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The Blackberry Bush Paperback – June 1, 2011


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Summerside Press (June 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1609361164
  • ISBN-13: 978-1609361167
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 5.4 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,804,679 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

One of the most beautiful books I've ever read...
-Simay Yildiz, Turkish book critic


Some books make you silent...
Some books give you goosebumps...
Some books change your life...
The Blackberry Bush...it's one of those books. So read it!
-Geert Kimpen, bestselling Dutch author of De Geheime Newton, De Kabbalist, Rachel en de Mysterie van de Liefde, etc.


A story with the power to change your story.  
-Leonard Sweet, bestselling author, professor, speaker


One of the most beautiful books I've ever read...<div></div><div><span> </span>-Simay Yildiz, Turkish book critic</div>

Some books make you silent...<div>Some books give you goosebumps...</div><div>Some books change your life...</div><div>The Blackberry Bush...it's one of those books. So read it!</div><div>-Geert Kimpen, bestselling Dutch author of De Geheime Newton, De Kabbalist, Rachel en de Mysterie van de Liefde, etc.</div>

A story with the power to change your story.  <div>-Leonard Sweet, bestselling author, professor, speaker</div> --Leonard Sweet, bestselling author, professor, speaker

From the Author

Two things drove my writing of this book:
ONE: My wife's mother lived through the German occupation of Holland in World War 2. She witnessed the public mocking and humiliation of women who had dated German solders during the war. They were tarred and feathered by angry mobs. I wondered, can any good come of something so terrible? In a sense, this is a redemption story...
TWO: I am convinced that the human condition is a series of broken responses to impossible demands. Only through a spiritual rebirth can we break this cycle of anxiety and pain...

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Thanks for blessing us with this story.
TimRobertson
While telling so many stories in the space of one novel may be risky, I found each of the characters to be very interesting.
Jennifer Clark Tinker
The Blackberry Bush had a unique literary style in the way the author crafted the story.
Michelle Sutton

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Simay Yildiz on May 24, 2011
Format: Paperback
This book first got my attention when I saw its cover and its name. And then I was totally sold when I read "Two babies--Kati and Josh--are born on opposite sides of the world at the very moment the Berlin Wall falls." Seriously, how wrong can you go with a story line like that? Not very, but I so did not expect it to be as beautiful as The Blackberry Bush.

The story does start with two babies being born just as the Berlin Wall is falling. Right from the beginning, when you look at the family chart at the beginning of the book, you see where Kati and Josh are connected. Finding out how and seeing how they come together in life is an adventure, for lack of a better world, that takes you through different times, different people and different points of view.

I must admit I got quite uneasy when I realized the religious aspect of the book because 1) I'm not religious, 2) Having been raised Muslim, I don't know much about Christianity, and I'm sure I got none of the bible references. The uneasiness faded away though as events started to unfold because it ended up being a spiritual journey for me, rather than religious.

When it comes to the characters, you can relate to most of them, and some of them I'm sure you know already. Kati I could most definitely relate to, being that she's weird-looking when judged by what's considered normal in most societies, and she struggles with it like most of us do. And her relationship with her grandfather Harald, whom she describes as being the only person who "gets" her was very endearing. It's amazing to see all the characters -- both the adults and the children -- learn from their struggles and find out that life actually IS beautiful.

I also really like the metaphor that the name of the book represents.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Lori Willey on May 29, 2011
Format: Paperback
As Deep Cries Out to Deep

The astoundingly beautiful depth to the Blackberry Bush takes you into places so deep you can scarcely catch your breath and there in that depth, you breathe. Like the tip of an iceberg, you sense it is the beginning of something much greater.

Moving through the lives of the characters you can easily find yourself; recognizing your part, your place or someone you know, there is a familiarity that resonates. That thing you can't place your finger on begins to touch you.

As Kati pours over the beloved watches with Opa, she says that they lose track of time as they wind them and hold them up to their ears to hear the ticking. So moves the novel. Losing track of time, you read along with an internal comforting tick that moves you along. Even while looking back you find you are still moving forward waiting to hear the next tick that you know is there.

This is a book that is so rich with imagery, meaning, depth, and faith. There are treasures of hope for the hopeless and a Way even in the darkest place. The Blackberry Bush opens the doors and shines a light for you to begin finding your own treasures that have been there all along.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Joan N. on June 27, 2011
Format: Paperback
Two babies were born on Nov. 9, 1989, Kati in Bonn and Josh in California. The Berlin Wall was crumbling. Fourteen years later the two are on flights at the same time, flying in opposite directions, switching continents.
Kati is not beautiful like her favored older sister. She doesn't have perfect hair. She's skinny and looks like an awkward boy.
Josh doesn't fit into his family. He cannot live up to his father's expectations. "...[I]t's impossible to please the judges in life. Eventually everyone eliminates you. How can I check out of this game and still stay involved in life?" (139)
Though they have common roots, their lives do not cross paths until they are both twenty one. Then everything changes. Kati knows, "...for the first time in my life, my world has shifted into balance...as if I've been walking tilted, and now I'm standing straight." (152) And Josh realizes, "Only by abandoning all attempts to meet others' expectations can you truly hear the voice of the Spirit and be freed to pursue what God would have you uniquely do." (167)

This is a haunting book, portraying the physical world as it overlaps the dream world and the world of visions and truth. In some ways the story seems so simple. In other ways it is so deep I wonder how many times I'd need to read it to mine its depths.

Interwoven through the narrative is the "backstory", the lives gone before that make us who we are today.
Another main theme is the blackberry bushes seen in each of their hometowns, at her school and at his surfing beach. Housholder says the bushes take over, just like darker parts of human behavior. They represent the thorny thicket that entangles us when face impossible demands.
My favorite theme is balance.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By adayriddle on June 24, 2011
Format: Paperback
Absolutely stunning!

This is a book that everyone needs to read. There are so many things that are quote worthy that my copy has pencil markings all in it and page references marked in the back.

As if the story was not compelling enough the author has been gracious enough to include a section of questions. If you are looking for an excellent book for a book club this is it! You will not be disappointed in the storyline nor will your group have a shortage of discussion regarding the topic.

This is a coming of age story of sorts for two very different people separated by a continent. They are connected by the faith of their grandparents and a story that connects them in ways they never would have guessed. An old story of love, treachery, betrayal of all sorts and the prevailing evidence of God's grace and forgiveness. This story comes together in the third generation and with it comes the finality of God's infinite love and power of restoration.

Join the journey that spans three generations. Be pulled into the story and discover the truth that resonates within the pages. Open your eyes to the back light of your own story - - Allow God to reveal to you the same power in your own life.

The book opens with this quote on page 16, "Walls are real, yet they always come down. Creation and Nature never favor walls. They start to crumble even before the mortar dries."

It ends with the following quotes: "But faith and blessings will always find a way to be fruitful and multiply./Faith like water, will always find its way back to its Source. Carry it, and it will carry you. Receive it from others, and pass it on to them.
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