Finding Colin Firth: A Novel by Mia March
Published by: Gallery Books
Published on: July 9, 2013
Page Count: 336
My Reading Format: Advanced reading edition for Kindle via NetGalley
Available Formats: Paperback and Kindle ebook
Three women, each searching for something specific, spend some of their summer in a small tourist town in Maine. There's Veronica Russo, the 38-year-old diner waitress and talented pie maker who has returned to her hometown to face her past and make peace with the fact that she gave a daughter up for adoption 22 years before. Bea Crane is that daughter, and has just learned in a letter written by her mother before she died that Bea was adopted. She sets out on a journey to find answers and her birth mother. Gemma, a New Yorker, is in a failing marriage and without a job when she realizes she's pregnant. To process everything, Gemma visits Boothbay Harbor, Maine, to sort out what she'll do and when she'll tell her husband that they're expecting. While there, Gemma gets an assignment from the local paper to profile Hope Home, a place where teenage mothers have resided during their pregnancies for decades. It's Gemma's story that causes her to meet Veronica and Bea separately to interview them, and Gemma's story that helps the mother-daughter pair come together. During all of this, the town is abuzz with the anticipation of Colin Firth's arrival any day to Boothbay Harbor to film a movie. The townspeople (and the women in particular) have their eyes peeled for the star.
Though these women have heavy internal struggles, the theme and tone of the book are definitely optimistic. There are Veronica's pies with names like "Spirit Pie," "Confidence Pie," "Happiness Pie" and "Hope Pie," each flavor guaranteed to bring about what its name says. There is Bea's belief that though she's on a break from school and work, she'll return to both and become a teacher. While Gemma isn't sure her marriage will work out, she knows she'll remain true to herself no matter what happens. And everyone in town is full of anticipation for Colin Firth as his movie crew moves into town and starts filming.
I'll be honest that I picked this book review solely because of its title (who doesn't love Colin Firth?), and I loved that the novel is filled with references to his movies, personal life, and, ahem, the Mr. Darcy lake scene in BBC's Pride and Prejudice miniseries (unfamiliar or just need to see it again?). But the book really held my interest, and not because I kept waiting for Colin Firth to make his appearance. The characters are memorable and readers will just simply want everything to work out perfectly for all three of the women.
Speaking of the Mr. Darcy lake scene, it's just been named the most memorable moment in British television (read the article).
Four out of five stars
If you liked this book, you’ll like Where the Heart Is (book and movie), Pride and Prejudice, Bridget Jones's Diary, Midnight in Austenland, A Grown-Up Kind of Pretty, Waitress (movie) and any movie starring Colin Firth, of course.