I was given the opportunity by the One2One network to review “Once In a Blue Moon”, a novel by Eileen Goudge.
Often I can tell a good novel by its first line, and this one from the book drew me in immediately:
“The first time Kerrie Ann disappeared was only the warning shot, as it turned out.”
Right away, I was hooked.
Once In A Blue Moon is a story of love, loss and redemption, of being torn apart only to join again stronger.
It is about finding your family, finding what is most important to you, finding yourself.
It is primarily the story of two sisters, Lindsay, and Kerrie Ann, nine years younger. When Kerrie Ann was just three, she and Lindsay were split up as their mother was imprisoned for selling drugs.
Their neighbor, an eccentric but fiercely loving retired exotic dancer, Miss Honi Love, tried to keep them, but, to no avail.
And, just that easily, they became lost to one another, and also, to parts of themselves.
Thirty years later, Lindsay owns a bookstore by the sea in Blue Moon Bay, CA while Kerrie Ann who has had a much rougher childhood is trying to stay sober and get her own young daughter Bella back. Bella was taken from her, much as Lindsay and Kerrie Ann were taken from their own mother. The difference is that Kerrie Ann would do anything to get her back.
And so the journey continues, with the sisters finally re-uniting, hesitantly at first and then slowly opening up once again to each other. The bond they forge while trying to help get Bella back takes them to an even deeper place of love and trust than either has known.
I really love Eileen Goudge’s style. Her voice is honest and authentic and full of originality. The prose is beautiful and so descriptive I could see Kerrie Ann’s “dirty pink Keds” and Miss Honi’s “marigold curls”.
I very much admire her ability to write a novel with an engaging plot and still keep the poetry of the language.
People in the novel are like people in real life – helpful, hurtful, imperfect, mistrustful, sorrowful, joyful, and loving. I appreciate this glimpse into humanity as it is, not some sanitized romanticized version.
Ultimately it is love and forgiveness that provide a path home – to one another, and to ourselves.
It is not surprising that Eileen Goudge is a New York Times Bestselling Author, nor that there are four million copies of her books in print including “Woman in Red” and “The Diary”. I loved this novel and am looking forward to reading many more of them.
I highly recommend Once In A Blue Moon.
Look for it in bookstores now and on Amazon.com.