October 28, 2014

This is my third attempt at writing a review of Aprilly, by Jane Abbott. I’m not sure why writing about it is so daunting. It’s never going to be my favorite Jane Abbott book — there are structural issues, and a lot of what happens feels unearned. Also I found it hard to sympathize with the protagonist, and wished some of the other characters got more page time. But all of these things are things I’ve had time to think out. When I finished the book, I mostly just thought, “that was nice, but the romance was kind of creepy and unnecessary and Laughing Last was better.”

Anyway, I enjoyed it, but I doubt I’ll want to read it again. And if you want more information than that (you should) here’s a bit of a synopsis:

April Dangerfield is left penniless and homeless (I mean, approximately) after the death of her circus performer mother, and somehow ends up in a small town in Maine, where she finds a number of friends, including the usual crotchety spinster, and eventually acquires a family. And also a horse.

Jane Abbott falls flat for me sometimes, usually in the books everyone else seems to like best. I guess this is just one of those times.


  1. Read it, and yeah… probably not on the re-read list. Definitely reading Laughing Last soon!

  2. Oh dear. Aprilly is always in my re-read rotation, except I do get a little creeped out by the romance at the end because I think that the minister is way too old for her. I don’t love it as much as Happy House, or Keineth, Larkspur, and High Acres, but I like it more than Red Robin and Harriett’s Choice.

    • Hmm. Happy House isn’t really a favorite for me, either, but I love Keineth best, and I really liked Red Robin. And Laughing Last. I need to reread Larkspur and High Acres.

  3. That’s one of the few I don’t have. I do remember that not liking the heroine was my biggest issue against Barberry Gate (though I’m admittedly prejudiced against heroines with unusual names). One of my all-time favorite of hers is Juliet is Twenty.

    • I feel like multiple people have recommended Juliet is Twenty, so I have high hopes for it.

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