Jenna is unhappy in her marriage to say the least. She wants to start a family but it seems her husband Greg is unwilling to become a father. Frustrated and unsure about the future of their relationship, she books a Greek holiday on a whim and boards the flight without a word to her husband. While he stays behind confused and remorseful, Jenna embarks on an exhilarating new adventure that initially involves delightful sightseeing and her favorite pastime of people watching. The fellow tourists in her group become an ideal object for hilarious observation. Her holiday is worry-free and lighthearted until a tiny, yet precious urn lands on her hands to complicate life for her especially after the inevitable Greek Adonis makes his grand entrance. The author only hints on the fact that this is not your average holiday love story by referring to her novel as a mystery romance however, what lurks between the front and back cover is much more sinister than that. What we have here is a proper crime story with a ruthless criminal on the loose, a ring of antiquity smugglers, a police detective sniffing on their tracks and even a baffling murder to have readers gasp in shock, rendering them unwilling to put the book down. There is even a tiny paranormal twist, just to pepper the whole thing with the right amount of pixie dust. Not that the story is in particular need of magic – it would be preposterous to even suggest that with an enchanted Greek island being the backdrop of this whimsical story, transporting the reader right in the middle of it all with tantalizing descriptions of exotic Greek dishes, the murmur of the sparkling sea and the caressing sunlight on the characters’ blissful faces.
I found the plot quite an intricate puzzle that involves a parade of minor characters who come and go without always contributing much to the story but are rather there to provide a fully clear insight into everyday life on a Greek island. Being a Greek myself I can vouch for the clarity of the conveyed feelings and for the genuine way in which everything has been described throughout based on my own experiences. Furthermore, the author’s occasional reference to the Greek quirkiness related to the evil eye as well as our obsession with offering food and drink generously to guests, made me chuckle repeatedly with a mixture of amusement and pride.
Having relayed all the wonderful points that I found in the story, there is only one side to it that I wish I could change. I wonder if the author became so engrossed in her own intriguing story that perhaps it evaded her to be more clear on certain parts unless of course this was intended for her own reasons. Maybe it is just a personal preference of mine but I do like to end a book with all my questions fully answered. However in this case, there are a couple of gray areas that are left up to the reader to decide and ponder on. I am sure there are many people out there who would love that. As I said, I am guessing it is a matter of preference and as the book left me with a tiny feeling of dissatisfaction for this reason, I am giving it a score of 4 stars instead of 5. Having said that, for the intelligence and complexity of the plot, for the believability of characters and situations, for the overall chuckles involved and for the surprise elements that continuously kept me on my feet, the book deserves to pass in all other respects with flying colors.
A Kindle edition of “Jenna’s Journey” is available on Amazon.