A Surprising Book

Shelly Liebler

4 Stars

October 16, 2012

Book Title: The Girl in the Glass

Author: Susan Meissner - website

Genre: Contemporary/Historical Fiction

Rating: 4 of 5 stars

Meg has lived a lifetime of heartache since her parents divorced, since her grandmother died. Her father had become mostly a stranger to her life, and although he promised some day to take her to Florence, Italy, the place of her grandmother's birth, he has never come through on it. Or anything else. But suddenly, there is a plane ticket on her doorstep to Florence, leaving tonight. Will she take it? Her life seems to have not much else going on. She can do it. What will happen when she gets there? What will she learn about life, happiness and the Medici family.

I could not write a summary to do justice to this story. Meg, the main character, seems like someone you know, maybe even the lost "you" of your younger times. Nothing in her life seems to evoke passion. But yet, somehow this mysterious trip to Florence appears. As a reader, I had no idea where the story was going. What was Meg doing? Who were these people that she knew in Florence? What was she trying to accomplish? Would her father meet her there? And yet out of this story, comes a great adventure - although found in the museums and artwork of Florence. Two stories are told here - Meg's adventure, and then the life of Nora Orsini- a 16th century Medici.

The perspective of the book is quite unusual and unique. There are many things said in these pages without being spoken. I have never read any book by this author before and was taken away by the book - the characters, the setting, the undercurrents of the plot. I must admit the outcome of it was very satisfying, but I yearned for a closing scene to draw together all the beliefs and truths that this book dumped in my lap.

Recommend for: People who enjoy contemporary fiction woven with history.

Note: I was provided a complementary copy of this book in exchange for this review. All opinions expressed are my own.