Haunting Violet by Alyxandra Harvey

Summary/Cover Image from Publisher's Website:
A ghostly murder mystery set in Victorian England brings an exciting change for Alyx Harvey fans

Violet Willoughby doesn't believe in ghosts. But they believe in her. After spending years participating in her mother's elaborate ruse as a fraudulent medium, Violet is about as skeptical as they come in all matters supernatural. Now that she is being visited by a very persistent ghost, one who suffered a violent death, Violet can no longer ignore her unique ability. She must figure out what this ghost is trying to communicate, and quickly because the killer is still on the loose.

Afraid of ruining her chance to escape her mother's scheming through an advantageous marriage, Violet must keep her ability secret. The only person who can help her is Colin, a friend she's known since childhood, and whom she has grown to love. He understands the true Violet, but helping her on this path means they might never be together. Can Violet find a way to help this ghost without ruining her own chance at a future free of lies?

Ever since I saw the beautiful cover and the intriguing synopsis for Alyxandra Harvey’s Haunting Violet, I have been dying to read it, as if there is one thing I love its well-written historical fiction, especially if it involves something supernatural as well. Thankfully, this book perfectly fit the bill!

For Violet Willoughby, she is starting to become sick of the life she has been given. She cannot stand watching her mother constantly trick people into giving their money over for her so-called séances, which are the definition of fake, as well as dragging poor Violet and Colin, her mother’s young assistant, along for the ride. Better yet, she is also tired of her mother constantly telling her to marry a rich man when all Violet really wants to do is find someone she truly loves, someone who will let Violet be Violet. However, everything changes when Violet and her family are called to Lord Jasper’s house to help conduct séances for his guests’s entertainment. Soon enough Violet is involved in a murder mystery involving a snobby, elitist society girl and her dead twin sister who Violet is actually able to see. Will Violet be able to save the day before someone else is killed? Or will Violet soon become shark’s bait herself? And will Violet ever be able to get out of her mother’s plans for the future? Only time and more pages can tell in this mystery that will have nearly any reader thinking, “Who did it?”

From start to finish, I adored and rooted for several characters in Haunting Violet including Violet, of course. Strong yet sweet, Violet is a girl who has her head on her shoulders but yet isn’t afraid of letting her heart lead her way sometimes. It was always fun to see Violet interact with the different society people, and for Violet to allow for her talents in spiritualism grow also, as this portion especially allowed for Violet’s coming of age. I also adored the addition of Colin, Violet’s adorable Irish love interest, as well as Elizabeth, Violet’s hilarious and headstrong best friend.

The plot of Haunting Violet was also intricate. Not only because of the complex murder mystery subplot, but also because of the sprit powers Violet possessed. The murder mystery especially kept me turning the pages, and even though I had a basic gist of who the murder was for a portion of the book, I still managed to be a little surprised at how everything turned out in the end. I also loved Violet’s romance subplot. Not only because it developed in a realistic speed but also because it wasn’t a main focus of the story.

Lastly, Alyxandra’s writing was great in this. I had only read one book by Alyxandra prior to this (Hearts at Stake, the first in the Drake chronicles), and while I enjoyed her writing in that one, it took an even better turn in this book. I always felt like I was right there with the characters in the 1870s because of her descriptions, and her characters never failed to jump of the page and come to life. The only aspect I was a little shaky on was how I felt she modernized some of the dialogue between the characters at times.

Full of adventure, mystery, and romance, Haunting Violet is the perfect summer read. Best of all, it contains a solid, standalone ending, and what’s not to love about that?

Grade: B+

Haunting Violet is now out!

Source: Publicist at Bloomsbury/ Walker books- thanks Kate!

To find out more about Alyxandra and her books, be sure to to visit her website.

Book Trailer:


  1. I thought this was really good too. If you've not read the second book in The Drake Chronicles you should...it has a nice bit of historical in their too. My favourite of the series so far.

  2. I agree with you! I hope she writes more historicals. Also, I haven't read The Drake Chronicles yet - but after reading this I can't wait to find time to do so!


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