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Publisher's Summary

Moments after Lisbeth is born, she’s taken from her mother and handed over to an enslaved wet nurse, Mattie, a young mother separated from her own infant son in order to care for her tiny charge. Thus begins an intense relationship that will shape both of their lives for decades to come. Though Lisbeth leads a life of privilege, she finds nothing but loneliness in the company of her overwhelmed mother and her distant, slave-owning father. As she grows older, Mattie becomes more like family to Lisbeth than her own kin and the girl’s visits to the slaves’ quarters - and their lively and loving community - bring them closer together than ever. But can two women in such disparate circumstances form a bond like theirs without consequence? This deeply moving tale of unlikely love traces the journey of these very different women as each searches for freedom and dignity.

©2014 Laila Ibrahim (P)2014 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Story

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Beautiful southern historical fiction

I read this book in print back in 2012 and if I remember right I read it in Bahni’s voice so was very happy to listen to the real thing. Bahni Turpin’s narration was amazing; she is such a great narrator. Every character has their own voice and her male voices are great too. She makes this story come to life and embodies every character and makes them real.


This is a beautifully written book about a young white girl Lisbeth or Miss Elizabeth as her parents want her known as who grows up on Fair Oaks Plantation in the 1800’s. When Lisbeth is born she is handed from her mother to slave/wet-nurse Mattie who has been taken from the Quarters and her newborn son to the Big House and Elizabeth’s mother thinks she should be so grateful to be living in the lap of luxury. As time goes on Lisbeth learns to love and depend on Mattie much more than her own mother but Lisbeth is young and naïve and doesn’t realize there is much more to life on the plantation than she is seeing.

This is a coming of age story as we watch Lisbeth from the time she is born till she is a grown woman, we watch as innocence is replaced with knowledge and knowledge is not always a happy thing. This realization is a slow building and at times Lisbeth doesn’t want to see but when the time comes she has to make a choice- “ Decisions to make, she thought to herself. She was too tired to make any more decisions.”

I loved the character of Mattie she has this outlook on life that is inspiring especially considering the life she lives as a slave. And even though she had to leave her own child to take care of Lisbeth she loved the girl.

These characters were so real to me I could hear their voices in my head; I could see what they saw. This author gave voice to these people in such a beautiful way I can’t even come close to finding the correct words to explain it. This is a debut novel and I am amazed by that and hope this author writes many. Many more books because I plan on reading them all!

Beautiful southern historical fiction I highly recommend!

5 Stars

89 of 90 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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A rare find, a 5 star book!

I don't rate all good books with 5 stars, but I have absolutely nothing to nitpick about this audiobook. I enjoyed everything about it, and I am sure it will remain in my memory for a long time to come.

I am often wary of reading a "slave" book, just like I am of a "holocaust" book. It takes some emotional bracing and mental preparation beforehand, but I will not avoid these two heartrending and important subjects.

This book was beautifully written. The characters were well-developed and all very believable. Whether I loved them or hated them, I could surely understand their motivations and behaviors based on the times and the setting they resided in. The slavery period can make for very sad and uncomfortable reading, but author Ibrahim handled this with finesse, neither appealing to or manipulating our emotions and our guilt, nor glossing over it to make it more palatable. I feel the story was well-balanced and the facts of the period were presented in a non-preachy and non-exaggerated manner.

The story was engrossing to me. I really cared what happened to the two main characters, Mattie and Lisbeth. I held my breath at times when they exhibited behaviors that would likely put them in real danger, and I sighed with relief when it seemed that they would be all right. The ending was very intense and emotional--I listened with rapt attention, even though I believed I knew what was going to happen. This book is an example of what I refer to as "an author taking care of their readers."

The narration, in case you are wondering, was just perfect. I hope to find more audiobooks narrated by Turpin in the future.

122 of 126 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Amazing!

just do it, read this book. it is an amazing and unforgettable journey. I do recommend!

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Completely Enjoyable

This story is touching and enjoyable, and challenges one's assumptions about relationships, care-taking, roles in society and the pre-Civil War south. This certainly isn't a ground-breaking book, but it is a sweet and thoughtful story.

35 of 39 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Best Book Ever!

What made the experience of listening to Yellow Crocus the most enjoyable?

How the story was told, almost as if you were there.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Mattie of course!

What about Bahni Turpin’s performance did you like?

She just knows how to tell the story. I have listened to some of her other books also. Her voice is calm.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

That is for sure!! I hated leaving this book to do other chores:-( I didn't want the story to end!!!!

Any additional comments?

THIS JUST TOOK THE PLACE OF THE BEST BOOK I HAVE EVER LISTENED TO!!!

30 of 34 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Wonderful!

I loved this book. It was made all the more special by the fabulous narrator. At times I cried for the pain of the former lifestyle of slavery. But the love between two beautiful souls transcended and my tears of joy in the last two chapters will make this book one of my favorites forever.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Truly exceptional!

Absolutely masterful performance of a stunningly powerful and brilliant story. It was so very well written and told. Only personal histories like this can give us honest glimpses of the true brokenness borne of the tragedy of the slavery in our country. And this is but a small glimpse of that pain-- and the indoctrination and blindness which helped perpetuate this injustice...and the personal courage required to break free and create a new life.

The narrator was the absolute performer I have ever experienced! A masterpiece!

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A Powerful Story Well Told

I loved this book! It is a compelling tale about the evils of slavery and the resilience of the human spirit. I recommend it highly.

29 of 33 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Pulls at your heart strings

This was my first experience with audible. I chose the book because of cost after downloading the app. I am so very pleased with this my selection. This is not something that I normally read, but I absolutely fell in love with the story line, era, and the characters. I couldn't wait til bedtime for the last week so I could put in my earbuds and listen the more of the story. I am going to pick up a paperback version for my mother now. I know she will enjoy it just as much as I have. Wonderful story of love and real life. Although I cannot personally relate to the time and ways of life, I felt as the author did a great job of portraying how things really were. Fabulous story.

23 of 27 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Great Book

What did you love best about Yellow Crocus?

Everything

What did you like best about this story?

It is so heart warming.

Which character – as performed by Bahni Turpin – was your favorite?

Mattie

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Too many to chose one

Any additional comments?

Could not put this down. Listened to it in one day.

21 of 26 people found this review helpful

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  • Ann D
  • 02-07-15

Fantastic, loved it!

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Absolutely! A great story, perfectly narrated.

What other book might you compare Yellow Crocus to, and why?

The Help.

Any additional comments?

I found this to be a fabulous novel. I'm amazed to discover that no agent would take it on because they believed there would be no market for a story! It was published by the author herself in the end. Its a fantastic portrayal of an enslaved black woman and a privileged white woman, from when they were wet nurse and baby, then spanning over 22 years. The writing was beautiful, transporting me in time and place until I felt like I was right there with them, watching from the sidelines. All of the characters were so well drawn and I loved how the story naturally evolved into two parts - Maddie's narrative, followed by Lisbeth's. I also found the ending to be perfect.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • sue
  • 09-01-14

impulse purchase

Impulse but well worth it, lovely book slightly slow but not a problem.
The accent of young Lisbeth was a bit grating but thats my only moan.
No tears but I really enjoyed it.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Mrs
  • 08-20-16

A relationship transcending race, colour & creed

It is quite rare for me to read and enjoy a book that is character rather than plot driven but this one is an exception to the rule. The novel centres on the relationship between Lisbeth, eldest child of white plantation owners and Mattie, her black wet nurse, a relationship that transcends race, colour, creed and age. There are many occasions when their love and respect for each other is obvious and although helpless to change Mattie’s slave status Lisbeth neither views her nor treats her as a slave.

The fact that Mattie is able to wet nurse Lisbeth shows that she has been torn away from her own child, a boy that she only permitted to see weekly. There is a very sad episode where she struggles to breastfeed him because he hasn’t bonded with her. Despite this Mattie doesn’t resent Lisbeth for the enforced separation.

This is a beautifully written book, very easy to read and very difficult to put down. It doesn’t shy away from horrors of slavery but it also tells of the courage and strength of both the leading ladies who ultimately want to escape from an unacceptable lifestyle and enter a world where all humans are treated equally.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Sigrin
  • 04-20-17

Gentle Deep South Slave story

If you enjoyed the Help you will like this.

It was a gentle tale of Mattie the black wet nurse who had to almost give up on her own son to breast feed and take care of the new born white baby miss Elizabeth.

The story is about their intertwined lives and the sacrifices they both made to get the life they wanted without forgetting each other.

Some of the descriptions of childbirth and breastfeeding were so passionately written it took me back with fond memories.

Definitely a female orientated book, certainly not choc lit and I really enjoyed this true story.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • janet goudie
  • 06-13-17

Wonderful

Yellow Crocus is a moving and absorbing story, one I couldn't put down. I was transformed to a different time, a world very unfamiliar to me. I hope to discover more by the same author and narrator. Wonderful!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • sylvia
  • 06-09-17

New Author

Really enjoyed this audiobook. Easy to listen to in small parts while out walking or on longer drives.
I have not read/listened to Laila Ibrahim before but will look out for further works by her.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Musical Original
  • 04-17-17

I loved this book

I listened to it in one go. Couldn't put it down. The gentle lilting accents of the narrator, the detailed description and observations of 19th century life in Virginia - for both slaves and white folks. It took me into a fascinating world that stayed with me long after the book was finished. Highly recommended.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Kindle Customer
  • 08-08-16

Great reading

I was not sure about this book at the begging. As I got into to it it was great would read it again or recommend it to someone else.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazon Customer reader
  • 08-07-16

yellow crocus

yellow crocus was an excellent book really enjoyed it especially on audio version worth a listen

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • tricia
  • 08-03-16

Yellow Crocus

Riveting from start to finish. A true love story spanning many years between a nurse and her charge

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-03-18

An Excellent book.

I loved this book. I know that though fiction the story would have been taken from actual happenings of life as it was in that time.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Cally
  • 05-12-17

Moving and beautiful

Such an incredibly beautiful story. Sad, joyful, terrible and brilliant, do your self a favour and buy this book. It's absolutely gorgeous

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Kindle Customer
  • 04-13-17

great read

enjoyed this book immensely. very well performed by the narrator. I recommend this book. great read.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Jo M.
  • 09-22-16

Thoroughly enjoyable all the way through

loved the narrator, she was excellent made the characters come to life, thoroughly enjoyable story

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • alison
  • 06-04-15

An enjoyable story

Enjoyable story if a little predictable. Good characters, helped by Bahni Turpin's excellent naration. A pleasant tale of lives intertwined during the years of change preceding the American Civil war, and an interesting incite into the plantation slaves and their owners.