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Chocolate Roses Paperback – April 1, 2010

13 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 233 pages
  • Publisher: Brigham Distributing (April 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1935217623
  • ISBN-13: 978-1935217626
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.5 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,415,419 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Joan Sowards is a third generation Arizonan of pioneer stalk. She holds a BS degree from Arizona State University. Joan is married and has raised five children and a multitude of chickens. Her favorite hobbies are writing, composing, and doing family history research. She loves to travel the USA, and her visited countries list includes Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Hong Kong, Thailand, Mexico and Canada. Only 185 to go!

As of 2012, Joan's published novels include Haunts Haven, Chocolate Roses, and The Star Prophecy (Walnut Springs Press). She also authored LDS Word Puzzles (Spring Creek Books), and Word Search Arizona, and a short story The Last Gift of Christmas (A Merry Little Christmas, Covenant Communications). Upcoming novels include a historical fiction titled Shadows of Montségur, a time travel -- Bridges of the Heart, and contemporary fiction novels--Senior Wish, and Clairvoyance.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Lu Ann Staheli on January 14, 2011
Format: Paperback
Someone in marketing obviously didn't know the definition of Parody when they added the subtitle "A Jane Eyre Parody" to this absolutely delightful novel. A parody is also called send-up, spoof or lampoon, in contemporary usage, is a work created to mock, comment on, or make fun at an original work, its subject, author, style, or some other target, by means of humorous, satiric or ironic imitation. In no way did this book do any of those things. It did, however, provide a well-told story that parallels the plot of Jane Eyre, one of my favorite novels. I loved the characters, I laughed in all the right places, and left the book with a dozen of so of my friends in mind who I wanted to immediately recommend the book to for a fun read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Anna del C. Dye on December 15, 2010
Format: Paperback
This book could be a chapter out of real life for many twenty-seven year-old single LDS girls. The main character, Janie, is a witty, well-rounded woman who grows up with her sister. They live with her aunt who helps everyone else. The aunt is great, but the two girls, who have lost their parents and brother in a car accident, learn to be independent quickly.
Kylee is married and has children while Janie would love to be en her shoes, but her hips are just a touch larger and boys don't go for her.
The two sisters own Chocolate Art Forever, a small establishment in downtown Arizona. Jamie's story starts when a dashing man comes in every Tuesday at 9:00 a.m. to order a chocolate rose to send to a woman. For months he has been doing this, and every time she sees him, Janie becomes a little more enamored of the man. No wanting to intrude or look foolish, she never approaches him and just dreams of a time he may notice her.
Suddenly, life takes a drastic turn when the dashing Roger W. moves next door to her and she finds out that he has a four-year-old daughter. The vivacious curly haired girl, Emily, falls in-love with Janie's giant Great Dane and begs often to visit her. But the visits are not all that Janie gets when thugs point a gun at Roger, her and the mysterious woman to whom he sends the chocolate roses.
Roger's past is catching up to him and without knowing it, Janie is drawn into the middle of it, a place where she only finds heartaches and tears. When Roger has a unfortunate accident she begs for his life, and promises in return that she will never seek him again, a promise she will keep forever.
This book is a sweet romance full of melted hearts and yummy chocolate kisses. It is a dream come true for any romantic chocolate lover.
Anna del C. Dye
Author of "The Silent Warrior Trilogy"
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Joyce DiPastena on July 2, 2010
Format: Paperback
I'd give this book 4.75 stars if Amazon would let me!

Chocolate Roses, by Joan Sowards, bills itself as "A Jane Eyre Parody" for LDS readers. Now, I have read Jane Eyre, and have even watched an adaptation on PBS, but both have been a very long time ago. So I'll be honest...I had to look up a summary on [...] to remind myself how the story went. Chocolate Roses can be enjoyed in its own right, but having at least a glancing familiarity with Jane Eyre will heighten your enjoyment even more.

The protagonist of Chocolate Roses, Janie Rose Whitaker, is a wonderfully well-rounded character, as is her best friend and roommate, Flo the Great Dane. (Yes, I'm talking dog here!) This book is full of humor, sure to tickle many a reader's funny bone, as well as romance and yes (being true to Jane Eyre) unavoidable tragedy. All are handled with a delightfully deft hand that makes this book very hard to put down.

Chocolate Roses is clearly aimed at an LDS reading audience, being chockfull of LDS cultural and doctrinal references. But any church-going reader of any faith will likely find much to relate to here, too.

Summary: One of the best LDS novels I've read in a very long time!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Traxy on June 1, 2011
Format: Paperback
I had to look up "LDS" - it means "Latter Day Saints", i.e. this is Mormon fiction. Could just as well have been Martian fiction for all I care, that's about how alien it felt at times. Not specifically because it's about Mormons, though. I would've felt uncomfortable if it was just a plain Protestant thing, because it's still a very religious (and American) society that's being portrayed, and I'm from a very secular European country. Big culture differences.

This is not a parody of "Jane Eyre", because you don't get a parody by loosely basing a story on some events from a book - you get a derivative. A parody, at least in my view, is meant to be funny and to poke fun at the original to a certain extent. This doesn't. It's amusing in parts, but the laugh the back of the book promised was a stifled chortle at best.

As a book, it was quite enjoyable, even though story didn't have an awful lot to do with "Jane Eyre". Chubby chocolate shop singleton with a huge dog crushes on a customer who pays her no attention at all, until he moves in next door. He has a cute little daughter and a mad wife who likes to paint. And there's a murder mystery looming in the air. So there are plenty of things to make it readable, and it's a nice little story, but none of the characters have anything to do with Brontë.

"Chocolate Roses" is a bit like a Harlequin novel, except with less romantic fwuff to coo over. It's sweet and mostly harmless as a story, some bits are quite amusing and I like Joan Sowards's style of writing. I rooted for Janie and the dog and hoped she'd get her Roger eventually, but really, she was no Miss Eyre and he was definitely no Edward Rochester, no matter how pained he tried to look.
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