The Enchanted April by Elizabeth von Arnim
“Anyhow,” said Mrs. Wilkins, stopping her, “I'm sure it's wrong to go on being good for too long, till one gets miserable. And I can see you've been good for years and years, because you look so unhappy”—Mrs. Arbuthnot opened her mouth to protest—“and I—I've done nothing but duties, things for other people, ever since I was a girl, and I don't believe anybody loves me a bit—a bit—the b-better—and I long—oh, I long—for something else—something else—”
I love love love this book. Four women bereft of love, even married bereft of love, in a cold, wet London February go to a medieval castle in Italy in April. Love, along with the flowers, blooms abundantly. Elizabeth von Arnim's touch is light, affectionate and humorous. It's a romantic comedy of manners, similar to Jane Austen, but more kind. It's a hero's journey, stepping out of their comfort zone to find something better. An effective antidote from the ills of the world.
View all my reviews