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A story of love and loss
"Solomon's Oak" is a beautifully crafted story of loss and love found. Glory's husband has died suddenly and she is trying to survive by renting out her wedding chapel in the shadow of Solomon's Oak a beautiful oak tree. We are then introduced to Juniper a young girl who has been abandoned by her family and placed in Glory's care. Glory and her Dan had fostered several boys over the years but this is her first time fostering a girl. We also follow the story of Joseph Virgil an ex police officer who was wounded and meets Glory trying to photograph Solomon's Oak on Glory's ranch.
Catherine W. (Florissant, MO)
Families are complicated
These three souls are the heart of the story and we follow their journey together to build new relationships and love. Ms Mapson's dialogue seemed to flow from one character to the next and she brings you into the story effortlessly.
I would recommend this book to teens and also book clubs for the discussion of human relationships. Ms. Mapson's brings you into each character and you can easily find yourself caught up in this wonderful story.
The book reads very fast and catches your interest quickly. The author changes point of view among the characters to give us additional insight into their thoughts and feelings as she unveils the plot line. The characters are well drawn and complex. The interactions between the characters are believable and their reactions pull at our emotions. The ending seems natural and satisfies our need for closure. A very easy book to lose yourself in!
Kandi D. (Beaverton, OR)
Soloman's Oak by Jo-Ann Mapson
Jo-Ann Mapson has a talent for creating fascinating, down-to-earth characters you connect with right from the beginning and who you want to follow to the end to see how their story plays out. I’ve read several of her books and in my opinion this is one of her best. The three central characters in this story each have their own heart breaking past to deal with and when they come together they help each other see the world in a whole new way. This is a wonderful story of personal growth and a second chance at life. I highly recommend it.
Tiffiny C. (Chillicothe, Il)
I read to page 149. I just could not connect with the book. I really tried to keep going in hopes of finding some connection but it actually just got worse. I will say I liked the idea of the story but it just did not hold my attention.
Sherri A. (westbrook, ct)
Reading a novel by Jo-Ann Mapson is like spending quality time with a best girlfriend--it goes by too quick and you can't wait to do it again! "Solomon's Oak" delivers on all fronts; from Glory, recently widowed, to Juniper, the teen who comes for the night only to stay forever, to Joseph, the ex-cop with his own pain--these characters WILL stay with you...
Amber B. (Canton, Ohio)
I really enjoyed this engaging novel. I found the characters raw and vulnerable - and while they certainly came to grips with their losses, it felt genuine and not sentimental. More importantly, they seemed to let themselves feel their losses for what they were and didn't force themselves to just 'get over them.' I loved the imaginative wedding scenes Mapson created. Some of the dialogue felt a little forced in the beginning, but got better as the story progressed. There are many themes for book clubs to explore, such as grief, honesty, the role of nature, vulnerability with others, marriage, friendships, family relationships, and community.
Jinny K. (Fremont, CA)
Was this plot a little sappy? Was the ending quite predictable? Maybe a little more dog and horse-oriented than I usually prefer? Yes, to all of those questions.
Carolyn L. (Summerville, SC)
However, I was captivated by the characters and their situations and curious about exactly how the predictable ending would come to be.
The dialogue between Glory and Juniper-Glory's droll responses to Juniper's sarcasm-are priceless and believable.
So, although this is not my typical favorite novel, I really enjoyed and truly missed the characters when the book was done.
This is a good story featuring three characters whom the reader can sympathize with and root for. It's well-written and held my attention. It's hard to express just what I felt was lacking. I think I wanted more - more detail about Juniper's problems in school, more about what went into the wedding preparations, more about Joseph's background. The ending seemed a little rushed and incomplete. That said, I did like the book!