girl mission in the setting described. Many of the details of Gaynor's story pay homage to Groom. A Memory of Violets is a gentle, sentimental, heartwarming read, comforting in its sedate pacing. Love, family and friends lost and found, all wrapped in the fragrance of flowers - and a wee bit of magic.
Date published: 2015-02-18

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Editorial Reviews

“Historical details and the unique perspective of penniless, physically challenged young girls could make Gaynor’s second historical novel a good book club choice. A tidy ending and sweet romance will satisfy readers hoping to exhale a long, contented sigh as they finish the last page.”