Cover Image: In the Blink of an Eye

In the Blink of an Eye

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Member Reviews

The Brennan’s have uprooted and moved to a totally different place. The family, Finn, Bridget, Jarrah and Toby are just working hard to adjust to a whole new environment. New jobs, new friends, new school is tough on everybody. Then the unthinkable happens. It tears the family apart.

Jarrah is a young boy coming to terms with who he is. When the tragedy strikes he has to take on an adult role he is not ready for. Bridget is so wracked with guilt and anger she makes some self-destructive decisions. Then there is Finn. He is so determined to protect and keep his family together, he loses sight of who he is.

This is an emotional story. Each person in this family deals with the heartbreak differently and it takes a huge toll on the family as a unit. This novel takes you in an emotional roller coaster. It is hard to read in places because it rips your heart to pieces.

Don’t miss this tale of love, strength, hope and forgiveness.

I received this novel from St. Martin’s Press for a honest review.
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This book had me so emotionally connected to the characters! I couldn't put it down. The story is of loss, grief, acceptance, and so much more! This is hands down one of the best books I've read this year!

Thank you #netgalley and #stmartinspress for an early copy to review!
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For some reason I was extremely worried I wouldn't like this book. I ended up really enjoying. The cover of the book does not do the story justice. I loved the author's writing style. It completely drew me into the story. This book is incredibly sad and follows a family trying to deal with a horrible tragedy. Finn, Bridget and Jarrah each grieve in separate ways. Finn would do anything for his family and pretty much does. Of all the characters, I liked Bridget the least. Actually, I had a hard time liking her at all. I wanted her to see how much her husband loved her and his family. He was willing to take all the blame to protect her. I did love Bridget's job with the koalas. After finishing the book, I reread the prologue and it definitely makes more sense to me now. Was Meredith really there to offer support for the family or was she there with ulterior motives? I felt like she might have been there to help gather evidence in support of her cause. She not not have been the right volunteer to help the Brennan family. I loved Tom. He was the perfect friend for Jarrah and helped the family deal with their loss. The author's note was heartbreaking and this book was definitely a labor of love. This book was full of love and forgiveness.

I definitely recommend the book and can't wait to read more books by the author.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from St. Martin's Press through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
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Many thanks to NetGalley, St Martin's Press, and Jesse Blackadder for the opportunity to read and review this emotional novel.  4.5 stars to a book I couldn't put down.

In the blink of an eye is all it takes for tragedy to strike and to change a family's world forever.  How does a family go forward after that without succumbing to guilt, blame, anger?  Can a family ever be whole again?

This is one of those books that packs an emotional punch because you constantly think, There but for the grace of God.  It's also one of those books that the less said better so you can immerse yourself in this book.  I basically read this book in a day because I just had to see how it would all turn out.

Powerful story about loss, grief, forgiveness.
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A lyrically beautiful psychological examination of family, forgiveness, coming of age, trust, and hope, IN THE BLINK OF AN EYE is set in rural New South Wales, Australia. A family that nearly broke up due to infidelity instead moves across country in an attempt to heal its fractures. But disaster waits for no one, and the family is soon poised to blow apart again. Beautifully imaged and imaginatively drawn, this novel is a comprehensive family portrait.
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Thank you so much to St. Martins Press and NetGalley for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

I feel like I'm in the minority here because I really didn't like this book.  It did peak my interest in the beginning but at the same time I was confused by the dialogue.  It was kind of all over the place and numerous times I found myself lost to what was going on in the book.  Also it really irritated me that the fifteen-year-old was tasked with always watching his baby brother while his parents both "worked".  The fact that the mom had no clue how to even get both of them ready in the mornings was horrible.

This book is about a family that recently moved due to the husband Finn cheating on his wife Bridget with her best friend.  They have two sons, Jared and Toby, and Bridget is the main bread winner in the family until Finn finds out his art is going to be showcased and is looking at getting a lot of money.  It seems like everything is going good for the family in their new home until a tragedy occurs that rocks their worlds.  Each one takes the blame for it in their own way and their family starts shattering.

I wasn't a huge fan of any of the characters in this book and honestly I found the parents Finn and Bridget really creepy.  Who swims naked with their fifteen year old son?  Also like I said before, Jared was tasked with pretty much always watching his younger brother while still trying to be a kid himself and go to school.  That really annoyed me since the dad was the one supposed to be keeping an eye on him while the mom worked.  The obsession that Jared had with his litter brother was also creepy and that somehow made him think that he was gay was another poor point in the book for me.  And don't even get me started on the ending, the parents go into the pool turned into a pond and have sex and then......?  

All in all I really didn't care for this book.  I understand it was the author's own story from losing her little sister to a drowning when she was younger but if that's how her life really played out after the tragedy I honestly feel sorry for her.
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What can happen in the blink of an eye? Look away for one minute and your world can fall apart. This is a devastating story of tragedy, loss and grief. It is the story of the far reaching effects that one single moment can have on the lives of those involved. It is also the story of love and hope and how these emotions, although buried deep during the aftermath of the tragedy, can resurface and help to begin the healing process. Well-written and highly recommended. Thanks to St Martin’s Press and NetGalley for the ARC.
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In the Blink of an Eye is a thought provoking story about a family confronting an unimaginable tragedy. Finn and Bridget live in Australia with their two sons. Jarrah is fifteen and dotes on Toby, his two-year-old brother. The family lives in a home with a swimming pool and one morning when Bridget is distracted Toby disappears.
Though the plot is excruciatingly sad, Blackadder's skilled writing encourages the reader to hope for a positive outcome. In the Blink of an Eye is a fresh outlook on a tragic story.
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In the Blink of an Eye is a novel that will break your heart - and help you find forgiveness and closure as you work through the grief, and find ways to aid others to achieve acceptance and the path to serenity as you yourself must do. Jesse Blackadder writes from a place of personal knowledge, and her very sincerity can help the reader find peace within.  I started out reading a fictional account of a tragedy and ended finding answers long hidden in a tragedy of my own.  Thank you, Jesse Blackadder, for sharing with us your understanding of grief. The first thing your mind does in an instant of life-changing pain is looking for blame.  And you can always find a reason to blame yourself.  This is a book I am grateful to recommend to friends and family. It is a story all parents should read.    

I received a free electronic copy of this novel from Netgalley, Jesse Blackadder, and St. Martin's Press in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you all for sharing your hard work with me.
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n "In the Blink of an Eye", Jesse Blackadder takes the reader inside the Brennan family; Finn, Bridget, and sons Jarrah 15, and Toby, 2. Newly moved from Tasmania to New South Wales, they each are trying to find a way to adjust to their new climate and life. 

When the unthinkable happens, and little Toby is lost to them, their lives are turned upside down. In the face of overwhelming grief, they each begin to isolate themselves from the other family members, unable to bear up under anything but the weight of their own emotions.

Told in the alternating POVs of Finn, Bridget and Jarrah, Blackadder presents the reader with a finely drawn character-driven novel that is heart-wrenching, highly emotive and entirely believable. It is hard at times, to be part of this intense look into grief, love, letting go and starting to move on. A very good read indeed!

My thanks to Jordan Hanley of St. Martin's Press for allowing me to read an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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Sometimes explicable, tragic events happen without any warning.  This book is just that and the what happens for the first couple of months after that accident.  In the Blink of An Eye by Jesse Blackadder is just such a book.  The book is listed as fiction, however in the author’s afterword, it is revealed that the author underwent a similar experience when she was young.  The setting of the book is in New South Wales, a tropical land.  The place a wonderful bright purple and red home with a swimming pool and a separate shop.

The blurb talks about forgiveness and redemption of a family.  For me, all I felt was the angst of the family, the wretchedness and horror.  No where in the blurb anywhere was the tragedy named, so I will not give it away here.  Suffice to say, that some people were determined to make the family an example of neglect.  The father willing to shoulder the blame, the mother determined to blame everyone and a son left to figure out how to be an adult in the midst of tragedy.

I was not able to put the book down.  I felt I needed to read the book and feel the pain of the characters.  I felt I was standing, showing support by continuing to read.  I was so hoping for some magical ending or some surprising happening.  So, here is the hard part,  I did not like this book.  I hated the tragedy and I hated how people felt they need to make ‘an example’ of a tragedy to change rules and laws.  I didn’t like all the angst and I especially did not like how the teenager was forgotten in the midst of everything. In the Blink of An Eye reminds us of the fragility of life and love.
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This book was emotionally charged with scenes that would cause most parents to hold their children a little tighter and watch them a little closer.  Anyone caring for a child knows how much trouble  toddlers can get in if they get out of  sight for just few minutes, but imagining how horribly devastating it would be to have your child die because of such short lapse is unbearable. 

The author captured the characters emotions so vividly, I couldn’t help but feel much of this is how a tragedy would play out in real life.  This is definitely a gripping, 5 star book.
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This was a gut-wrenching, emotional novel that follows a family’s grief after a tragic accident.  It’s told from three different perspectives with one being first person (Jarrah), one in second person (Bridget), one in third person (Finn).  I’m not a huge fan of reading in second person, but I also feel that Bridget was the least likeable character so maybe reading her story in second person was meant to make her a little more likeable.  I liked that it shows everyone grieves in different ways and there is not only one proper way to grieve.

3.5 stars rounded up to 4. The author does a great job of making you feel the emotions of each character.  

Thank you, St. Martin’s Press, for the invitation to read this title through Netgalley.
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Finn & Bridget Brennanand their two sons, Jarrah and Toby have recently moved to  Murwillumbah, New South Wales.  Everyone is still getting adjusted to new schedules and places, not yet had the opportunity to make any close friends.  Then tragedy strikes in the blink of an eye, and their youngest son Toby is found dead in their pool.
What follows is blame... blaming each other, blaming themselves, not really knowing who or what is to blame.

This book was so sad.  I really felt for Finn, Bridget and Jarrah,  It was hard to read, but so worth it.
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In the Blink of an Eye was an interesting book. I'm not going to summarize it; there are reviews aplenty that will do that for you. I'm just going to tell you what worked for me and what didn't.
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First, the good stuff. Now, this took a minute (or ten) to get used to, but once I adjusted I really liked it: the perspective of the speaker switches depending on who was speaking. First person ("I did this, I went here," etc) was Jarrah, the teenaged son. Second person ("you" (meaning yourself) "went here; you did that") was Bridget, the matriarch of the story. And that leaves Finn, the husband/father of the story, in third person ("he did this, he said that"). Now, for me this worked on two levels. One, it made it so that no matter who was speaking, you could tell just by that detail alone who was speaking. That was fantastic for those of us (or maybe it's just me?) whose eyes are sometimes faster than their brain so they don't always catch who's speaking. It also worked on the level that in each voice you still had access to both actions and thoughts without even noticing sometimes that you did. That must have taken forever to get right and I applaud the author for taking it on.
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Now for the bad. I didn't think of it as that bad, because I still liked the book, but I feel I didn't fully connect with Bridget. Her obsession with the pool was too much for me (I'm trying really hard to convey meaningful information without spoilers, which is no easy feat here, by the way). If I were in her shoes, I would not have done any of what she did. And that's all I'll say about that. However, I did think Jarrah was written convincingly. And I also really liked his character, which is not always the case with teenage boys.
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All in all, I give this a 3.5, rounded up to 4 because I really did like the different perspectives.
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Thank you to NetGalley, Jesse Blackadder, and St. Martin's Press for the early review copy.
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Masterpiece of fascinating writing and storytelling. Enthralling and captivating.

This is a family drama that explores, through 3 view points (the mother, father and son) how the painful and hard walk to forgiveness after a tragedy can be extraordinary. This book a fast paced thrilling read and I finished it in two days. I was very invested in each character and enjoyed the writing style of Author Jesse Blackadder.

I would recommend this novel to anyone who loves a good family drama, superb writing and fast paced reading. I give this 4 stars.

Thank you to Net Galley and St. Martin’s Press for an advanced copy in exchange for my honest review.
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Talk about an emotional read! I love a good family drama book and this one set the bar. We see a family have moved to a new town when suddenly tragedy strikes and now the questions start to mount. What really happened? Who is to blame? I loved this book from start to finish and was pulled in from the very start. A great read with compelling characters and a great storyline!
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Impressively beautifully written but golly it's sad and it doesn't get lighter.  Finn, Bridget, Jarrah, and Toby are living the good life in New South Wales in their lovely house with a pool and a studio for Finn to make his art.  Just as things are about to take off for Finn, Toby wanders away while Bridget is in charge of him and ends up drowned in the pool, despite the unique security system they have for the fence.  The impact of Toby's death is huge, as Finn, Bridget, and Jarrah all become unmoored.  It's told from all three viewpoints but Jarrah's resonates the most, perhaps because he was already struggling as a teen.  Finn takes the blame for the accident and then is charged with manslaughter by criminal negligence but was he responsible?  This isn't about that and it's not about the trial (which is almost a throwaway), it's about a family in grief. There are some nice touches, such as Tom's comments, but I have to admit that I almost gave up on this because it was so unrelentingly sad.  I'm glad I didn't.  Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC.
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In my opinion this was twaddle and a waste of my time. Still if you like James Patterson or Danielle Steele this might be right up your alley.  It might have been been a better book if the parents were likable in any manner but the only character I had any empathy for is the teen-age son, Jarrah, who gets no support of any kind after a tragedy occurs in the family.

  The story starts out creepily with the mother wondering if her 15 year old son is getting too old to swim naked with his parents. You think? There is a 2 year old toddler who wanders around saying things like "Weed" for read which I am sure the author thinks is adorable but the reader finds annoying the hundredth time it's read.

 The mother, Bridget, is the principle bread winner who has no clue what her children do or eat or spend their time. She is really into herself and her office flirtation. The kids are left to the care of their very passive father, Finn, who is a sculptor. They have just moved to New South Wales from Tasmania after Finn has an affair with a family friend. Although the affair never progresses past the kissing stage, Bridget decides the entire family must relocate away from Finn's family and aging father.

  The story throws in a little bit of "hot button" topics including an aged parent's dementia and homosexuality. Couple that with both parents lukewarm affairs and you have a book that is apparently relevant. It's too bad the characters are so unpleasant (besides the son) that I never connected with the story. The author says it's based on the real life story of her sister's death at a young age. Perhaps that's why the teen-age character is so well written while the parents are so lacking. I recommend you read almost anything else.

Thanks to NetGalley for a copy of the ARC in exchange for a fair review.
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Finn, Bridget and their son Jarrah narrate this heart wrenching story in turn and I was glad to receive this story from three different points of view.  This review will be on the short side because thankfully there isn't a spoiler in the jacket copy and I don't want to spoil either.

This family endures a major tragedy and as these three narrate how each react to the tragedy and how they possibly recover was quite a story.  The tragedy made me cry and also made me think about how we each take blame for big and small things and how we are a part of a bigger picture.  

The thing that made me not love this book as much was all of the cheating and lies.  I try to avoid books with betrayals by spouses because it is just something I don't like to read, call me naive but I don't enjoy reading about it and it isn't healthy for me, so I didn't love that there was so much in this book and I didn't feel like half of it added to the story.  

When you get down to it though, this book was about the family and how they disbanded and the regrouped and the ups and downs of it all.  I enjoyed it, but it wasn't one of my favorites.
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