Thursday, August 22, 2013

Review: A Veil of Glass and Rain by Petra F. Bagnardi



I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for my honest review.

A Veil of Glass and Rain is a beautifully written, emotionally evocative book that I definitely recommend.   The author is, I believe, European, and most of the book takes place in Rome, and the novel had a very European flavor to it that I found refreshing and different from my usual read.  It’s hard to describe exactly what I mean, but it reminded me of other French and Italian novels I’ve read—there was a relaxed sensuality to the writing, not only in the love scenes (though those were definitely sensual!) but in the descriptions of scenery, food, emotions, and more.  It also reminded me a bit of some of my favorite Italians films, like Stealing Beauty.  The author definitely writes with a filmmaker’s eye.

So on to the plot…A Veil of Glass and Rain is the refreshingly simple story of two childhood friends who’ve always been meant for each other, but who’ve been separated by circumstance and by their own emotional baggage over the years, and now reconnect as adults.  The story flashes back and forth between the present and memories of important moments in Brina and Eagen’s pasts.  Since most of the story is told in Brina’s POV, she was the character we really got to know the most, and I thought the author was very brave to create a female lead who can be extremely emotional fragile.  It can be taboo to craft a “weak” female character, but by the end of the book, Brina doesn’t seem weak—she seems like a sensitive soul who is in touch with and finally taking ownership of her own emotions.

Although I already alluded to this above, I have to say that I loved the poetic nature of the writing, with vivid sensory descriptions that just washed over me.  I particularly liked the way the author worked music into the book, and the way certain smells became associated with characters and used as motifs.  In fact, I think this book is worth reading for the writing style alone!


Overall, A Veil of Glass and Rain, is an emotional, sad but also sweet and hopeful story that’s well worth reading.  I look forward to more from this author.

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