Review: The Fragrance of Geraniums by Alicia G. Ruggieri

One of the things that I truly enjoy about novels is reaching into their depths to find out what messages about life, love, or faith the story has to impart to the reader. As an english major in college, I looked for these messages quite a bit. In classes, we would joke that perhaps the author meant for us to take a story at face value and never meant anything deeper than that. But as people, we tend to look for those hidden meanings, don’t we? We also think people have ulterior motives or mean something different than what they say.

The message that this novel has to share is one that I truly enjoyed, and one that I think nearly everyone has wondered from time to time. “If God is so good and loves us, why does he let us suffer?” 

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

Told from multiple perspectives, this is a powerful story of three women – of the threads of mercy that connect them – and of heart-wrenching sorrows alchemized by the Heavenly Father’s overwhelming redeeming grace. Rhode Island – 1934 A GIRL Grace Picoletti has nothing going for her – but she’s determined to succeed in life, nonetheless. Born to severe destitution, she claws her way up from the pit of family shame and secrets. She avoids close friendships – even with the likable, persistent Paulie Giorgi… A WOMAN Despite her own agonizing emotional pain, childless Emmeline Kinner reaches out to a young woman so far beneath her. She could never have known whom else God would set in her path through her friendship with Grace… A MOTHER Long ago, Sarah Picoletti resigned herself to a loveless, abusive life – and she believes that her daughter Grace must inherit the same fate. Yet Sarah’s own soul cries out for the blessed peace and hope of which the radio minister speaks…

This novel was a somber story. Set during the depression, the poverty that surrounds the characters adds an echo to the desolation found within the three women of the story. Each one has a story that unfolds within the pages. Each one is a story that can be represented by a flower waiting to bloom in the spring- dead in the winter and just waiting to come alive. As their stories intertwine more and more, they learn to find hope in the broken dreams around them.

Overall, I really enjoyed this novel. Alicia G. Ruggieri created a beautiful story within the pages of this book. Filled with a variety of characters that come alive on the page and moments that will break your heart for them. There are a number of challenges that the three women in this story are faced with that all lead them to some realization about faith. This novel presents the Gospel message in a beautiful way and in a way that nearly anyone can relate to.

I would love to hear from you! Feel free to add to the discussion by posting in the comments below.

For more on the author or this book, please check out the following links:

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