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The Blackout Book Club

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Member Reviews

I was so intrigued by the plot of this book. A Bookclub during wartime sounds like a great scenario for a gripping story. I just struggled to really get into the plot and the four Points of View was really hard to keep up with for me. I felt the heaviness of the war and the more serious tone of the book really detracted from my enjoyment and I really just did not connect with the characters the way I had hoped. It was obvious the author did a lot of research of wartime home front circumstances and I felt that it gave the book authenticity, however it was a lot of info to process at times. I’m sure this book will be on many favorite reads lists, I just struggle with multiple pov’s personally, so it wasn’t the book for me.

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Reminiscent of The Guernesy Potato Peel and Literary Society , the Blackout Book Club is a love letter to the written word and its power to bring people together and give them hope in the darkest of times.

For I have found that books make fine friends - but fellow readers even better.

The story follows four women, and sometimes it was hard to keep track of all their back stories. There were also very few Christian elements for a book labeled Christian fiction.

Overall, though, the characters were well drawn, the plot was compelling, and the setting was evocative. I loved learning pieces of history otherwise unknown to me surrounding WWII on the homefront. And the literary references and library love can't be beat.

Poetry is anarchy, and I still don't like it.

Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC!

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This is a hard review for me to write because I really enjoyed, and recommended, Amy Lynn Green‘s first two stories so I was really looking forward to this one. I mean the title alone had my interest. Sadly, I just could not get into the story. I feel like there were way too many points of view and it became somewhat confusing. I also struggled liking any of the characters. I mean when Avis started mentally giving her husband demerits for being late, I seriously struggled to keep reading. While this is a miss for me, I’m sure many others will love it as much as they loved her first two stories. I received a complimentary copy of this book. All opinions are my own.

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Amy Lynn Green has written a World War II era novel that tackles the nitty gritty of life on the home front.

Russell is depressed because he cannot serve, until he finds an "unofficial" mode of service that will take him away from home for three months at a time. Avis is not happy about that situation, nor of the circumstances surrounding her job at the library. Since the library is not public but is a subscription library, the owner, Louise Cavendish, can close it down or do as she wishes with it. Avis proposes a book club as a way to keep it open and running.

Louise is an embittered woman who has been dealt a harsh hand by life. Her father was somewhat of a dictator until he died, but he ultimately had her best interests at heart. She became just as dictatorial in her dealings in the library.

Freddy works for Louise as her gardener, but he has an ulterior motive for seeking her out. He has been sidelined from the war due to an injury while flying missions in Europe.

Ginny's family lost their home due to Eminent Domain and Ginny has come to town to work and earn money to purchase it back after the war.

Martina and her two children are hiding out, to a degree, from Martina's abusive husband. At the same time, Martina is working to provide for her children.

These are the major players in this novel that makes reading an artform and elevates it to a level I've rarely encountered. This is not a book to be read quickly, but it needs to be taken in smaller doses and digested. I've met characters like Louise who are seemingly intractable in their ideas and actions, but have deeper emotions hiding beneath the surface that truly explain all of their feelings and motivations. Amy Lynn has done a masterful job of providing Louise's backstory so that she's not entirely unsympathetic as a character.

The other characters all have hopes and desires that reveal their personalities and make them more fully fleshed out.

Derby, Maine, is a fictional town on the Atlantic Coast. While there isn't much in the way of description of the town, the townspeople and atmosphere of the town make it feel rather homey.

This is a five star book with two thumbs up and a classic book to read for your book club.

Bethany House Publishing provided the copy I read for this review. All opinions expressed are solely my own.

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THE BLACKOUT BOOK CLUB by AMY LYNN GREEN is a well crafted story that starts in the small town of Derby Maine in 1942. It is a story about books and their influence, friendship and relationships.
When Avis Montgomery’s brother Anthony joins the army and is sent to Europe, he asks his sister to take his place as librarian at the Cavendish Association Library. When the owner of the library, the rather unapproachable Miss Louise Cavendish, decides to close the library and turn the building into a nursery school for the children of mothers who are working for the war effort, Avis blurts out that she has started a book club, hoping to keep the library open. The Blackout Book Club becomes a safe place to meet in these troubled times. “After all, everyone had a past - and most hid at least a few secrets,” which could make things more interesting as they compare real life with what they read. As Louise Cavendish, who is trying to destroy her father’s legacy, finds out, one’s past will never stay buried.
The members of the book club are a motley assortment of people, all facing personal challenges, who are drawn together by the books they read and discuss, and we find that “the people who now had stories and opinions attached to them instead of being merely names ” all contribute in some way to the group. I really enjoy the notes taken at the book club meetings and how the members become more real with one another and lasting friendships are formed.
I found the book most entertaining as well as thought provoking, and highly recommend it, especially to anyone who loves reading.
I was given a free copy of the book by NetGalley from Bethany House Publishers. The opinions in this review are completely my own.

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Full of history and literature, touching friendships and family bonding, rich in themes and deep in meaning, The Blackout Book Club is an incredible book. It’s hard to write longer reviews for five-star books because to me, the book says it all—so let that be your invitation to dive into its pages.

Amy Lynn Green—you’ve done it again: another masterpiece. Well done.

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The Blackout Book Club is now my new favorite written by Amy Lynn Green. I loved every single page and it deserves five stars.

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I loved the premise and knew I had to read it. I really liked these storylines and how they all intertwined.
I liked Avis and she started a book club to save the library. Her relationship with her husband is strained in parts of the novel, but we really see how war is affecting both of them and their relationships.
I also liked Miss Cavendish and her involvement with the library. In the beginning you kind of view her as a grumpy old lady but we learn more about her throughout.
Louise is trying to do her civic duty and run a lot of things. But we learn more about her through the book club and see a bit of her softer side.
Ginny is adjusting to a lot of changes. And really just trying to fit in. I adored her efforts and her friendliness.
Martina we learn more about her and her past a long the way.
All of these characters were woven together wonderfully. We learn about them and how the war is changing them but also how having different relationships and friendships that they never expected can change their lives.
A great novel to read in a book club as there is much to discuss!

Thanks NetGalley and the publisher for this ARC!

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