The Provence Cure for the Brokenhearted: Review

The Provence Cure for the Brokenheartedby Bridget Asher

Release date: 2011 / 405 pages

Synopsis (from Amazon): Brokenhearted and still mourning the loss of her husband, Heidi travels with Abbott, her obsessive-compulsive seven-year-old son, and Charlotte, her jaded sixteen-year-old niece, to the small village of Puyloubier in the south of France, where a crumbling stone house may be responsible for mending hearts since before World War II.

There, Charlotte confesses a shocking secret, and Heidi learns the truth about her mother’s “lost summer” when Heidi was a child. As three generations collide with one another, with the neighbor who seems to know all of their family skeletons, and with an enigmatic Frenchman, Heidi, Charlotte, and Abbot journey through love, loss, and healing amid the vineyards, warm winds and delicious food of Provence. Can the magic of the house heal Heidi’s heart, too?

First Sentence:  Ever since Henry’s death, I’d been losing things.

Review:  What a delight this novel was to read — “lovely” from start to finish — despite the sad premise. I began reading it on a flight and when the plane’s wheels touched the tarmac, I resurfaced having spent the time in the air in the South of France with a group of friends.

At its heart, Provence Cure is a love story — or really a series of love stories, interconnected and intertwined. However, as the first sentence announces, the protagonist’s love has died unexpectedly and she is left bereft with their son and a host of memories.  This does not sound like the recipe for a joy-filled love story, but Asher presents “love” in a rich, complex, multi-faceted perspective that somehow never becomes sappy or sentimental. 

While reading I tagged passages to quote, but out of context the quotes failed to express the depth of characterization that Asher is able to create, so I decided to leave them out of this review.  But I strongly recommend this novel to anyone who loves well-crafted, authentic character-driven fiction.  I predict that you will enjoy this as much as I did, and I look forward to checking out Asher’s previous two novels as well.

One caveat — this novel may not result in a sustained book club discussion — many character-driven novels and romances do not — but will certainly provide hours of enjoyment.

Interested in winning a free copy? Drop me a comment below and I will choose a lucky winner by the weekend!

Interested in other reviews?  Check out the following:

Monday, March 28th:  Colloquium

Tuesday, March 29th:  Lori’s Reading Corner

Wednesday, March 30th:  Luxury Reading

THursday, March 31st:  Kahakai Kitchen

Friday, April 1st:  Acting Balanced

Monday, April 4th:  Book Club Classics!

Wednesday, April 6th:  Rundpinne

Monday, April 11th:  Peeking Between the Pages

Wednesday, April 13th:  Girlichef

Thursday, April 14th:  Joyfully Retired

Monday, April 18th:  Debbie’s Book Bag

Wednesday, April 20th:  Books, Lists, Life

Monday, April 25th:  Caribousmom

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15 Responses to The Provence Cure for the Brokenhearted: Review

  1. Margie says:

    I’ve had my eye on this one. Thanks for the giveaway.

  2. Anita Yancey says:

    Sounds like a very touching and interesting book. Love to read it. Please enter me. Thanks!

  3. Bhibha says:

    Would love a copy of the book!


  4. diana mack says:

    have heard of this one…sounds good!

  5. Leah says:

    please enter me to win! thanks!

  6. Carol Wong says:

    I have read about this book before, sounds like such a good book. I really like that it is not “sappy”.


  7. Elaine says:

    I need a good love story! Count me in.

  8. Ruthie B says:

    I would love to read this…thanks!

  9. Cierina says:

    A story set in the south of France sounds like a wonderful adventure.

  10. Renee says:

    I;m very interested. I’ve heard that if you liked Under the Tuscan Sun, you’ll love this book!
    So, please pick me!
    THANK YOU!!!

  11. S. Krishna says:

    No need to enter me. I have this one to read, I’m glad to see you enjoyed it!

  12. Marilyn says:

    Your review is the first I’ve heard of this book. Sounds like something I might like. Please consider me for the giveaway.

  13. gwendolyn b. says:

    ooo! this has been on my wish list for months. I need something “delightful” to read right now, too! Thanks for the chance to win a copy.

  14. Phyllis Copt says:

    Having spent a month in Provence in Sault, I can already smell the lavender and hear the bees collecting pollen. I am trying to write a memoir, and this one sounds like an excellent one to study. I am in absolute awe of character-driven fiction that is well crafted and keeps the reader turning the pages. Thanks for the review and for considering me in this give away.

  15. Lisamm says:

    It sounds lovely despite the lack of ‘discussion worthy’ topics. But my book club would probably love it anyway just for the strong sense of place and the possibility for food pairings! We love to match food with books. Thanks so much for the review and for being on the tour!

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