Book Review 78: The Witch of Painted Sorrows by M.J. Rose

Posted on March 17, 2015 «
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book review witch of painted sorrows mj rose

I was excited to receive a copy of The Witch of Painted Sorrows by M.J. Rose from Atria for review. I fell under Ms. Rose’s enchantments after zooming through the first four books in The Reincarnationist series a few years ago. I discovered that her books often combine the paranormal with mysticism and historical fiction. She is deft at sharing history and creating suspense that keeps me turning the pages.

Sadly, I was disappointed upon finishing The Witch of Painted Sorrows. The elements that I love about Ms. Rose’s books were there, but it just didn’t quite come together. I felt Rose was holding something back. The history of La Lune, her power and her connection to the occult were never quite revealed. It was hiding there in the shadows and it became quite frustrating waiting and wondering when it would all spill out. Because things were not revealed and did not quite come together, the ending was muddled, rushed, confusing and unsatisfying.

I loved Sandrine’s passion and desire to become her own person in a time when women were not necessarily allowed to do so. I admired her bravery to stand up to her husband and escape an abusive relationship. The downside to Sandrine’s character is that it was hard to figure out whether her decisions (after her arrival in Paris) were her own or were due to the influence of La Lune. I believe that Sandrine naturally possessed some of those characteristics. However, she’s influenced by La Lune so quickly, you do not get to know much about Sandrine alone to know which actions are hers versus those of La Lune.

Despite my love for past books by M.J. Rose, I was not impressed with this latest release. The story fell short by not revealing enough and what was revealed led to a messy, stalker-ish ending that made my skin crawl (and not in a good way). The Witch of Painted Sorrows by M.J. Rose receives a thumbs down.

After Thoughts

After finishing the novel, one part continues to bother me. Sandrine attended the opera where Charlotte was performing. Her date for the evening guides her to an underground safe spot within the opera house. How the hell did Sandrine get out of there?


The Quick Review

book review witch of painted sorrows mj rose

The Witch of Painted Sorrows

Author: M.J. Rose
Published on: March 17, 2015
Pages: 384
Genres: adult, historical fiction, mystery, paranormal, romance, suspense-or-thriller
Goodreads • Amazon Affiliate Link
My Rating: Thumbs Down


I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.





3 responses to “Book Review 78: The Witch of Painted Sorrows by M.J. Rose

  1. Bookworm Brandee

    Aww, I’m sorry this one didn’t work for you, Terri. It’s always disappointing when a favorite author lets us down. Rose is on my must read list and I have to say that your description of her previous works has me really eager to read her. But this one probably won’t make it onto the list.

    • Yes, this one was just odd. It seemed rushed, not well put together. When I looked back over the review my brain is still stuck on the plot hole of Sandrine in the basement of the Opera House. I need to LET IT GO!

      Terri M., the Director
      Second Run Reviews