Friday, February 28, 2014

Blog Tour: Giveaway & Review: A Fall of Marigolds by Susan Meissner

Giveaway Details:  We are giving away one copy of this amazing story to one lucky winner (US only).  Just enter the Rafflecopter below for your chance to win!

Author: Susan Meissner
Publisher: NAL Trade (Penguin)
Date of publication: February 2014

September 1911. On Ellis Island in New York Harbor, nurse Clara Wood cannot face returning to Manhattan, where the man she loved fell to his death in the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire. Then, while caring for a fevered immigrant whose own loss mirrors hers, she becomes intrigued by a name embroidered onto the scarf he carries…and finds herself caught in a dilemma that compels her to confront the truth about the assumptions she’s made. Will what she learns devastate her or free her? 

September 2011. On Manhattan’s Upper West Side, widow Taryn Michaels has convinced herself that she is living fully, working in a charming specialty fabric store and raising her daughter alone. Then a long-lost photograph appears in a national magazine, and she is forced to relive the terrible day her husband died in the collapse of the World Trade Towers…the same day a stranger reached out and saved her. Will a chance reconnection and a century-old scarf open Taryn’s eyes to the larger forces at work in her life?

A Fall of Marigolds is a beautifully written and compelling book.  I  truly think this is one of the best books I have read so far this year. The story alternates between Clara's story in 1911 and Taryn's story in 2011.  Both women have been directly affect by immensely tragic events in New York.  Since then, they have both been living in kind of a limbo.  Afraid to let go of the past and move forward.  While the events are 100 years apart, their lives "after" are so similar.  A beautiful scarf makes its way into the hands of both women and their lives change forever.

I will admit that I was reluctant to read this book since it deals with the horrific events of 9/11.  I know that is a day we will all remember.  It's also a day that I think affected every American in some way.  I have pretty much avoided any book of movie having to deal with that subject because it still chokes me up all these years later.  Reading Taryn's experience of that day was hard, but I thought the author did an amazing job of describing the events of that day.  Similarly, I found reading about the events of the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire difficult.  I had to look that one up as I had never heard of the awful fire that took the lives of over 140 factory workers.

I won't give away any details of either women's story.  I think it would ruin it for readers.  There are a few surprises for both women that come when they are ready to look at the truth of the events and how their lives  and views on love have been affected.  I found myself tearing up at a discovery that Taryn makes.  It isn't often that a book makes me cry.  As it says in the book, "It (love) is given to us not to hold onto or hide from, but to give away....Love is the only true constant in a fragile world."  Such true words! The ending was very bittersweet, but I loved it .

This is a beautiful book that I highly recommend.  I hope you love it as much as I did.    Make sure to enter our giveaway to win a copy of this amazing story!

About the author:

Susan Meissner was born in San Diego, California, the second of three. She spent her childhood in just two houses.  Her first writings are a laughable collection of oddly worded poems and predictable stories she wrote when she was eight.

She attended Point Loma College in San Diego, and married her husband, Bob, who is now an associate pastor and a chaplain in the Air Force Reserves, in 1980. When she is not working on a new novel, she is directing the small groups ministries at The Church at Rancho Bernardo. She also enjoy teaching workshops on writing and dream-following, spending time with my family, music, reading great books, and traveling.

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