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Morning Glory by Sarah Jio

Morning Glory (2013)

by Sarah Jio

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Set in Seattle's Lake Union houseboat community, Morning Glory focuses on the dual lives of Penny, a housewife in the 1950s, and Ada, a widowed former magazine editor in modern times. After a tragic accident took the lives of Ada's husband and young daughter, she leaves New York and rents the houseboat from which Penny mysteriously disappeared. After Ada leaves her journalism career, she becomes wrapped up in solving the mystery of Penny whose trunk she finds in the houseboat. With the help of an attractive war photojournalist turned food photographer, Ada discovers the secrets of Boat Street.

Morning Glory alternates with a split narrative from the perspective of Ada and Penny, which immediately drew me into the story. It's a nice combination of a missing person/murder mystery combined with romance. This was a fun read and I enjoyed it much more than I expected. If you are a Sarah Jio fan, this book is quite similar in style to her others, and you will probably enjoy it. ( )
  Olivermagnus | Aug 9, 2017 |
Penny is a newlywed in the 1950s, married to the famous artist Dexter Wentworth living in a houseboat in Washington State; Ada is a young widow grieving her husband and daughter about 50 years later who moves from New York City to that same houseboat to help move on with her life away from the pitiful, caring looks of those she knew. As she begins to find that life can still hold some happiness for her, Ada finds an old chest of Penny’s, and learns that there are secrets kept by the longtime residents of Boat Street.

Both Penny and Ada were characters I cared about and hoped the best for. The writing is strong and the two tales are woven together well and with good pacing. The book kept me up past my bedtime. While these are all strong signs, I didn’t love it so much that it was a five star read. ( )
  Karin7 | Jan 30, 2016 |
I want to live on a houseboat! Like her predecessor book [Violets of March], Morning Glory is a romance and a mystery, woven between today's world and an earlier, more innocent, time, and based in the Seattle area. Very readable. ( )
  wareagle78 | Apr 30, 2015 |
quite an enjoyable story...also suspenseful. I found myself getting tense wondering what happened to one of the characters. Even read ahead. The ending had me totally surprised. I'd recommend this to others and will read another of her books. ( )
  hammockqueen | Feb 17, 2015 |
Morning Glory was my first book by Sarah Jio and looking forward to reading more of her books, as have added a number of them to my “must read list”!

Ah, where to start…..this book was so engaging! I was traveling from NC to South Florida (by car), with a 14 hour drive ahead of me with a few good audio books to keep me company. After finishing one on the first leg of the trip, I started Morning Glory on the return trip and finished it before my return. At first it seemed a little slow, and was not sure it would grab me; however, I urge readers to stay with it as within the next few chapters, I was hooked completely!

The setting was sooooo alluring, as I have spent a great deal of time in Seattle and Puget Sound and love the area, as so serene. The water is so perfect and have great memories there with two different special guys--definitely brought back a few as also dined at the space needle.
How fantastic ---the author was writing this book on a house boat which made it very special. Having spent time on a house boat in Mt Dora, FL (the New England of the South), can relate!

The main character, Ada was grieving and guilt ridden and leaves her successful career as a writer in the media travel business in NY, escaping to a houseboat for rent in Washington.

Little did she know the caring people she would meet and the surprises in store for her as she researches the past of this particular house boat she is renting and the Peyton Place (Boat Street).

She finds some items in a chest left behind and begins researching the woman who lived there in the 50s, which had gone missing years ago. Wow, was this a story in itself!

The book switches back and forth from Ada’s present day and her time on this house boat to Penny Wentworth's life on Boat Street years ago. The more Ada researches, the more she is intrigued by this woman’s life and the mystery surrounding her death.

Penny was a beautiful young woman who married a famous artist – older, good looking, Casanova, wealthy, and was never home. She was lonely and unfulfilled. She loves baking, romance, and sailing. However, never experiences this with her husband.

While her husband is away for long periods of time (supposedly at his studio in Pioneer Square or off traveling with women celebrities), Penny meets a boat builder named Colin and falls in love. Colin has a past and secrets as well.

However, she stays with her artist husband as a sense of security. She is pulled toward both men; and the night she plans her getaway – something happens. There is another mystery here with other players (will not spoil this).

Suspenseful, romantic, mysterious, and a true women’s historical fiction – the author does a magnificent job tying together all the players, their past, and stories for an inspiring, uplifting, and heartwarming story with lots of twists and turns and ones which will make you smile long after the book has ended! Just when you think it is ending, you will get another surprise before it ends in the epilogue. Outstanding!
( )
  JudithDCollins | Nov 27, 2014 |
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In memory of Anna and every other lost and brokenhearted woman. Rainy days aren't forever. May you find your way.
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I stepped down onto the old dock and it creaks beneath my feet, as if letting out a deep sigh.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0142196991, Paperback)

New York Times bestselling author Sarah Jio imagines life on Boat Street, a floating community on Seattle’s Lake Union—home to people of artistic spirit who for decades protect the dark secret of one startling night in 1959
Fleeing an East Coast life marred by tragedy, Ada Santorini takes up residence on houseboat number seven on Boat Street. She discovers a trunk left behind by Penny Wentworth, a young newlywed who lived on the boat half a century earlier. Ada longs to know her predecessor’s fate, but little suspects that Penny’s mysterious past and her own clouded future are destined to converge.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:19:51 -0400)

Fleeing an East Coast life marred by tragedy, Ada Santorini takes up residence on houseboat number seven on Boat Street. She discovers a trunk left behind by Penny Wentworth, a young newlywed who lived on the boat half a century earlier. Ada longs to know her predecessor's fate, but little suspects that Penny's mysterious past and her own clouded future are destined to converge.… (more)

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