Title: Country of Red Azaleas
Author: Domnica Radulescu
Publication date: April 5, 2016
Genre: Woman’s Fiction
Source: Received for an honest review
Book Description (from Amazon)
From the moment Marija walks into Lara’s classroom, freshly moved to Serbia from Sarajevo, Lara is enchanted by her vibrant beauty, confidence, and wild energy–and knows that the two are destined to be lifelong friends. Closer than sisters, the girls share everything, from stolen fruit and Hollywood movies as girls to philosophies and even lovers as young women. But when the Bosnian War pits their homelands against each other in a bloodbath, Lara and Marija are forced to separate for the first time: romantic Lara heads to America with her Hollywood-handsome new husband, and fierce Marija returns to her native Sarajevo to combat the war through journalism behind Bosnian lines.
In America, Lara seeks fulfillment through work and family, but when news from Marija ceases, the uncertainty torments Lara, driving her on a quest to find her friend. As Lara travels through war-torn Serbia and Bosnia, following clues that may yet lead to the flesh-and-blood Marija, she must also wrestle with truths about her own identity.
Told in lush, vivid prose, COUNTRY OF RED AZALEAS is a poignant testament to both the power of friendship and our ability to find meaning and beauty in the face of devastation.
Country of Red Azaleas was a story of two women’s friendship over the span of their lives. From war to separation of continents, these two women have been through it all. Lara and Marija were best friends with Marija being the wilder one. Lara, on the other hand, was more conservative. Many adventures happened in Marjia’s life as a reporter, where she ends up covering the war. Lara marries an American professor and moves to Washington, DC. Eventually the two lose touch and Lara is concerned that Marjia did not survive the war.
I have to say that although parts of this story had me turning the pages, more often than not, I needed to put it down and pick it up later. I found certain parts were described in too much detail and dragged on. Yet at other times, it felt too rushed. The character of Lara seemed to be self-absorbed and maybe that was the intent. The character development for Marija seemed to be well-developed. Overall, it wasn’t a bad read but I did find the end came to abruptly.
Heat Rating: None
Reviewed by: KellyR
Courtesy of My Book Addiction and More