Book Review: Once in a Blue Moon – Eileen Goudge

Title: Once in a Blue Moon
Author: Eileen Goudge
ISBN: 9781593156145
Pages: 336
Release Date: October 6, 2009
Publisher: Vanguard Press
Genre: Women’s Fiction
Source: TLC Book Tours 
Rating: 4 out of 5

Summary:

Lindsay Margaret McAllister Bishop didn’t always have an easy life, but she has succeeded despite the odds.  When she was very young, her mother was sent to prison on drug charges.  Lindsay and her younger sister, Kerrie Ann, were separated and placed in foster homes.  Lindsay was lucky enough to be adopted by a loving couple and had a good upbringing.  Lindsay’s never forgotten about Kerrie Ann though.  When Kerrie Ann shows up on Lindsay’s doorstep out of the blue, Lindsay is both happy and shocked – after all Kerrie Ann wasn’t as lucky as Lindsay, and has turned out more like their mother.  When Kerrie Ann reveals that her daughter was taken away from her, Lindsay realizes she’s in over her head, as she has problems of her own to cope with.

Review:

I enjoy stories about sisters, and Once in a Blue Moon was no exception.  Goudge portrays the tension between these two women very well.  Lindsay is pragmatic and successful.  She realizes that she was lucky in her upbringing.  She has trouble with Kerrie Ann because she sees their irresponsible mother in her.  Kerrie Ann showed up on her doorstep expecting help and a place to stay, and Lindsay doesn’t know if she has the strength for that.  Kerrie Ann, on the other hand, feels that Lindsay is ashamed of her.  She wasn’t lucky enough to be adopted by a picture perfect family and has had to make it on her own.  She resents Lindsay for the luck she’s had, while realizing she is asking a lot of her.

I sympathized with both these women, though I have to admit Kerrie Ann drove me slightly nuts at the beginning of the book.  I could completely understand why she acted the way she did, especially considering what she’d been through, but I was with Lindsay all the way.  It made Kerrie Ann’s growth over the course of the novel that much more satisfying. 

The overarching story of the custody battle is gripping.  This isn’t a book where you can automatically assume Kerrie Ann will win back her daughter, especially considering the mistakes she’s made, and continues to make.  It was really heartwarming to see how these two sisters, despite their differences, band together in order to help one another. 

Once in a Blue Moon was an enjoyable women’s fiction novel.  I appreciated how realistic the characters were and how well Goudge portrayed their relationship.  This would make a great book club selection.

Comments

  1. I can see how this would make a good book club pick, but I’m not completely sure this is for me.

  2. I can see how this would make a good book club pick, but I’m not completely sure this is for me.

  3. It is hard to read about a person who is so self-destructive. The plot would definitely provoke a discussion on nature or nurture.

  4. It is hard to read about a person who is so self-destructive. The plot would definitely provoke a discussion on nature or nurture.

  5. Wow, that cover totally made me think this was a bodice-ripper! I think I’ve had my share of characters driving me slightly nuts lately but I can see where it would be gripping. I bet it would be a great book club read. Lots of discussion!

  6. Wow, that cover totally made me think this was a bodice-ripper! I think I’ve had my share of characters driving me slightly nuts lately but I can see where it would be gripping. I bet it would be a great book club read. Lots of discussion!

  7. I have loved other books by Goudge, and think that this one sounds great as well. I really like stories that deal with families, so the fact that this one is about sisters appeals to me. Great review! I will be on the lookout for this book!

  8. I have loved other books by Goudge, and think that this one sounds great as well. I really like stories that deal with families, so the fact that this one is about sisters appeals to me. Great review! I will be on the lookout for this book!

  9. i’m also a fan of sister-fiction and have one sib–a younger sister. i know what sister relationships are like and think this novel sounds like an interesting read. the cover threw me for a bit of a loop, though. i know authors don’t pick their covers, but maybe you can tell me if this cover represent the novel.

  10. i’m also a fan of sister-fiction and have one sib–a younger sister. i know what sister relationships are like and think this novel sounds like an interesting read. the cover threw me for a bit of a loop, though. i know authors don’t pick their covers, but maybe you can tell me if this cover represent the novel.

  11. I agree with the comments about the cover – I didn’t think it represented the book at all. Looks like a bodice ripper cover!

  12. I agree with the comments about the cover – I didn’t think it represented the book at all. Looks like a bodice ripper cover!

  13. Toough choices for sisters to make. Blood ties apart the upbringing has been so different it will be like two total strangers as well trying to get on.

  14. Toough choices for sisters to make. Blood ties apart the upbringing has been so different it will be like two total strangers as well trying to get on.

  15. I keep hearing such good things about this author. I really need to pick up one of her books and check it out. This one sounds good – great review!

  16. I keep hearing such good things about this author. I really need to pick up one of her books and check it out. This one sounds good – great review!

  17. I’m with Heather – the cover of that book doesn’t fit the description at all. I would have skipped right over it if I hadn’t read your review.

  18. I’m with Heather – the cover of that book doesn’t fit the description at all. I would have skipped right over it if I hadn’t read your review.

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  21. This sounds like a good story about siblings. I agree with the cover it does looks like a bodice ripper. I wish covers were more influenced on the story. I would love to see how they choose covers for books…

  22. This sounds like a good story about siblings. I agree with the cover it does looks like a bodice ripper. I wish covers were more influenced on the story. I would love to see how they choose covers for books…

  23. I’m sorry to be so late in getting over here to comment but I wanted to thank you for an excellent review and for being on the tour!

    And I totally agree with your commenters about the cover.. it doesn’t match!

  24. I’m sorry to be so late in getting over here to comment but I wanted to thank you for an excellent review and for being on the tour!

    And I totally agree with your commenters about the cover.. it doesn’t match!

  25. As always, great review! I completely agree. And I too don’t understand the cover at all. I usually love Goudge’s covers and titles (the double meaning of Immediate Family and the fun cover with a proper tie in is the best example that comes to mind)

  26. As always, great review! I completely agree. And I too don’t understand the cover at all. I usually love Goudge’s covers and titles (the double meaning of Immediate Family and the fun cover with a proper tie in is the best example that comes to mind)

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