Release Date: July 21, 2014
Genre: Adult Contemporary
Source: I received a complimentary copy from the author in exchange for an honest review
Rating: 4.5 Bookworms
An apartment fire costs everything, including the illusion of a tolerable marriage.
Gillian is depressed, her moods shifting like earthquakes raising deep, roiling anger. Convinced her friends and family won't understand, she turns to strangers through a blog she writes as Mrs. Jones, a nondescript anyone.
Despite exposing herself on the internet, she assumes no one will notice her among millions of voices. Cathartic writing helps her to transform as she makes new friends, seeks help from a non-traditional therapist, and considers divorce.
Then Mr. Write answers. A strange man who asks questions, who peels away the layers. Gillian finds love, but life is absurdly stubborn. She must confront her husband, Evan, before she can move on.
The Anonymous Blog of Mrs. Jones is a well-crafted, provocative, and moving novel. Told, in part, through blog posts and comments, it is a unique look at soul searching and finding a second chance at love.
Gillian is trapped. Trapped in a mediocre job. Trapped in a marriage. Trapped in the chair her depression won't let her leave. Following a fire where she and her husband lose everything, Gillian and Evan seem to have lost each other as well. After almost a year, Gillian feels it's time to make some changes. She begins seeing a therapist, accepts the offer of friendship from a coworker, asks Evan for a divorce, moves in with a roommate, and she starts an anonymous blog.
It is through all these changes that Gillian begins on the path of finding herself. Oh, she changes and had changed following the fire. But she finds the Gillian at her core - her inner self - and that's what leads her towards love.
The blog allows Gillian to express herself and explore herself in a way where there is no judgement. She finds a lot of freedom in this. Particularly when Mr. Write, whom Gillian began writing to as Mrs. Jones, answers her. Mrs. Jones and Mr. Write really converse with one another and, in turn, realize what they're missing...what they want in life.
I think there is probably a point in every marriage where one or both spouses wonder whether or not the marriage is built to last. So I could relate to Gillian's feelings. I enjoyed living through Gillian's soul searching experiences. She found friends and new hobbies. She learned things about herself - about her needs in a relationship and how to just be. I think her most important lesson was how to communicate. Through everything - but especially the connection with Mr. Write, Gillian was able to shed her old self and embrace the new Gillian. And she was able to fall in love.
I love stories of second chances. The Anonymous Blog of Mrs. Jones is endearing and fulfilling. Ms. Harger drew me into Gillian's life and struggles. And in the end, I was happy to have been on the journey with her.
I’m a word gypsy and emotion sifter, writing about broken condoms, unhappy marriages and women’s issues at the chick-lit end of women’s fiction and women’s fiction end of chick-lit.
I believe great storytelling asks readers to confront what they've stuffed deep down. We all get blinded by emotion and stuck in ruts. In June 2005, I woke up to a wall of fire. Watching the flames eat away my life was my biggest turning point in life.
My first novel Strong Enough released February 2013. My sophomore work, The Anonymous Blog of Mrs. Jones, debuts this July.
Find us at: ellenharger.com. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.