Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read.” —Groucho Marx

Friday, November 8, 2013

Blackberry Winter by Sarah Jio...A Review

Good Morning Peeps!   Hope this finds you all well and well read :).

Before we get started with this review, Let me wish my best work friend, Jeanne a Happy Birthday which occurred on the 4th and to my friend Frieda, Happy Birthday on the 7th!   I told you we have many birthdays to celebrate in November.

When you participate in virtual book tours, you do get a lot of reading material for free, with the author or their agent seeking a favorable, and honest review.   Frankly, if I can't find something good about the book, I will not publish a less than 3 wink review on my blog or anywhere else.   It is fortunate for most, that I love to read and I enjoy most books.

I have to tell you though, I have set a goal and I want to meet in person Sarah Jio.   I think she is one of my all time favorite authors and I believe she always will be.   She never fails to deliver!    She stirs my heart like no one else can!    When and if this 61 yr old woman ever grows up and writes her own novel, I hope Sarah will enjoy it as I have enjoyed her books.   I want to follow in her footsteps....enough said....(I am not a stalker).

Synopsis from Goodreads:

In 2011, Sarah Jio burst onto the fiction scene with two sensational novels--The Violets of March and The Bungalow. With Blackberry Winter--taking its title from a late-season, cold-weather phenomenon--Jio continues her rich exploration of the ways personal connections can transcend the boundaries of time. 

Seattle, 1933. Single mother Vera Ray kisses her three-year-old son, Daniel, goodnight and departs to work the night-shift at a local hotel. She emerges to discover that a May-Day snow has blanketed the city, and that her son has vanished. Outside, she finds his beloved teddy bear lying face-down on an icy street, the snow covering up any trace of his tracks, or the perpetrator's.
Seattle, 2010. Seattle Herald reporter Claire Aldridge, assigned to cover the May 1 "blackberry winter" storm and its twin, learns of the unsolved abduction and vows to unearth the truth. In the process, she finds that she and Vera may be linked in unexpected ways...

Meet Author,  Sarah Jio:

Sarah Jio is the New York Times bestselling author of THE LAST CAMELLIA, BLACKBERRY WINTER, THE VIOLETS OF MARCH (a Library Journal Best Book of 2011), THE BUNGALOW, and the forthcoming, MORNING GLORY (11/26/13), all from Penguin/Plume. Sarah is also the former health and fitness blogger for Glamour.com. She has written thousands of articles for national magazines including Redbook, O, The Oprah Magazine, Glamour, SELF, Real Simple, Fitness, Marie Claire, and many others. She has appeared as a commentator on NPR’s Morning Edition. Sarah lives in Seattle with her husband and their three young boys. 

From My Perspective:

Sarah Jio has the amazing ability to traverse time in a unique and distinctive manner.  Blackberry Winter is just such a novel.   It begins during the1920,s when a young woman fell in love, conceived a child with a man above her class in society, realized she couldn't survive in his world or he in hers.  In
1930, their child was three and she was desperately trying to support them.   A terrible snowstorm struck their town in May and she left the three year old home alone.   When she returned he was gone.   And Vera's young life definitely took a turn for the worst.

The story is told from alternating points of view, Vera the young mother from the thirties and Claire, a journalist with an assignment to write about another cold front and blizzard in May some eighty years later.   Claire lost her firstborn in the eighth month of pregnancy.   During her research, she found the story of the missing boy, Danny and vowed to find what had happened to him and his loving mother, Vera.

Back in those days, everything was a struggle of class.  If you were poor, the law was not in your corner.   If you were high society, your secrets would be kept and you were safe from investigation.
Definitely not a time I would have appreciated living in.  Sarah was able to define the character's of these two women who shared the loss of their children.   She developed her characters carefully and exposed their inner strengths, their weaknesses and their dreams.

This is a story of hope and love that transcends time.  Tears stained my cheeks as I read through this tragedy, especially the last third of the book, where mysteries were brought to light and resolutions occurred.    It is certainly a love story told from a compassionate heart!    I give it a 5 WINK rating!

I am only regretting it took this long to get to read it!   I'll be thinking about this read for quite some time!  If you haven't read it yet, stock up on tissues and read this amazing book.

Disclaimer:  I read for my pleasure.   I may receive ARC copies for review purposes, but I am not compensated for my reviews .  I like to read and I like to share my reviews.   I post my thoughts without prejudice or bias.  The words are mine and I write reviews based on my humble opinion.  I will admit, I seldom meet a book I don't like. I actually purchased this in paperback.   

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