I received an advanced copy to read and review on NetGalley.
This did not affect my thoughts in any way.
Synopsis: Paris, 1942. Suzanne Belperron is known as one of the most innovative jewelers of her time. Elsa Schiaparelli and the Duchess of Windsor are just two of her many illustrious clients. What no one knows is that Suzanne and her dear friend, American socialite Dixie Osgood, have been helping transport hundreds of Jewish families out of France since the war began. But now, the war has come to Suzanne’s front door—the Nazis have arrested her business partner and longtime lover, Bernard Herz.
New York, 1986. Violine Duplessi, an appraiser for a boutique auction house, is summoned to visit the home of Paul Osgood, a scholarly lawyer and political candidate who aspires to take over the Senate seat of his recently deceased father. Paul has inherited everything inside Osgood Manor, from the eighteenth-century furniture to the nineteenth-century Limoges china. But a vintage Louis Vuitton trunk is what calls to Violine, with the surprising but undeniable thrum of energy that can only be one thing: the gift passed down to her by La Lune, the sixteenth-century courtesan.
Since childhood, Violine has been able to read an object’s history and learn the secrets of its owners by merely touching it, but she silenced her psychometry when it destroyed her last relationship. Why has it returned now?
This novel is set to be released in February of 2023
As this is the first novel I have ever read by this author, I went into it without any expectations. First, let us discuss the cover. The COVER, y’all. I’ve seen other covers for her books and they are all gorgeous, but this one definitely gives off a sense of fantasy and maybe even a little science fiction as well. Second, I am not used to stories with multiple leads, as this one does. For most of my reading life I have always preferred single character points of views, but I am willing to give this a try. Let’s begin!
The Jeweler of Stolen Dreams is set both in 1942 Paris, right in the heart of World War II and New York, 1986. It follows the lives of two leading ladies: a Mrs. Suzanne Belperron (1942) and Violine Duplessi (1986), as they navigate their respective yet entwined situations. MJ Rose works in elements of the supernatural with history, and if you’re a fan of Dr. Who (with the somewhat mystical elements), then this just may be the story for you.
Ms. Rose’s writing is impeccable, and I tried to find some fault with it and could not. It absolutely was her writing style which drew me in (and now I want to try other tales by her based solely off that). While The Jeweler of Stolen Dreams is set in two different time periods with very well-researched settings, I am uncertain if this is the tale for me. I adore historical fiction, which drew me initially to this book, but I am not sure if I can get on board with its other elements.
Another thing I had trouble with was the backstory. There is a lot of backstory and an equal amount of description in this novel. As much as I loved gemology myself as a child, and as much as I can appreciate the history and amount of research this novel clearly possesses, I found myself longing for more movement and events within the first few chapters of the book. Unfortunately, by the end of the third chapter, I lost interest. Overall, I am a prose-lover, and The Jeweler of Stolen Dreams has it in spades. The story’s pace could’ve been a little faster, especially as MC1 gets in her head a lot.
Final thoughts. While I know this story wasn’t for me, it will be for those who love a good war time tale. It has elements of fantasy which work okay, and could’ve moved along a little faster. However, I do understand that certain scenes are needed to set the overall feel and purpose of the story. Finally, the story’s characters are also very well thought out. For these reasons, I give The Jeweler of Stolen Dreams a four out of five stars.