Review & photo by Kimberly, Kid Lit Exchange reviewer, @whatkreads on Instagram
The Wondrous World of Violet Barnaby by Jenny Lundquist
(Aladdin ~ September 2017)
Thank you to @Kidlitexchange for providing a review copy of this book. All opinions are my own.
Jenny Lundquist just hit it out of the park with this sequel. I adored Izzy Malone (The Charming Life of Izzy Malone), but I fell in love with Violet Barnaby. Her emotions were raw, heartbreaking and incredibly relatable. At the end of the first book, we learned that Violet’s dad was remarrying. This book picks up right where that left off. We watch Violet deal with moving, adjusting to a new stepfamily and struggling to find where exactly she belongs. She’s also trying to navigate her first crush and learning to open up to her friends about all of her feelings.
Violet lost her mother to cancer and this part of the story is what truly touched me. Upon moving, she discovers a letter from her mom talking about the difficulties of enjoying Christmas after loosing a loved one. Her mother left her a checklist of activities to complete to help her make new happy memories and enjoy the holiday season. She talks about the pain that follows death. How it never goes away, but it eventually gets easier to manage. She referred to it as the Terrible Beautiful Ache. I myself have lost two loved ones close to Christmas. That heartache still lingers every December.
I highly recommend this series. It effortlessly covers a ton of issues in a delicate and smooth manner. It’s a definite must buy for me and one that I will look forward to reading with my daughter one day.
You can also follow our tags on Instagram and Twitter to see all of our reviews!