Thursday 1 July 2010

Review: Cold Rock River - Jackie Lee Miles

Genre: Fiction
Pages: 368
Published: July 1st 2010

Seventeen-year-old Adie Jenkins is newly married and newly pregnant, though not necessarily in that order. Unready for fatherhood, her skirt-chasing husband isn't much help. But in this stunning tale that redefines intimacy, love, and family, Adie discovers hope where she least expects it: from her sweet neighbor Murphy, from the world-wise midwife Willa Mae, and in the worn pages of the diary of a slave girl-a girl who is much closer to Adie than she thinks.

This was a heartbreaking tale at times, neither of the women in this book had it easy. First there is Adie Jenkins, who gets pregnant and marries at 17. But her husband does not leave his wild ways and she is pretty much left to fend for herself most of the time. But she find friendship in her neighbours and one of them, Willa Mae reads from a book. Another heartbreaking tale about a young slave girl who lost her children.

The books tells much of Adie's family history and how things happened like they did. Like the loss of her little sister that broke the family in half. Her sisters exploits, and how her other sister started to eat, and eat. And of course her own mistake. But Adie was strong, she would not give up, not even when it looked dark at one time and my heart was in my throat because of he injustice she suffered. But friends, family and that diary helped her along, and she never gave up. The road to happiness is not an easy one.

Then there is the diary, I did have problems at first, because of the way it looked, but I got used to it. Of course then there was the other problem of understanding, I had this sometimes in the book too cos of their southern accent.. But I got used to it, I have obviously spent too little time in the south. To the diary, a woman called Tempe is telling her life story. How she grew up on a plantation, how she got used and pushed around, how the war came, and ended and how she set out on a long journey. She had it bad at times, and she still had hope. It was a fascinating story, and it took turns I did not see coming. And at other times I was shaken by the cruelty of their masters. 

I enjoyed the friendship she formed with Willa Mae, this very old midwife who helps her along, and her next door neighbour Murphy who helps her when she needs it. But he also lets her be independent. 

Friendship and hope was the best part of this book because it showed the way. The agony of not knowing what was coming next at a certain time in the book made me want to stop reading, but at the same time read on to find out, and wish for the best.

I liked how she wove two stories together, about two entirely different women, but who at the same time were very much alike.

A tale of the south in the 60's, friendship, loss, love, finding your own way, and a look back at how slaves were treated 100 years before. A different world.

Blodeuedd's Cover Corner: Very nice, I am sure they would have been friends if they had met.
Reason for reading: Copy from the publisher
Final thoughts: I liked this look at the south of the US, I seldom find myself reading about it.



  1. Wonderful review, B! I think Cold Rock River sounds like a great book.

  2. A great review! This sounds like a wonderful read. I like these "real-life" stories. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Sounds like an interesting book. Nice review!

  4. Seems a little sad for me, and I don't tend to read "friendship books. Glad you enjoyed it, though.

  5. Great review, this does sound really good. It sounds very interesting.

  6. I don't think this book is for me..but it sounds nice :)

  7. Ladybug,
    It was a wonderful book.

    I'ts pretty nice to read these kinds of books too, especially after having read a lot of not so real book.

    Waves to Chris

    Thanks Mary!

    Well at one point it was sad, but mostly angry sad, not sad sad. As for friendship, it was mostly about Adie anyway

  8. Naida
    It sure was

    Thanks Yvonne

    All can't fall to your taste :D

  9. Yeah, friendship and hope are good companions in life. :) Wonderful review!

  10. Janna
    So true, I certainly need friendship, not to mention hope :)

  11. Friendship you have, sweetie, at least a lot of virtual friendships. :)

  12. I kind of skimmed your review for now to see if you liked this one as I'm reading it for the end of the month. It sounds like you liked it so that's a good thing.

  13. Janna
    And those are sure amazing :)

    I did, it was nice to read about some real lives, even if those lives were sad, but at the same time, yes tat hope I was talking about

  14. "I liked how she wove two stories together, about two entirely different women, but who at the same time were very much alike." <---Love it when authors do that and it works.

  15. I'm glad you liked this one. I read it when it was first published and loved the writing.

  16. patti,
    I do love that too, and it's just so great when it actually works

    I saw that is was a 2nd ed :) Glad to hear you liked it the first time around



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