Tuesday, April 24, 2012

A Light on the Veranda by Ciji Ware

I enjoy Ciji Ware’s novels, and I really enjoyed reading Midnight on Julia Street last year.  After the book ended, I did wonder what happened to Daphne Duvallon (sister of the male lead) after her dramatic exit from her wedding in Chapter One.  A Light on the Veranda solves that mystery and gives Daphne’s backstory as well as her life after the wedding disaster.
Daphne Duvallon is a classical harpist in New York City, but she is fired for taking off the weekend of a very important concert to play at the wedding of her brother King to Corlis McCullough in Natchez, Mississippi.  While in Natchez, Daphne decides to stay for a while and try her dream at playing jazz harp in a band.  It helps that she has met a handsome photographer, Sim Hopkins.  Unfortunately her old finance, Jack Ebert is also on the scene to make sure that Daphne does not have her happily ever after.
While in Natchez, Daphne starts to “time slip” to the late eighteenth century to the life of her ancestress, a tragic harpist named Daphne Whitaker.  With a mad mother and father, Daphne Whitaker looks for love in all of the wrong places and does what she can just to survive.
I really enjoyed A Light on the Veranda; I liked it even more than the Midnight on Julia Street.  It was fun to read more about some of my favorite characters from Midnight on Julia Street, but A Light on the Veranda can stand alone without having read the prior book.  I am a great fan of “time slip” novels and while Daphne Whitaker’s story was tragic, it was very, very interesting to read about the history of Natchez from the visit by Marie Antoinette’s cousin, Louise-Philippe, the duc d’Orleans, to the devastating tornado of 1840.  The plantations and mansions of Natchez and the surrounding area are true stars of the novel.  I really would love to visit there now! 
Overall, A Light on the Veranda is a wonderful time-slip novel with riveting stories both in the present and the past and delightful characters.  I enjoyed the love story between Daphne Duvallon and Sim.  To read more about this novel, check out this great discussion with CijiWare that was posted on Laura’s Reviews last month.
Book Source:  Review Copy from Sourcebooks.  Thank-you!

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