by Anne Fortier
Available now in hardcover
As many of you know, I am a sucker for a) mysteries, b) Shakespeare-themed books, and c) historical fiction. Lucky for me, JULIET is all three.
Julie Jacobs is a drifter without much ambition. At 25, she has spent most of her life living in the shadow of her twin sister Janice. When Julie's great-aunt and guardian dies, leaving her entire estate to Janice, Julie escapes to Italy with a cryptic note, a key, and a mountain of debt. There she finds that her birth name, Giulietta Tolomei, is also the name of the woman who inspired Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet--and it's no coincidence.
There are a lot of things I love about this book. The "curse on both your houses" isn't completely over the top, and has just the right amount of creepiness. An extremely annoying character succeeds in redeeming herself (which is rare for me--I don't forgive easily). But what I like most is Julie. She is the kind of character that you expect to run into on the street: real, flawed, and with a history of grudges and mistakes that influence her choices. She, along with the wealth of research, make the story believable.
I highly recommend this book for fans of Dan Brown, Carol Goodman, and Jennifer Lee Carrell.