Cover Image: War Clouds Over Blackberry Farm

War Clouds Over Blackberry Farm

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Member Reviews

I love Rosie's books and War Clouds Over Blackberry Farm is no exception.  Her attention to detail is exceptional; the women are strong, capable ladies who know what they want from life.  I loved how Harpers was incorporated into the novel!  I do hope that this is the first in a new series.
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What a way to start a New series.  This author is my favorite historical fiction series author. I fell in love with all of the characters. Seriously i could feel their pain when they were hurting. I laughed with them when something good happened to them. Bring on the next book in the series. Thank you to netgalley for letting me read This e arc in exchange for an honest opinion
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I have been a fan of Rosie’s work for a while now.  I haven’t quite caught up with everything that she has written but I am getting there.  When I heard that Rosie had started to write a new saga series, I knew I had to read the first book as soon as possible.  Well ladies and gents the wait is over as ‘War Clouds Over Blackberry Farm’ was released on 4th November 2021.  I absolutely loved reading ‘War Clouds Over Blackberry Farm’ but more about that in a bit.
I absolutely loved the characters of Lizzie Johnson and Tom Talbot.  Both live in the same village and they are in a relationship.  Everybody expects them to marry and it’s just a case of ‘when’ and not ‘if’.  However as often is the case, life throws Lizzie and Tom a curveball and life as they know it will not be the same again.  I won’t go too far into what happens other than to say it’s a serious matter.  Lizzie flees to London and Tom throws himself into his work.  Tom has a hot temper and has been known to fly off the handle when provoked.  Lizzie and Tom are perfectly suited as a couple and I kept everything crossed and hoped that they would work out their various issues and that they would both find the ‘happy ever after’ ending that both so deserved.  What happens?  Well to find out you are just going to have to read the book for yourselves to find out as I am not going to tell you.
As with all of Rosie’s books I was drawn into this story from the synopsis alone and the story between the book’s covers just sealed the deal as it were.  I instinctively knew that I would become addicted to this story and that I wouldn’t be able to put the book down for any length of time.  I was right on both counts.  To say that reading ‘War Clouds Over Blackberry Farm’ became addictive is like saying that I like cake- in other words a massive understatement.  My Kindle wasn’t exactly glued to my hand but it might as well have been because it travelled everywhere with me.  I just couldn’t bear to miss a single second of the story.  This was one of those books that was constantly on my mind – if I wasn’t reading about the story then I was thinking about it, if I had to put the book down then I would immediately look forward to being able to pick the book up again.  I found ‘War Clouds Over Blackberry Farm’ to be an emotional and gripping read, which kept me guessing and which kept me on the edge of my seat.
‘War Clouds Over Blackberry Farm’ is superbly written but then I think that all of Rosie’s books are superbly written.  Rosie has one of those easy going writing styles that is easy to get used to and easy to get along with.  In fact, reading one of Rosie’s books feels more like a chat between friends than reading an actual book.  I hope that makes sense.  For me, the story hits the ground running and maintains a fairly fast pace throughout.   Rosie clearly cares about her characters and this shines through in her writing and the way in which she describes the characters.  Rosie does a huge amount of historical research and this makes the story teem that bit more authentic.  I love the way in which Rosie makes the reader feel as though they are part of the story and at the heart of the action.  
In short, I thoroughly enjoyed reading ‘War Clouds Over Blackberry Farm’ and I would recommend this book to other readers.  I will certainly be reading more of Rosie’s work in the future.  The score on the Ginger Book Geek board is a very well deserved 5* out of 5*.
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I have been a fan of Rosie Clarke's for a long time now and was very excited to see that she had started another series of books. I am in awe of how hard this author must work - she's constantly releasing something and her books never disappoint!
This is yet another that I loved and can't wait for the next in the series. 
Seriously, if you've never read any  of Rosie's books before, I highly recommend them - she's such a good author who has just the right amount of romance, drama and intrigue to get you hooked from the beginning!
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Having read some.of Rosie's other books this one did not disappoint either, i absolutely loved the characters in the story and the how the story was brought to life on the pages, i actually read this whole book in an afternoon as i couldn't put it down, loved the story following Lizzie and Tom and thought Pam and Vera were wonderful as well
Cant wait for the next instalment of blackberry farm and  to catch up with all the lovely characters
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War Clouds Over Blackberry Farm by Rosie Clarke

Whilst reading this book, I found myself swept away back to the shadow of World War Two, captured by the events that unfolded for Pam and her loved ones. The characters are so well written, my heart went out to them. So much attention to detail, obviously a great deal of research went into the novel and I liked learning about this time period through the eyes of the characters. The writing makes you feel like you could be there in the room with them. I shared in their heartaches, worries and joys. In particular, I loved Rosie Clarke’s strong female characters. They are determined, kind-hearted and resilient. My favourite was Lizzie. I enjoyed reading about her career and her journey to find happiness in her love life. I felt the author portrayed life as it was back then, not glossing over difficult and emotive issues such as attitudes towards women and the heartbreak they had at watching loved ones go off to fight. 

Plenty going on in the plot as all the characters took different directions, yet it was seamlessly woven together. So many shocks. I wanted things to reach their conclusion, perhaps there will be a sequel with the outcome for the characters. Overall, I thought it was an historical family drama written from the heart. 4.5 stars. With thanks to Rachel’s Random Resources, Boldwood Books and Netgalley for this ARC I received in exchange for an honest review.
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War Clouds Over Blackberry Farm by Rosie Clarke is the beginning of another wartime family saga. It is 1939 and war is looming in the future but has not yet begun for the Talbot family on Blackberry Farm. It is a large family, with five children, mostly grown with Pam and Arthur at the head of it. There is Tom Gilbert, Arthur's stepson and then Artie, John, Susan, and Angie. Tome had a girlfriend, Lizzie Jackson, who lived on the property in a cottage owned by Arthur. Her father had died. There are all sorts of friends and acquaintances as well. This is a slice-of-life story, detailing the daily lives and loves of these people and their neighbors. Tom is strong and tough and a hard-worker. He loves Lizzie but is in no hurry to marry, although he knows they will one day. There is a town bully, Ralph Harris, who is jealous of Tom and causes him trouble whenever he can. Mostly Tom ignores him. Tom and Artie work the farm with their father supervising. He is still relatively young, but has some arthritis so they try to keep things easy for him. John has left the fold to work in construction and has become a master plasterer. It is a pleasant life for the Talbots, until Hitler invades Poland and England declares war. 

Clarke writes a compelling, yet simple story of life during WWII. This saga will take place in the country, mostly, rather than the city. Those folks had different concerns, although there are many crossovers. There is drama, but it is real-life drama, not contrived. There is war. People die and get injured. Other people take advantage. Clarke includes all of that. Yet, it is enjoyable and, for the most part, happy. The people are optimistic and joyful. Just as people really were. Until reading these books about the war (not the Holocaust), I never really realized how England and all of Europe was affected during and after the war. I thank Rosie Clarke for opening my eyes in a simple, yet effective way.  You will love this book!

I was invited to read a free e-ARC of War Clouds Over Blackberry Farm by Boldwood Books, through Netgalley. All thoughts and opinions are mine. #netgalley #boldwoodbooks #rosieclarke #warcloudsoverblackberryfarm
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Book Review “War Clouds over Blackberry Farm” by Rosie Clarke

War Clouds Over Blackberry Farm

Cambridgeshire – March 1939
As the clouds of war begin to gather in Europe, the Talbot family of rural Blackberry Farm will be torn apart, just as so many families all over the world will be. Life will never be the same again.
Whilst in London, the Salmons family will feel the pain of parting and loss.
Brought together by war, the two families become intertwined and, as the outlook looks bleak, they must draw on each other’s strength to fight through the hard times.
Lizzie Johnson and Tom were sweethearts until a mistake caused a terrible rift. Lizzie takes herself off to London to heal the pain in a glamorous new job but she still loves Tom. His pride has been hurt – but deep down inside Tom still cares. Can they find happiness before their chance is gone and the whole word is swept into the terrible madness of war?
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Rosie Clarke is a brand new author to me. I pounced on War Clouds over Blackberry Farm because I really enjoy Historical war time books. This one did not let me down. A stunning read that gently rolls along in the Cambridgeshire countryside. I loved reading about an area that is close to me. The beautiful countryside and life on a farm skilfully brought to life with a huge level of reality. I grew up on a farm and Rosie gets the hard work that goes into farm life spot on.

Strong Matriarch characters, especially Tom’s mum add to this story immensely, she is the glue that keeps this family together. Her advice is readily given but never intruding. She’s always cooking something tasty, making sure the family and farm run smoothly. This was very reminiscent of my childhood. I smiled throughout these scenes.

This is a real war time family saga that captures the time period absolutely. I thoroughly enjoyed the switch between London and the countryside. The pace of life is described so well you can really picture inside the Salmons house, where Lizzie lodges, the difference in her rather gruff unforgiving mother and the loving family Lizzie finds herself with. The relationships are superbly written with joy and care. Tom and lizzie’s on, off relationship is so beautifully detailed that you can see right into their souls, the inner arguments they have, trying to make the best decisions, often without having the courage to talk to each and Lizzie’s inability to explain her dramatic flea to London. I just wanted them to get together and be happy.

Overall an impressive war story without too much war if that makes sense. It was more about the people and how they carried on with life no matter what. An enjoyable piece of escapism, which I wouldn’t normally say about a war based story but at times this book just takes you away to a beautiful farm setting, country life and all that goes with it. Joy, grief, arguments that seemingly run deep but overall love.

Author Bio –  Rosie Clarke is a #1 bestselling saga writer whose most recent books include The Shop Girls of Harpers and The Mulberry Lane series. She has written over 100 novels under different pseudonyms and is an RNA Award winner. She lives in Cambridgeshire.

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Many thanks to Netgalley and Boldwood Books for the arc. 
Having never read this authors books before, I was delighted to get the chance to review this one. 
This book draws you in from the first page and you can picture the setting of the farm perfectly. I forgot everything around me as I raced through the pages. What a promising start to a brand new series. I'll definitely be checking out more of this authors work.
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I love war time historical fiction and loved that this was set between the country and London as we meet Tom & Lizzie. Within the first few pages I loved Tom and his family and the dislike for Ralph was instant and continued to grow as I read.

After a massive misunderstanding you see Lizzie embark on her dream job in London whilst Tom is left wrestling with whether he did the right thing. Once again this story was full of strong characters and true matriarchs in the mothers we get to spend time with.

I loved the references to Harper's as I've loved reading that series and found that I flew through this book as war is declared and my attachment to the characters grew.

Another superb story by one of my favourite authors when it comes to historical fiction
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Wow, Rosie Clarke at her finest . What a fantastic book and hoping for future visits to blackberry farm.
Loved the characters and the twists written within the story of families in ww2 and the struggles of far life in that time with the added twists of relationships.
Fantastic read and eagerly await future instalments of this book
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would like to thank netgalley and the publisher for letting me read this book in a brand new series

a slow build up with some interesting characters but the storyline of a working farm during the war is fascinating 

and as the story progresses you start to see how the characters progress, some you like and some you dont...

will be interested to see how this series goes on
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I love British family sagas and I am always on the lookout for new series. Rosie Clarke is already a favorite of mine so I was so happy to see this debut. As usual, she does not disappoint. I won't rehash the plot or give away spoilers but this is a great book if you are drawn to character relationships and people struggling to get through hard times. If you have enjoyed Rosie's other series or are a fan of Diney Costeloe, Cathy Sharpe, or Daisy Styles you will like this book.
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Historical fiction is my favorite genre, WWII books especially.  I have read Rosie Clark before and knew when I requested this book I would be happy.  As usual, Ms. Clark gave us a comfortable and warm story even though it was war time.  These books about life in England at that time are my favorite.  My thanks to NetGalley for this ARC in exchange for an honest review.  I will be adding a review to my blog as well as Amazon.
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War Clouds Over Blackberry Farm is the beginning of Rosie Clarke’s new series.  We are taken back to March of 1939.  I love Ms. Clarke’s Mulberry Lane series, so I was eager to check out this new historical novel.  I found it a little slow in the beginning as we are introduced to the characters and their situations.  I soon found myself caught up in this engaging story.  I liked getting to know the Talbot family on Blackberry Farm as well as Lizzie and the other secondary characters.  I just loved Pam.  The author provided good descriptions of the people and the locale.  She captured the time period as well with books, movies, clothing, cars, current events, and the slang.  I liked the contrast between the city (with the Salmons) and the country (with the Talbots).  It was interesting to see how the author connected the two families (one in Cambridgeshire and one in London).  We get to see how the war affects the people in England.  The new regulations put in place was interesting especially for farmers.  Family and friendships are especially important during the war.  People became closer during this time period.  It was amazing how people helped each other.  Rosie Clarke created two wonderful families in this story.  I can always count on this author’s books to have good characters plus for her books to give you that warm, happy feelings.  There is some mild foul language in the book and one scene where a woman is attacked by a man she trusts (fair warning).  Readers who enjoy dramatic historical sagas, will be delighted with War Clouds Over Blackberry Farm.   War Clouds Over Blackberry Farm is an uplifting tale that has duplicity, love, war, hope, loss, friendships, and family.
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Rosie Clark’s sagas are so beautifully written they draw me right in.I sat down to read a few pages and could not put it down.I will be recommending this series and her other books.#netgalley #boldwoodbooks.
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I've read a few of Rosie Clarke's book so when I saw a brand new series from her I couldn't wait to read it. 

War is looming and the country is starting to prepare for war. The Talbot family live on a farm and are needed to help feed the nation. Lizzie Johnson and Tom Talbot are going steady but Lizzie feels the relationship is not going as fast as she hoped. A mistake causes her to flea to London. She finds work at an hairdressers and accommodation with the Salmons who become her much needed 'new' family. 

I really enjoyed this book and I am already impatiently waiting for the next book in the series. I love historical fiction books and this is up there with the best of them.
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I was sadly disappointed by this book.  I felt the storyline would have been strong enough with Lizzie, Tom and the farm without the need for the Ralph storyline. It turned from a nice family saga set around the war to include unneeded violence and hatred.  Fine that the two lads didn't get on and had a fight but leave it there - the London aspect of Ralph was unnecessary. 

From a 'naive' girl who gets involved with Ralph Lizzie soon seems to turn into a shrewd business woman earning high wages which didn't quite fit for me.  I also found it highly unlikely that Jeannie would get posted to Blackberry farm - the odds on winning the lottery must have been more likely! Mary again was an unneeded character.

I skim read probably the whole second half of the book.
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3 stars. I think I'm the anomaly review here in that I didn't love this book. If I'm entirely honest I was put off by the info dump right at the start of the first chapter, and then it never really redeemed itself from then on.

Many thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for the advanced copy in exchange for my review. My opinions are my own and not influenced by anyone. Ever.
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I love wartime saga's and i have always loved Rosie Clarke's books as she writes a story that draws you into the pages and you can't get enough.Loved this book Brilliant.5*
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