Seattle, 1933: Vera Ray kisses her three-year-old son, Daniel, good night and reluctantly leaves for work. She hates the night shift, but it’s the only way she can earn enough to keep destitution at bay. In the morning - even though it’s the second of May - a heavy snow is falling. Vera rushes to wake Daniel, but his bed is empty. His teddy bear lies outside in the snow.
Seattle, present day: On the second of May, Seattle Herald reporter Claire Aldridge awakens to another late-season snowstorm. Assigned to cover this "blackberry winter" and its predecessor decades earlier, Claire learns of Daniel’s unsolved abduction and vows to unearth the truth - only to discover that she and Vera are linked in unexpected ways.
©2012 Sarah Jio (P)2012 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
Perhaps people who like a highly emotionally-charged book, but don't care for literary-style writing. Perhaps someone with children. But, honestly, I wouldn't recommend this book to anyone I know.
It was bothersome how everything just seemed to be such a coincidence, but each "twist" and "turn" was really predictable. The characters the protagonist meets are too convenient to helping her in her story. So much so that it became annoying.
When she tried to create a scene that was light-hearted, or funny, (which the protaganist's best friend was supposed to do) it came off as cheesy, clunky, and unnatural.
The cliche critique of the wealthy and entire theme of the book being poor vs. rich also got old. There are plenty of well-written books about the plight of the poor that don't spell it out so obviously and simply, citing each time a person with any money does something terrible, or would do something terrible, and contrasting it with a person with little means doing something wonderful or having a good heart. It's as if the author believes the reader is too stupid to pick up on what she is trying to say.
Her voice quavered the entire time, whether the characters were upset or scared, or happy (which, admittedly, was rare). She over-acted, which got pretty irritating. She definitely varied her voices & some might say she did it well, I just didn't care for her voices & theatrics.
Although it didn't grab me right at the first, when it did it would not let go!! I couldn't stop listening to this book and it's characters.
I especially like her moments with the grandfather (don't want to be specific) BUT would really recommend someone make this into a movie for Lifetime (or such). I have not been so moved in a long time.
PLEASE send this to a screenwriter!!!!
From the cover design and the book's title, at first glance I thought this might be a romance novel, and had a moment of regret after purchase. However, I was pleasantly surprised, as the story evolves as relatively original and the author weaves the present and past in a very believable and relatable way, with past-to-present story lines that are somewhat similar or at least parallel.
Though romantic love is a theme, it's not the primary one, as the novel deals with larger issues like personal growth, motivation, the definition of true "success", and how we handle life's curve balls; how we play the hand we're given.
I appreciated the main character's perspective from an in-law attached to a high-profile and wealthy family, as many on the outside can think that once you marry into wealth and influence your life is solved. But that's not always the case, and there are downsides.The protagonist struggles to find her own way, establish herself independently of her husband's powerful and prestigious family. She does manage to succeed at this and in the end becomes more than just another appendage to a family with far-reaching power and influence.
I think the plot trajectory is clever, well-conceived and somewhat original. I am sure there are other novels with a similar story but I haven't encountered them, so to me this narrative has legs beyond what at first seems to be simply about a reporter just trying to find a story. And it's all deftly mixed in with the specter of a recent personal tragedy that adds color and depth.
I am only giving this book 4 out of 5, however, because the ending was resolved for me way before the last few chapters, and those sections, seeming like filler, just dragged annoyingly on and on. This part didn't seem to fit - perhaps added as a recommendation from an editor, because the primary reveal was accomplished well in advance of the final chapters.
Still, well worth the purchase and highly deserving of a credit.
I liked the setting back in the 30s and the switching back and forth in time. The characters were interesting--two young women facing the loss of their children.
I would recommend with reservations. It is a bit Nicholas Sparks, but not quite as clichéd.
She didn't get in the way of the story.
The best part of the book occurs in the 30s. The modern day character doesn't read as well.
This was as unique a plot as I've seen in a long time, and I liked the shifts from present to past, but the it would have been much stronger without the ungainly coincidences. Good character development and good sense of the lives of the poor in the 1930s. Worth the time.
I don't think this particular audiobook was time well spent - although I connected with the characters and was mildly interesting in the dual plot (one happening in the 30s, one present day), I found the plot dragged and the writing was cliched and a little sappy. Although the title speaks of Winter, my feeling is this a pleasant beach read at best....if you have the patience.
I did not want it to end. Great way to bring a story together. Applauds
Listening to contemporary and historical fiction, mysteries/thrillers, and the occasional bio or memoir. Narration is key; nothing is more distracting than a poor telling of a good story! My rating scale: 5=Love It; 4 = Like It; 3 = It's Okay; 2 = Not So Good; 1 = Bad, Really Bad.
The over-enunciating, over emphatic narrator practically ruined this story for me. Add that to the rather predictable, formula-driven plot and this became an average if not less than average read at best. Still, there was something captivating about the plot. . . pitting poor against wealthy and overcoming the ravages of time to open old memories and uncover new evidence. So I'll give it a weak, wavering one-thumbs-up.
A solid 9 out of 10.
Great plot, not at all predictable. I defintely liked out descriptive the author was, it made you feel like you were there in the story.
I would defintely reccomend this to other people, I already have! I want to get a few copies for christmas gifts!
I found this book to be quite enjoyable. I had to paint my kitchen and found that I wanted to keep working late into the night just to finish. I won't say that this is the best book ever, but if you want to be entertained and get lost in a story this is a good choice. There were a few parts that seemed a bit cheesy and the author created a few situations that seemed a bit too convenient, but if you can set those aside you will enjoy.
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