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Blackberry Winter: A Novel by Sarah Jio

Blackberry Winter: A Novel (original 2012; edition 2012)

by Sarah Jio

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4094737,112 (3.86)23
Title:Blackberry Winter: A Novel
Authors:Sarah Jio
Info:Plume (2012), Edition: 1 Original, Paperback, 320 pages
Collections:Your library

Work details

Blackberry Winter by Sarah Jio (2012)

  1. 10
    The Light Between Oceans by M. L. Stedman (dara85)
    dara85: This takes place in the past (1930's), a child is taken and goes to live with another family, involves a crime

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English (48)  Italian (1)  All languages (49)
Showing 1-5 of 48 (next | show all)
My blog post about this book is at this link. ( )
  SuziQoregon | Apr 26, 2018 |
A blackberry winter is a colloquial expression used in the Southern and Midwest sections of North America. It refers to a cold snap in occurs in the later spring when the blackberries are in bloom. To me, it seemed odd then that this story takes place in the state of Washington, and Google was no help in researching if the tasty fruit grows in the Pacific Northwest or not. It’s of little consequence since the title is one of the main reasons I picked up this novel. The other reason is one that always captures my attention: dualing timelines.

In this novel the story vacillates between 1933 and current time. On May 1, 1933, a snowstorm rattled Seattle. In contemporary times, another snowstorm blankets the city on May 2.

In 1933, the Great Depression is strangling America. Vera Ray is lucky. She has a job as a night maid at one of the local hotels. The downside is that she’s forced to leave her three-year-old son, Daniel, home alone.

In present day, Claire Aldridge is a feature writer for the Seattle Herald. Her editor assigns her the task of writing a 6,000 word piece on the blackberry winter in two days. She isn’t thrilled and is wondering where she is going to find enough interesting info to create a piece of that magnitude. Not only is she face with a seemingly impossible task, her marriage is on the verge of collapse.

Digging through the archives, Claire discovers that Vera’s son disappeared without a trace. The only thing she ever found was Daniel’s teddy bear, Max, face down in the snow. There were no reports of is ever being found. Having recently lost a child, Claire is eager to learn what happened to Vera and Daniel. And so the hunt begins.The story weaves back and forth across the decades.

Blackberry Winter isn’t the best written novel I’ve ever read. However, it kept my attention, and I didn’t want to put it down. Jio’s third novel receives 5 out of 5 stars for those reasons. ( )
  juliecracchiolo | Jan 19, 2018 |
This was a story about family secrets revealed. I have read another book by this author and really loved it while I did not get as caught up in this story as the other one it was not a bad read. ( )
  Thelmajean | Jan 17, 2018 |
In present-day Seattle, an early May snowstorm, dubbed a "blackberry winter", surprises its residents. Claire, a reporter, is assigned to write a story about the weather anomaly, connecting it to a similar occurrence on the same date in 1933 Seattle. As she begins to research, she becomes intrigued by the disappearance of a young child on that day in 1933, and vows to solve the unsolved mystery.

I've read several of Sarah Jio's novels now, and some I've enjoyed and some I've thought were rather mediocre. I liked this one for the most part. It tied the past and present together well, and the characters were mostly likable. There were a few cliche's and/or predictable moments, but not overly so, and I wanted to keep reading to find out how everything would resolve itself. ( )
  indygo88 | Dec 21, 2017 |
Very good and enjoyable story. Looking forward to reading another one of her stories. ( )
  EadieB | Jun 1, 2016 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0452298385, Paperback)


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...

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 17:58:07 -0400)

"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"--… (more)

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Average: (3.86)
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2 7
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