Remember I requested some books from my online library and they immediately came?? One of the books was All the Forgivenesses by Elizabeth Hardinger. I’ll admit to picking this partly because of the cover. I love hardscrabble books….books were people live with poverty and rise above. For some reason, looking at the cover, I hoped this might be one of those.
This was a book I gave you the opportunity to read along if you’d like. Did you? What did you think?
I know I’m going to like a book if it catches me in the first 5 minutes and this one did. Bertie is someone hard not to love. The thing about this book, there isn’t an amazing plot. There isn’t a huge climax. There are pivotal points though…points that Bertie puts a lot of stock in and those points shape her life.
I loved the book as we to as humans all have points in our lives that pivot us in certain directions….some good, some not so good. Unfortunately we all have a tendency to focus on the not so good ones just like Bertie does in the story. I think anyone reading this can relate to Bertie in some way and that is what had me liking the book even though there was no huge climax.
Here’s what Amazon had to say:
“Growing up on their hardscrabble farm in rural Kentucky, fifteen-year-old Albertina “Bertie” Winslow has learned a lot from her mama, Polly. She knows how to lance a boil, make a pie crust, butcher a pig, and tend to every chore that needs doing. What she doesn’t know, but is forced to reckon with all too soon, is how to look after children as a mother should …
When Polly succumbs to a long illness, Bertie takes on responsibility for her four younger siblings and their dissolute, unreliable daddy. Yet no matter how hard she tries to hold the family together, the task is overwhelming. Nine-year-old Dacia, especially, is resentful and stubborn, hinting at secrets in their mama’s life. Finally, Bertie makes the only choice she can—breaking up the family for its own survival, keeping the girls with her, sending the boys off to their grown brothers, long gone from home.
Ever pragmatic, Bertie marries young, grateful to find a husband willing to take on the care of her sisters, and eventually moves to the oil fields of Kansas. But marriage alone cannot resolve the grief and guilt she carries over a long-ago tragedy, or prepare her for the heartaches still to come. Only by confronting wrenching truths can she open herself to joy—and learn how to not only give, but receive, unfettered love.
Inspired by stories told by the author’s mother and aunts, All the Forgivenesses is as authentic as it is lyrical—a captivating novel of family loyalty, redemption, and resilience.”
Amazon readers gave the book 4.4 stars. I’m going to agree. It was just the kind of book I like with a coming of age theme. I’m off to check to see if the author has more books. Fingers cross she does and that my online library has them.
If you are interested, you can find the book on Amazon HERE.