***Now that I have a baby, I have more time to read, but not enough time to write reviews. Therefore, I’m changing things up a bit. I’ll use the publisher’s summary, and write a paragraph or two with my thoughts. I’m also changing my rating system to five stars.***
(Thanks to Galleysmith for the idea of putting the author’s website in brackets next to their name. She’s so smart!)
Myra Lamb is a wild girl with mysterious, haint blue eyes who grows up on remote Bloodroot Mountain. Her grandmother, Byrdie, protects her fiercely and passes down “the touch” that bewitches people and animals alike. But when John Odom tries to tame Myra, it sparks a shocking disaster, ripping lives apart. Bloodroot is the dark and riveting story of the legacies—of magic and madness, faith and secrets, passion and loss—that haunt one family across the generations.
I’ve been meaning to read Bloodroot by Amy Greene for quite a while, so was pleased when it was chosen for one of my book clubs. The narrative starts out by the story alternately being told by Myra’s childhood friend, Doug, and her grandmother, Byrdie. After about 100 pages, the narrative shifts to Myra’s children, Johnny and Laura, and finally to Myra herself. I thought the author pulled this off fabulously. The story unfolded in such a way that it was like a picture slowly coming in to focus. I haven’t read a book done quite this well in a long time.
The story is rather dark, and the author, even at the end, even with me secretly hoping things would magically get better, doesn’t shy away from the harsh realities of her characters. There’s quite a bit of poverty and ignorance that the characters have to deal with, which broke my heart on at least one occasion. Myra’s daughter, Laura, has her son taken away by CPS because she has a spiteful mother-in-law, but the baby wasn’t being neglected or mistreated. Laura’s inability to make the right decisions or fight back in any way is pitiful and just makes you want to reach out to her and help her.
I should mention that the summary talks about Myra has “the touch”. This is where some summaries aren’t particularly accurate.
The characters are well developed and really come to life. This book won’t be a favorite of the year, but I had a lot of fun reading it and look forward to reading more by Amy Greene.
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars