Cover Image: Heirlooms


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Member Reviews

I didn’t know what to expect from Heirlooms going in, but I certainly didn’t expect such a beautiful story spanning over 3 generations of women! I don’t want to spoil too much, but wow, this is such a wonderful book that I’ll want to purchase when I can get a physical copy. 

If you like books about true friendships and what it means to be family, with a little bit of cooking, gardening, romance, faith, and even secrets thrown in, you will enjoy this book.
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A touching, gentle story with a focus on friendships and family connections both past and present. This well written book is full of  lovely landscape descriptions and garden references that illustrate life lessons. The main characters deal with difficult situations and decisions that has them leaning on each other and their faith. There are tough topics handled gently here, like prejudice, stigmas, and cultural differences. The author has included her thoughtful research notes at the end adding a personal connection to the setting. I loved reading a story set in a place near where I live and have visited. Whidbey Island is a beautiful place with an interesting history. 

Recommend to readers who enjoy character driven stories punctuated with faith and hope. 4.5 stars
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This was my first multi-period novel. I was a little wary after hearing other readers say they always prefer one story over the other. But I’m happy to say that wasn’t the case with this reader. The author did a fantastic job connecting the two timelines through loss, hobbies, and secrets.
Heirlooms by Sandra Byrd is like unwrapping a  basket of goodies. She immerses the reader in the story’s setting by weaving tidbits from real life into her fictional tale, making the character’s world come alive. Remember party lines? By the end of the book, the reader has made new friends and collected a treasure trove of gardening and culinary ideas they can use in their own lives.
I love that Byrd’s characters are always strong and can find a solid solution to their problems. The mid-century story of two widows is a story of triumph and heartbreak. I love the way Helen helped Euhnee even though she knew it could cost her everything. Their friendship is a beautiful reminder of how precious true friends are. The modern-day story of Cassidy and Grace is about overcoming the odds and facing the truth of the past. All four women were relatable and likable.
5 stars
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An interesting dual time story that follows the friendships of Helen and Euhnee, grandmothers to Cassidy and Grace.
The historical story takes place in 1958 on the small island of Whidbey where there’s a Naval hospital. Both Helen and Euhnee are navy widows, who forge a friendship out of necessity and survival. Helen welcomes Euhnee, a Korean national who married an American, to her farm. The women develop an interesting friendship through their work in Helen’s garden. 
Cassidy is grieving her grandmother’s death and invites her best friend Grace to stay at her grandmother’s farm with her. Cassidy has plans to return to Seattle, but as she sorts through her grandmother’s things, she realizes what she’s been missing in her life back in Seattle. Cassidy and Grace have been best friends for years, but the summer they spend together at her grandmother’s farm is one that will forge new bonds and create a new dynamic in their friendship.
This story exposes the treatment of immigrants, children with down syndrome, and the deplorable condition/medical care in institutions. It’s a novel of friendship, family, and helping the helpless. When a family secret is exposed in the contemporary story, it serves as a catalyst for one character to discover her passion.
Vivid descriptions bring the readers into Cassidy’s world of flowers and their meanings. The easy narrative brings Helen’s work as a nurse to life, and readers can’t help but to want to see sweet Euhnee find relief from sorrow.
I received an ecopy from the publisher through NetGalley. All opinions expressed are my own.
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Heirlooms will take you back to mid-century Whidbey Island, Washington. The split time storylines are about four women, past and present.

My favorite character was Helen Devries, a navy widow in the 1950s. I like the way her faith grew during a trying time while helping a new friend with her own troubles.

The present-day character, Cassidy, was likeable but occasionally got on my nerves. While I love gardening, I thought there was a little too much detail regarding the outside world around the house. 

Sandra Byrd is a wonderful writer, and I’ve enjoyed all of her books through the years. This story brought me to tears several times. It is a bitter-sweet story of friendship, love and loss with a great ending.

Note: I received a complimentary copy of Heirlooms to review.

Another great read by Sandra Byrd!
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I loved many things about this book - the setting, the storyline, the food and cooking, gardening, the Asian culture, friendship between Caucasian and Asian, and the importance of family. But the writing style was just not my favorite. There was a lot of "she said", "he said." I also found myself rather disoriented not knowing exactly how the younger protagonists were related to the older ones. Readers who don't mind the slower pace of things might enjoy it. It was just not for me.
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Heirlooms by Sandra Bird is a beautiful split-time novel focused on the lives and relationships of four remarkable women. In the 1950's army widows Helen and Choi Eunhee develop a lifelong friendship, and in the present day, their granddaughters, in turn, become best friends.

I was quickly engaged by both in-depth storylines, which moved from one to the other slowly enough that there was no issue with getting lost between the two. 

There is much to be loved in this story! One aspect that greatly appealed to me was the previous Victory garden on Whidbey Island that Helen slowly brings to life. Cassidy, years later, revives her Grandmother's garden with heirloom cuttings in an attempt to establish herself as a master gardener, earn a living and provide a place for the less able to be productive.

Significant themes in this story include women's friendships, family ties, the ill-treatment of immigrants and people with developmental disabilities, and workplace sexual harassment.

I am happy to recommend this novel to those who love Christian fiction focused on women's lives and their relationships with each other. My thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for an ARC for this honest review.
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This wonderful book takes place in the 1950s and in current times but does not jump back and forth rapidly. The reader spends prolonged periods of time with the characters in one era before moving on to the next, which makes for easy reading. Even though the author does not explicitly tell the full back stories, there’s enough information to be able to infer what has happened. Characters are well developed, authentic and likable. The romance part definitely takes a backseat to the rest of the story, there is so much more to this book than initially meets the eye. The novel continues to surprise, just when you think the story is about to wind down, it takes a turn the reader does not see coming. The author introduces a number of different themes in the novel. Not wanting to provide anyone with spoilers, let me just mention that one has to do with cultural differences. Another one is about struggling with and advocating for being “different”. She treats all with knowledge and respect. I don’t often use the term “multi-layered” but it is an appropriate description in this case. All the events are intertwined and take a long time to unpack, but that’s part of the fun!. The book is inspiring, it challenges the reader to make a difference. Overall, the set-up of the novel makes for interesting reading with a very satisfying end. I’d highly recommend setting aside time to read this well-written book.
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In HEIRLOOMS, SANDRA BYRD tells the story of army widows Helen Devries and Choi Eunhee and their granddaughters Cassidy Quinn and Grace Kim. It is a beautifully written novel which will really touch your heart. 
The story starts with Helen Devries taking Choi Eunhee into her home. The two become lifelong friends, just as their granddaughters do many years later. 
The discovery of Helen’s hope chest and the secret that it contains has a huge impact on Cassidy and Grace’s lives, leading them to better understand their grandmothers’ heartaches and pleasures and to cherish the heirlooms passed down to them. Just as a Korean woman would add a little something to a dish passed down to her, giving the dish  “the taste of her hands”,  so they will add to their grandmothers’ legacy of courage and unconditional love, building on it and making it their own.
Just as there is a cooking theme, there is also a lovely gardening theme. 
Family, friendship, reconciliation and the idea of an inclusive community where people of all ages, nationalities and abilities are part of that “family”, together with a strong Christian message, produce a most enjoyable and inspirational read.
Heirlooms is altogether a lovely book with its unforgettable characters and bittersweet story.
I was given a free copy of the book by NetGalley from Tyndale House Publishers. The opinions in this review are completely my own.
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This was my first book by Sandra Byrd and it will not be my last. I am already searching for my next read. I loved the two story-lines, two time-lines and two sets of best friends. This story had so much depth to it, I felt like I was reading two separate life stories. This was so well written I never once got lost or confused. These strong ladies faced many problems and heart aches, but Ms. Byrd has a special talent for bringing light into the darkness. I loved the thread of faith that was woven throughout the novel.
I wish to thank Tyndale House along with NetGalley for allowing me to read and review this book. The opinions of this review are my own.
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I just finished reading Heirlooms by Sandra Byrd. I have not read a book in a long time that resonated with me on such a heart level…this book captured me on a deep emotional level and in many ways parallels my own life experiences. Heirlooms is a book rooted in faith, family, traditions, and love. The story of Helen and Eunhee began as an act of kindness from one woman to another but had far reaching consequences.  The friendship they developed touched not only their own lives, but the lives of their daughters and granddaughters as well as their community. A secret held for many years and finally revealed became the catalyst for wonderful things to happen. A garden nurtured and brought back to life by Helen and Eunhee became a lifeline for Helen’s granddaughter, Cassidy. The traditions we pass down from generation to generation tie us to those who came before us and those who come after. I cannot recommend Heirlooms highly enough if you are looking for a wonderful and heartwarming book to read.
I received a copy of Heirlooms from the publisher through NetGalley.
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A story about friendship and family and particularly the bonds formed between two women in similar circumstances but with very different takes on life. 
The friendship they created is subsequently continued by their granddaughters and the secrets the young girls discover bring about their happy, fulfilling ending and a happy ending to their community. 
There is great sadness in this book but also great joy.
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On a scale of cotton candy to Brussels sprouts, Heirlooms by Sandra Byrd is an Apple Salad with Mustard Dressing. Apples were picked from the old tree in the backyard, and the salad greens grew in the neighbor's vegetable garden. 

Cassidy Quinn returns to the place that always felt the most like home when her grandmother dies, and she discovers that she's inherited the old farmhouse and land...and all its secrets. Together, with her childhood friend Grace Kim, they discover a past and secret that they didn't know their grandmothers had locked into the hope chest years ago. As both young women try to determine their futures, they look to the past for answers.

What a slow-burn novel. From page one, I was interested in the mystery that Cassidy and Grace had discovered, but it was the story of their grandmothers that gripped me (so I was grateful for the time split so I could head back in time). I trust Sandra Byrd and her writing so while there were parts that felt slow, I stuck with Heirlooms, seeking that satisfying pay-off, and Sandra Byrd delivered.

TW: a baby's death
I do want to note that this story included the loss of a child, and for me, that was a harrowing portion of the story that I was not prepared to meet. And I can only think that other readers may want the heads up that this story includes this specific grief.

If you enjoy a family dynamics story with a split time between post-WWII and modern-day, then you will enjoy Heirlooms by Sandra Byrd.
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This is a beautiful story of two grandmothers and their two granddaughters. It goes back and forth in time between the 1950s and the present, and although it is a "gentle" read, it does not shy away from some significant social issues: the unfair treatment of immigrants and people with developmental disabilities, and sexual harassment are just a few examples. The picturesque seaside setting on Whidbey Island, Washington adds to the appeal. I look forward to recommending this title.
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This is the first split-time book I’ve read, and I liked it. The stories intertwined seamlessly and the characters were relatable. I loved seeing the connections through different generations and how genuine friendship lives on. 
The setting was vibrant and I love the focus, descriptions, and respect of food and agriculture. I could envision the garden and their love for it. 

Heirlooms is a charming story featuring strong female characters of faith and pursuing hope despite challenging circumstances.
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As soon as I opened Sandra Byrd's Heirlooms, I entered as lovely a story of intergenerational and cross-cultural friendships as any I've read. Two Navy widows—one of Korean lineage—find solace in each other after their husbands' deaths. Estranged from their mothers, the two become family-of-heart with the birth of one's Down syndrome child. Those women have passed when their granddaughters follow attic clues to sleuth the details of their shared histories—and honor the legacies of their remarkable grandmothers. 
The story takes place on Washington State's Whidbey Island, in a countryside that nourished me in literal and figurative gardens of hope. This story is so rich and warm-hearted, you'll be weeping by its conclusion. 

I was.

(Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for an advance copy, with no expectations of a favorable review.)
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This was an amazing book with such encouraging encounters with a variety of people.  Inspiration to find where God's leading your heart and follow his calling for you.
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Sandra’s ability to draw you in begins on page one and stays with you long after you’ve finished reading.  There are a few parallels in my own life in this book, and that might be why I loved it so much. The story line is exquisite and seamless even though it spans two different time periods and the lives of four women.  All of them are finding joy and healing through learning to garden - as am I! And, like me, each one of them is starting new lives.  I found it encouraging to watch these characters struggle with making the right choice and using their voices for the good of others.  I learned new things that I did not know before about Korean culture, Autism, and Down syndrome.  The way she describes the area made me feel like I was truly on Whidbey Island rather than at my own home.  All in all this was an excellent read! I recommend this book to women who enjoy a good, wholesome story line.  If you like to garden or cook, this book has many references to both that will delight you!
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I received a copy of Heirlooms by Sandra Byrd through Netgalley. This is an incredibly beautiful novel - both in content and in the phraseology. I was moved to tears. It is a gorgeous story of second chances, finding oneself, integrity, love, and redemption. The setting, characters, and writing are satisfying and rich. Everything blends together in such an amazingly orchestrated way - the time period, the cultures, and the ethical dilemmas. I read the book slowly on purpose because I didn't want it to end and I wanted to savour it. It is uplifting and yet down to earth and not stifling. The book is written with humanity, love, and warmth
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I adored this sweeping story spanning generations of families, some born of blood, some of mutual need that become precious lifelong ties. Treasures and secrets passed down change the course of lives. If you like stories full of heart and substance, this fits the bill. You'll delight in the characters and their interwoven stories, in the small town that comes together to save a business that is as much about family and community as making a
Iiving. Sandra Byrd is a master at telling a story that is sure to be a fan favorite and as sure to remain in readers' hearts for a long time. I received a copy of this book from Netgalley with no expectations of a positive review. These are my own thoughts and opinions.
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