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A Light on the Veranda [Kindle Edition]

Ciji Ware
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (54 customer reviews)

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Book Description


"An intriguing, enticing, complex, and romantic novel that will keep readers up long into the night." —Rundpinne

A secret may hold for a hundred years... and then it's time for the past to take revenge

Daphne Duvallon vowed never to return to the South years ago when she left her philandering fiance at the altar. Now family has called her back to Natchez, Mississippi, a city as mysterious and compelling as the ghostly voices that haunt her dreams.

From a time when the oldest settlement on the Mississippi was in its heyday and vast fortunes were made and lost, Daphne begins to uncover the secrets of an ancestor whose fate is somehow linked with her own. In a compelling and mesmerizing tale, now Daphne must right the wrongs of the past, or follow the same path into tragedy...


"A richly rewarding read brimming with local color, humor, sexual tension, environmental issues, and even a fun glimpse into the world of jazz bands."

"Ware's weaving of a contemporary story along with history of a hundred years past, and the accuracy and detail she brings into the story are fascinating."

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Past demons threaten to resurface for Daphne Duvallon when her brother asks her to return to Natchez, Miss., to play the harp at his wedding. If Daphne agrees, she'll be fired from her position with the Oberlain Chamber Orchestra. Worse, she'll have to face her spiteful parents and confront the odious ex-fianc‚ she left at the altar just two years before. Events quickly spiral from bad to bizarre when Daphne moves into her elderly cousin Maddy's crumbling mansion and suffers disturbing visions about her female ancestors, gifted harpists also named Daphne, whose bad choices in men resulted in insanity. When Daphne is in the present, which is most of the time, she is charmed by nature photographer Simon Hopkins. Simon cheers Daphne on as she launches a new career as a jazz harpist and, in return, she helps him organize a fund-raiser to fight Able Petroleum's attempts to build a toxic dump next to a bird sanctuary. Ware (Midnight on Julia Street, etc.) pads this tale with clumps of guidebook-style narrative and shallow, truly unpleasant characters. Although readers who enjoy time-travel romances may leach some pleasure from the pre-Civil War Southern plantation setting of Daphne's visions, others will be hard pressed to finish this lengthy book.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

In this wonderful sequel to Midnight on Julia Street (1999), Daphne Duvallon leaves her native New Orleans for New York City after abandoning her philandering fiance at the altar in front of 500 guests. Now her brother, King, wants her to come back south for his wedding in Natchez. A talented Julliard-trained harpist, Daphne will do anything for her brother, even if it means losing her job with an up-and-coming orchestra, and the trip truly becomes a life-altering experience when she meets Sim Hopkins, a nature photographer who has the potential to be the right man in her life if she can learn to trust again. Both are cautious, and for good reason, as the distant past impacts their future, cued by the music of a mysterious harp. This ghostly instrument opens a gateway to a sequence of tragic events beginning in the late 1790s and ending, finally, with the death of a previous Daphne Duvallon. A thoroughly engaging romance in its own right. Patty Engelmann
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Product Details

  • File Size: 1331 KB
  • Print Length: 480 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1402222734
  • Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark; Reprint edition (March 1, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007GCCAP8
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #100,311 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Light on the Veranda March 17, 2012
Light on the Veranda is another great novel by CiJi Ware. I just love Ms. Ware's novels. They are always full of romance without being overly mushy. This novel is a richly descriptive story of past and present of local families who have lots of skeletons in their magnolia scented closets and the past has a way of catching up with the future.

A wonderfully researched story of very real people with fragile emotions and a city rich with history, of a past when women were controlled by the men in their lives and the morals of the times. When reading this book I could almost feel the humid atmosphere and feel the grandeur of the southern mansions. Ciji Ware does an awesome job of weaving the two stories together seamlessly where dreams are reality. The story is not all honeysuckle and mint juleps as there are unsavory characters and sad circumstances in both the past and the present, but the charm of the old south is definitely a lure that draws the reader in.

Light on the Veranda is the sequel to Midnight on Julia Street with a lot of the same characters. I would recommend that you read these books in order as to get a better understanding and feel for the people and locations. Again I highly recommend all of Ciji Ware's books. you will not be disappointed.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An interesting read August 13, 2001
By Sarah
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I think I would have given this book a 4 star if so much did not happen to our heroine so quickly. I thought the writing was very well done. The characters both in the present and past had depth and interest to them that kept me reading. Both Daphne and Sim had their own emotional baggage that they had to work through, and did an admirable job in doing so. This is a story of a growing relationship, not your typical, h/h meet and fall instantly in love story (though there are elements of that too). Sometimes I thought they fell back on their preconceived ideas and previous habits too readily, but I suppose that is human nature and added some realism to the story. Both were at fault during these scenes and eventually talked through their problems.
Although this story stands pretty well on its own, it does help if you have read its predecessor Midnight on Julia Street (Daphne's brother's story). One of my smaller criticisms of the story is how dysfunctional this family is (as well as its ancestors). Between the self-centered mother, apathetic father, "interesting" aunt, and psychotic jilted ex, I thought things went a little too far. The only thing that brought it back to the credible and enjoyable for me was the tie-ins to the past. There were just enough of these to keep the story interesting, but not enough to bog the plot down. It is interesting how Ms. Ware does not have the present characters know the intricacies of their predecessors lives (which is what usually happens in these stories). We realize that everyone knows and is related to everyone else, but the true meaning of the previous generation's stories was lost. Some rumors came down through the families, but watching Daphne learn the true stories was interesting and well done.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another Historical Winner from Ciji Ware March 14, 2012
Full of breathtaking romance, loaded with historical and contemporary detail, sometimes light-hearted and at other times heart-wrenching, Ciji Ware's A LIGHT ON THE VERANDA is a winner.

New Orleans-born professional harpist Daphne's life took a turn for the better when she walked out on her wedding to the rat of the century. But now she's in Natchez to play her harp at her beloved brother's wedding. There she meets Simon, a man vastly different from the rodents she usually encounters. The attraction is immediate, mutual, and startling. For Daphne's music conjures visions from the past involving another Simon and her ancestor, another harp-playing Daphne. The historical Daphne's sad, tragic life can't be changed. Does the modern Daphne have the courage to change hers? Especially since the rat, vicious as ever, is back and has her in his sights.

Ms. Ware interweaves the similar and yet different stories of two women across two centuries who share problems still all too common. Male betrayal, greed and cruelty can wreak havoc in a woman's life, then and now. The historical Daphne, born into a frightful situation, had no control over her lot. The modern Daphne does, but only when she sheds her female indoctrination in submissiveness and fights back.

But even within the past and present world of male privilege, decent men exist. The historic Simon was one, and so is the contemporary Simon. Those of you who read my reviews know I like honorable heroes, and the modern Simon is one of the best. Utterly masculine, strong and yet vulnerable, protective but not patronizing, Simon is a spectacular hero. He's also gorgeous, which doesn't hurt. *g* Lucky Daphne.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I was trying to save Ciji Ware's new book, " A Light on the Veranda," as a fun read for my next vacation. However, I picked it up just to get a peek at what Daphne would be up to, since "Midnight on Julia Street" was one of my favorites last year. I subsequently found myself engrossed, reading "A Light on the Veranda" from cover to cover in one week. I was fascinated by the way the author wove the past and present in two story lines whose similarities were so intriguing that I couldn't wait to see how it all would get resolved. It was particularly interesting because I haven't spent much time in the South. Now I feel I know much more about plantations, local culture, etc. So much of this has to be real! I highly recommend it.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
A great one
Published 3 months ago by sharon kenworthy
3.0 out of 5 stars An Unwelcome Surprise!
I wish I had fully read the description before getting this book. I have read two other Cij Ware books and loved both, so had no thought of finding a sub theme that was over the... Read more
Published 5 months ago by S. Estes
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Predictable but entertaining.
Published 6 months ago by Discovery
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great read.
Published 8 months ago by Lindsey McClendon
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Love the story line and the writing style and will read more of her work
Published 8 months ago by Martha Sewell
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful read with a great mix of present and past
A wonderful read with a great mix of present and past, and making me want to travel to Natchez, Mississippi.
Published 8 months ago by Raymond J. Obuchowski
5.0 out of 5 stars Enjoy Ms. Ware's books
Enjoy Ms. Ware's books. Now on my third. The research she does to prepare for novels almost feel like a history lesson. Happy that I discovered Ciji Ware.
Published 9 months ago by Susan C
4.0 out of 5 stars Good historical fiction
This is my first Ciji Ware novel and it was an entertaining introduction to her writing. The setting of the Deep South really wowed me. Read more
Published 12 months ago by Tamara
1.0 out of 5 stars Not such a great read
Would have been better without the swearing and cheaply written passages, she cheapened her writing by including passages like that.
Published 13 months ago by nancy moss
5.0 out of 5 stars Gotta read it !!!!!!!
Beautiful love story. I could not put it down.
I think everyone who reads this book will love it. I'm sure Simon and Daphne will make beautiful music togather😋
Published 13 months ago by Brenda Hopkins
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More About the Author

CIJI WARE is a New York Times & USA Today bestselling novelist, an Emmy-award winning television producer, reporter, writer, lecturer, and host. Her latest work is the novella "The Ring of Kerry Hannigan," part of the RING OF TRUTH anthology with novelists Diana Dempsey and Kate Moore, published in July 2014.

Ware has won numerous awards for her 9 works of fiction, including the Dorothy Parker Award of Excellence; the 'Golden Quill' award for Historical Fiction;'Best Fictionalized Biography' for ISLAND OF THE SWANS and 'Best Historical Novel nomination for WICKED COMPANY from Romantic Times magazine. Her novel, A RACE TO SPLENDOR debuted in April, 2011 on the 105th anniversary of the devastating 1905 San Francisco Earthquake and Firestorm and was short-listed for the WILLA (Cather) Literary Award in 2012. Her first all-contemporary work of fiction, THAT SUMMER IN CORNWALL, was published in January, 2013, and is a stand-alone sequel to her bestselling "time-slip" novel, A COTTAGE BY THE SEA. The second in Ware's Four Seasons Quartet, THAT AUTUMN IN EDINBURGH--also a contemporary, stand-alone sequel to ISLAND OF THE SWANS--was published in November, 2013. For the latter novel, she was bestowed the honor of FSA Scot, of which she is exceedingly proud.

Ware's most recent nonfiction, RIGHTSIZING YOUR LIFE: Simplifying Your Surroundings While Keeping What Matters Most was named by the Wall Street Journal as "One of the Top 5 Books on Retirement Issues." For seventeen years Ware was heard daily as a commentator on ABC Radio & TV in Los Angeles. During her noted career as a broadcaster, she has worked for PBS and all three major network affiliates, covering a wide range of topics in the areas of health, consumer and lifestyle subjects. Ciji Ware is also a sought-after event speaker, print journalist, (AARP, Travel & Leisure and other national magazines) and has the distinction of being elected as the first woman graduate of Harvard College to serve as President of the Harvard Alumni Association, Worldwide. The author lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Visit Ciji's website at; her Facebook page: Ciji Ware, Novelist and her Pinterest page at

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