The combination of the cover and the synopsis of Jessamine
made me think that I was about to read a scary ghost story. While is a ghost story, it's not scary. It's more two women trying to fit into a small island, St. Crescens. The women, Arabella (the ghost) and Grace are outsiders and move to St. Crescens for different reasons. But they both find it hard to fit into St. Crescens society.
Jessamine was filled with all my favorite elements. It had strong female characters, historical fiction, and an excellent location.
O'Neal did a wonderful job describing the fictitious island of St. Crescen and it's rich history. In fact, if St. Crescen were a real island I would have put it on one of the places that I have to visit. That is how well O'Neal created the world surrounding Jessamine
While Grace and Arabella were strong characters. Arabella was the stronger of the two. Her story was more detailed and readers got to know her better.
One of the problems that I had with the story that as a main character I thought that Grace was a little weak. Especially when compared to Arabella. Her character needed to be more "well rounded" and her storyline more detailed.
Another flaw for me was that the ending seemed to be a little rushed. Everything happened so fast and I wished that O'Neal would have drawn it out a little more. It might have made Grace a better main character.
Overall: I really enjoyed reading Jessamine and wouldn't hesitate to recommend Jessamine to other readers that have the same taste as mine. I am looking forward to read more by Eugenia O'neal.
*Disclaimer: Author provided a me with a review copy of Jessamine in exchange for an honest review.
This is a shorter version of a longer review that can be found on my blog.