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Roseflower Creek: A Novel Paperback – July, 2003

115 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

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Ten-year-old Lori Jean believes that love can heal Ray, her abusive stepfather whose drunken rages have left Lori Jean and her mother beaten and bruised. Growing up impoverished in rural Georgia in the 1950s, Lori Jean survives abandonment by her biological father, as well as the deaths of her grandmother and her best friend, Carolee. Despite these tragedies, Lori Jean clings tenaciously to faith and hope. When she discovers that her stepfather was the victim of sexual abuse as a child, she struggles to "fix" Ray's problems, but unfortunately, his illness runs too deep. Told in southern dialect through the innocent eyes of a child, the first-person narrative effectively draws the reader into Lori Jean's world. Though the ending is a bit contrived, Miles' story proves haunting and even inspirational. Linda Zeilstra
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

A small book but it has a huge impact.

There are certain novels that stay with the reader long after the story is completed and Roseflower Creek is such a book.

Truly mesmerizing and raw ... A brilliant job... so heartfelt and personal.

A very moving story... Highly recommended with a box of tissues. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 248 pages
  • Publisher: Cumberland House; First Edition edition (July 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1581823770
  • ISBN-13: 978-1581823776
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 5.1 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (115 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,713,955 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Jackie Lee Miles is the author of Roseflower Creek and Cold Rock River. A resident of Georgia for thirty-five years, Miles hails from Wisconsin via South Dakota. She considers hereself a northern girl with a southern heart. Her critically accliamed debut novel, Roseflower Creek was the lead book when Cumberland House released it. Cold Rock River, also critically acclaimed, is the journey of two young women born a century apart. N.Y. Times bestselling author Dorothea Benton Frank states, "Cold Rock River is a powerful story of family, love and loss that will keep you up into the wee hours. Absolutely wonderful! Beautifully told and straight from the heart of an exquisitely talented writer." Miles current project, to be released in 2010, is entitled All That's True. Sourcebooks calls it "an authentic coming-of-age novel with a terrific takeaway." When not writing, Miles tours with The Dixie Darlin's, four nationally published book-writing belles with a passion for promotion. Visit the author at www.jlmiles.com. Write to the author at: jackie@jlmiles.com.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

84 of 86 people found the following review helpful By Barbara on November 20, 2001
Format: Hardcover
This book is short and a quick read, but you need to take your time to absorb the story, eventhough it's very tragic sad story of the only life this 10 year old little girl knew growing up in poverty with her mother and abusive stepfather. Lori Jeans young eyes witnesses her mother's sadness and bruises from the man her mother marries after Lori Jeans own father abandons her. This little girl tries hard to lead her stepfather down a better road. This story involves murder, incest, alcholism, wife & child abuse, poverty (beyond words), abortion, and so much more. But this story also involves love, deep friendship, mentorship, understanding, and most of all....forgiveness
I usually feel a little sad after a book like this, but this book leaves the reader thinking about forgiveness.
This book is exceptional. It's not just fiction, it's a book that makes you realize that others act the way they do because of the life they have lived......but it's not an excuse, only a fact. This author has done a tremendously good job with this storyline.
Don't miss the chance to read and think about this book. This book is terrific.
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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Gayla M. Collins VINE VOICE on May 29, 2009
Format: Paperback
Lori Jean, a 10 year old child from rural Georgia, narrates what is one of the most gripping stories ever written. Poverty, abuse, horrible accidents and death all overwhelm, but our 10 year old protagonist accepts, forgives, and infuses hope where it seems hopeless. Living with an abusive stepfather and distant mother, she befriends people who validate her existence....Uncle Melvin, Aunt Lexie, their twins, Mz Hawkins, and her dearest friend, Carolee, infuse Lori Jean with hope that the world is not all about terror.

The book is harsh as the subject matter is such; however, Lori Jean's take on so many advetnures she has you smiling and laughing out loud at times. This character is a keeper and she will be in my heart along with Ellen Foster, Emma, Lily, and many other children that endear themselves to me through their creators.

J.L. Miles is a new discovery for me and I have ordered her other two novels as I have complete confidence they will keep me as riveted as Roseflower Creek did. Her use of precise descriptions, colloquial language weave a story that will never let you completely out of it's web.

Highly, highly recommend.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Shannon Greika on September 10, 2001
Format: Hardcover
From the moment Lori Jean begins her story, with "The morning I died it rained. . .", I wasn't able to put it down. Read it and laugh, read it and weep. A most special story. An unforgettable child.
Lori Jean taps into your memories and never lets go. You might think it's a book for women. You may think it's a book for a friend. I think it's just right for anyone who survived childhood.
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28 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Tammy Vickroy on August 3, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Reminded me of an adult, macabre version of Junie B. Jones. Though the author tries to write with the lightness and humor of a child, which I usually love, many parts of this story made me sick to my stomach. I would have stopped reading had I realized the disturbing scenes go clear to the end of the story and in fact increase.

I found no redeeming value in the father, although the author tries to develop some compassion for him at several points.

Clearly, I am in the minority, based on the other reviews I see here! Just thought I'd pass along my 2 cents worth in case you're considering this book based on the reviews, like I did. If you enjoy stories about children with unfortunate and/or unusual childhoods told from their perspective, here are a few I thought were great:

Too Close to the Falls
Peace Like a River
The Glass Castle
Blackbird
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Jonpol J Anderson on November 26, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Being the father of a 5 year old little girl I was emotionally attached from page one.
The story is told from the point of view of a recently deceased 10 year old girl who had been beaten to death by her alcoholic step father. Despite his own traumatic upbringing he was truly a decent man had it not been for the liquor.
The mother, so lonely as to accept this abusive man into her life to ease her own pain of being alone, finally paid the price with her dear daughters life.
As I turn the page I find myself hoping for a better ending for the poor, sweet Lori-Jean.
The story is gripping, vivid, and heartfelt.
I was left with a broken heart, but most of all a wake up call. Life could be worse for all of us.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By M. Rehm on April 24, 2008
Format: Paperback
This was a fantastic read!! I couldn't put it down and finished it within 12 hours! (I should have been sleeping...) This story will break your heart and you will fall in love with Lori Jean. This was a fabulous book that I would recommend to any avid reader.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Cherrybomb on January 22, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'll admit that this book hooked me from the first sentence. A sentence, as it turns out, that the author borrowed from a real life event. It's too sad to think about that these kind of things happen in real life.

As engaging as it was, I only gave it three stars because the whole story left me with a sick feeling. Too much bad and not enough good. I was also very annoyed at the way the abuser's actions were excused by his violent past. I don't think this was intentional. I believe the author was trying to make points about the value of forgiveness and the effects of child abuse on future generations. Even so, I found myself angry at the justifications. I also thought it was too unbelievable that a 10 year old could grasp these difficult concepts.
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