Under a Blackberry Moon: A Novel

( 10 )

Overview

Which wilderness is more treacherous—the one she must cross to find her home . . . or the one she must traverse to find love?

Just a few days after she gave birth alone in the northwoods, a recently widowed young Chippewa woman stumbled into a nearby lumber camp in search of refuge from the winter snows. Come summer, it is clear that Moon Song cannot stay among the rough-and-tumble world of white lumbermen, ...

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Under a Blackberry Moon ( Book #2): A Novel

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Overview

Which wilderness is more treacherous—the one she must cross to find her home . . . or the one she must traverse to find love?

Just a few days after she gave birth alone in the northwoods, a recently widowed young Chippewa woman stumbled into a nearby lumber camp in search of refuge from the winter snows. Come summer, it is clear that Moon Song cannot stay among the rough-and-tumble world of white lumbermen, and so the camp owner sends Skypilot, his most trusted friend, to accompany her on the long and treacherous journey back to her people.

But when tragedy strikes off the shore of Lake Superior, Moon Song and Skypilot must depend on each other for survival. With every step they take into the forbidding woods, they are drawn closer together, until it seems the unanswerable questions must be asked. Can she leave her culture to enter his? Can he leave his world to enter hers? Or will they simply walk away from a love that seems too complicated to last?

Get swept into a wild realm where beauty masks danger and only the truly courageous survive in a story that will grip your heart and your imagination.

Serena B. Miller is the RITA Award-winning author of The Measure of Katie Calloway and A Promise to Love, as well as numerous articles for periodicals such as Woman's World, Guideposts, Reader's Digest, Focus on the Family, Christian Woman, and more. She lives on a farm in southern Ohio. Please visit www.serenabmiller.com for more.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
08/12/2013
Miller won a RITA for The Measure of Katie Calloway, and this book features the same characters and setting: the post-Civil War North Woods of Michigan. Moon Song, a young Chippewa woman with a new baby, has found sustenance and friendship among a group of white loggers in Bay City. When she decides to return to her people, Isaac Ross, known as Skypilot from his days as a preacher in pre-Civil War Virginia, accompanies her on the journey. An accident along the way transforms their passage into a struggle for survival. A variety of complications thicken the plot, even as Moon Song and Skypilot slowly realize their mutual attraction. Miller presents a complex backstory for Moon Song that ties itself up too prettily. Her historical research generates a lot of eddies in the narrative flow, and some of those side developments and details slow the main plot engine—the growing relationship between the two principal characters. Fans of Jane Kirkpatrick will enjoy Miller’s historical recreation. Agent: MacGregor Literary. (Oct.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780800721183
  • Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 10/15/2013
  • Pages: 352
  • Sales rank: 380,151
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Serena B. Miller is the RITA Award-winning author of The Measure of Katie Calloway and A Promise to Love, as well as numerous articles for periodicals such as Woman's World, Guideposts, Reader's Digest, Focus on the Family, Christian Woman, and more. She lives on a farm in southern Ohio.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 10 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 9 of 10 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 20, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Under a Blackberry Moon by Serena B. Miller is described as a se

    Under a Blackberry Moon by Serena B. Miller is described as a sequel to her earlier novel, The Measure of Katie Calloway, yet it works perfectly as a stand-alone.

    Serena is a new author to me and I must say that I loved her writing. With nicely-flowing prose and rich historical detail, Serena weaves a fascinating story with memorable characters and a compelling Native American theme.

    Moon Song, "daughter of the lake country," and Skypilot, a former preacher in Virginia, are well-developed lead characters that I grew to love more with each page turn. Isabella and Jesuit priest Father Slovic are strong secondary characters who add much richness to the narrative.

    Under a Blackberry Moon opens in the rugged lumber town of Bay City, Michigan in 1868. It's not long, however, before a tragic accident strands Moon Song, Skypilot and Isabella in the Upper Peninsula wilderness, where we see Moon Song's strength, courage, and natural survival skills. Skypilot reflects that . . . "In Bay City, she had seemed awkward and out of place . . . Watching her here was like watching a graceful doe melt into the shadows of the forest." This is a novel where the picturesque Upper Peninsula practically becomes a major character.

    The Native American theme captivated me as Serena skillfully brought in not only the mistreatment they often received, but so much interesting detail about their way of life and religious beliefs. For instance, months of the year were given descriptive "moon" names - like "Blackberry Moon" for the month when blackberries ripen, "Falling Leaves Moon" for when the leaves fall, "Freezing Moon" for when the snows come, etc. And the women did what we would think of as a man's work, for . . . "A warrior would fight to defend his woman, but he would not lighten her load. That was the way it had always been."

    One of my favorite parts in the book is a conversation between Skypilot and Father Slovic. Forced out of the ministry before the Civil War for publicly taking a stand against slavery, Skypilot had continued ministering to people in need. Father Slovic wisely tells him, "You never left the ministry at all. . . . You simply carried it with you. Living a life of service to others is the most powerful sermon of all."

    The growing love between Moon Song and Skypilot is beautiful to watch, as it seems their differences might be insurmountable at first. "There was no way Skypilot could fit into her tribe, and she had already failed to fit into his." While the ending might turn out as one expects, how we get there is surprisingly creative and moving.

    I thoroughly enjoyed Under a Blackberry Moon and will be reading more of Serena's novels. I highly recommend this story to all readers.

    This book was provided by Lanette Haskins and Revell in exchange for my honest review.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 9, 2013

    When I heard that Serena Miller had written a story about the he

    When I heard that Serena Miller had written a story about the heroic character from The Measure of Katie Calloway – Skypilot – I knew I had to read this book. I loved Skypilot; his character, his hard-working nature, and how he was willing to sacrifice himself to save the life of Robert’s young daughter.

    In Under a Blackberry Moon, Skypilot accompanies the native young woman, Moon Song, and her eight month old son from Jack’s lumber camp back to her tribe. 
    We were introduced to Moon Song in The Measure of Katie Calloway where she stumbled into Robert’s lumber camp. She was also the person who nursed Skypilot back to health. They developed a friendship during that time, but feelings are running a bit deeper than a mere friendship for Moon Song. She is trying to keep them under control, because she doesn’t believe that a white man will stay with a native woman over the long haul. She has seen that happen often enough in the tribes.

    During their travel, tragedy strikes and lives are lost. Thankfully Skypilot, Moon Song, her son, and a white woman named Isabella survive. Stranded on a sandbank with no way to get off, Moon Song’s survival instinct kicks in. She leads Skypilot and Isabella to a safer place, meanwhile searching  and preparing food. 

    Skypilot—big and strong as he is—has to rely on Moon Song to survive their trek through the wilderness of Michigan. His admiration for the woman grows into something more, but Moon Song doesn’t hesitate to turn him down. Will Skypilot find a way to win her heart? 

    What a wonderful story! I really enjoyed reading Moon Song and Skypilot’s adventure. Moon Song turned out to be an interesting woman; sensitive but tough. She knows what she wants and what needs to be done. Skypilot already stole my heart in The Measure of Katie Calloway and it was a delight to get to know him better and see how he held onto his faith and believes.
    To make the story even more interesting, there were some unexpected twists and turns that kept me glued to the pages. The unforeseen surprise at the end kept me smiling long after I finished the book. 

    *Thanks to the publisher for providing me with a review copy through NetGalley.*

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 20, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    UNDER THE BLACKBERRY MOON by Serena B. Miller is an exciting Ins

    UNDER THE BLACKBERRY MOON by Serena B. Miller is an exciting Inspirational Historical Romance set in 1868 Bay City, Michigan. You will get swept away with the story of Moon Song and Skypilot on their journey of danger, survival, two cultures colliding, faith,the Chippewa Indians,compromise and love. They have to a dangerous,sometimes treacherous wilderness to get Moon Song back to her people. Can love find its way into the lives of these two very different people? TO find out you must read "Under the Blackberry Moon" you will not regret your choice of reading material. Fast paced and filled with adventure,allure and romance. If you have not read one of Ms. Miller's stories I would highly recommend you do, you will not regret your choice. I love Moon Song, and Skypilot's stories, they embrace their cultures with love,honor and sacrifice. A must read! Received for an honest review from the publisher.

    “Available October 2013 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”

    RATING: 4.5

    HEAT RATING: SWEET

    REVIEWED BY: AprilR, Courtesy of My Book Addiction and More

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 14, 2013

    Seeking refuge from the harsh winter weather Moon Song and her n

    Seeking refuge from the harsh winter weather Moon Song and her newborn baby stumble into a lumber camp where has been taken under the wings of the campers. Now it's time to return to her people. Accompanied by Skypilot, one of the men in the camp, they begin their journey. Shortly after boarding the train a tragedy occurs and they find themselves in the wilderness struggling to survive. 




    Along the way Skypilot reveals his love for Moon Song, although she is in love with him she refuses to let him know. Having been betrayed by a white man previously she won't take a chance with Skypilot. 




    Their journey is one that will touch your heart with tender moments, Moon Song's marriage to a white man, the maltreatment her people endure, Skypilot's broken heart, and the fact that they are of different faiths. This is a really good story, well written, entertaining. 




    I received a copy of this book free from Revell in exchange for an honest review. 




    "Available October 2013 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group."

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 12, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Under a Blackberry Moon By Serena B. Miller Under a Blackberry

    Under a Blackberry Moon
    By Serena B. Miller

    Under a Blackberry Moon is an intriguing title and the book is as intriguing and captivating as the
    name that graces its cover.  This is Moon Song's journey - a journey to discover her heart and a
    journey to rediscover herself.

    Bay City, Michigan is no place for a woman.  And a woman who is also an Indian is in even greater
    danger when the lumber camps emptied for the summer.  The only place left for Moon Song is
    home - a journey of great distance and hundreds of miles that would take her across the state and
    through the forested wilderness.  

    But Moon Song's friends refuse to let her make this dangerous journey on her own.  So Skypilot
    accompanies her and her nine month old son aboard a steamship.  But something goes terribly
    wrong and soon they are fighting for their survival in the very wilderness that her friends wanted her
    to avoid.  But a greater danger than the wilderness is lurking - the danger of a heart falling in love.  

    Moon Song can't fall in love with a white man.  In Moon Song's experience white men always leave
    behind the Indian woman whose heart they've captured.   And Skypilot is sure to break her heart just
    as her father broke her mother's heart and her own.  

    With her heart, her family, and her way of life at risk Moon Song is faced with a choice - a choice that
    could forever change her and all she holds dear.  Sometimes the truths that we think we know are
    only half truths. Truths that are only one side of the whole and Under a Blackberry Moon is Moon Song
    and Skypilot's journey to discover the whole truth and their hearts.

    Under a Blackberry Moon is a lovely book that looks at the issues that faced a people whose world was
    changing around them whether they wanted it to or not.  Seen through the eyes of those who were being
    forced into being who they were not, this is book you won't forget!

    I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

    Available October 2013 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 12, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Serena B. Miller in her new book ¿Under A Blackberry Moon¿ publi

    Serena B. Miller in her new book “Under A Blackberry Moon” published by Revell Books takes us into the life of Moon Song.
    From the back cover:  Which wilderness is more treacherous–the one she must cross to find her home . . . or the one she must traverse to find love?




    Just a few days after she gave birth alone in the northwoods, a recently widowed young Chippewa woman stumbled into a nearby lumber camp in search of refuge from the winter snows. Come summer, it is clear that Moon Song cannot stay among the rough-and-tumble world of white lumbermen, and so the camp owner sends Skypilot, his most trusted friend, to accompany her on the long and treacherous journey back to her people.
    But when tragedy strikes off the shore of Lake Superior, Moon Song and Skypilot must depend on each other for survival. With every step they take into the forbidding woods, they are drawn closer together, until it seems the unanswerable questions must be asked. Can she leave her culture to enter his? Can he leave his world to enter hers? Or will they simply walk away from a love that seems too complicated to last?
    Get swept into a wild realm where beauty masks danger and only the truly courageous survive in a story that will grip your heart and your imagination.
    I like history and ”Under A Blackberry Moon” is filled with history.  I feel that there are not enough stories that detail the hard life and indignities that the Native American People had to endure.  Some of the scenes in this book will tear out your heart and make you want to cry if not really cry (I guess that depends on whether or not you are male or female).  This is all about a journey home, to find where you truly belong and with whom.  I think Ms. Miller has done an outstanding job of bringing Moon Song to life.  Wow, what a superb character with such depth.  And Skypilot is another person that I would have loved to really know.  ”Under A Blackberry Moon”  is filled with action and adventure.  It is filled with family and overcoming adversities.  I think that “Under A Blackberry Moon” is a winner!   Ms. Miller has given us a wonderful, sweet story with power and depth that will keep you flipping pages.  I liked it a lot and look forward to more from this talented author.
    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Revell Publishers.   I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
    Available October 2013 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 11, 2013

     Under a Blackberry Moon had me from the cover. Look at that bea

     Under a Blackberry Moon had me from the cover. Look at that beautiful sky, and the reflection of the light on the water. That gives you a hint of the place where this story unfolds. And trust me, although a picture is often worth a thousand words, the word-pictures in this book that describe this place let you see it as you read. 
    Then there is the sloe-eyed girl in the soft buckskin dress on the cover. 
    Barely 20 years of age, Moon Song is a widow with an infant son who hasn't even received his Indian name yet. This Chippewa maiden has spent the last months recovering her health and then working at the logging camp where she had sought shelter. 
    She and her little son have been a blessing at the camp, but the fact that she is an Indian evokes abusive reactions from some people. The camp isn't a safe place for a beautiful girl who is considered "less than human." 

    So Moon Song decides to strike out alone with her son, and travel back to what is left of her people on their reservation. It is then that Skypilot, her friend from the logging camp, determines to travel with her. This plot gives us the promise of a fine story and it delivers a tale of adventure and sadness, hope and heritage, wilderness and so-called civilization. 

    And the final third of this book was best of all, and was my favorite part of this story. 
    Can't give away any details, but lets put it this way: self-sacrificing, ever-growing, giving Love. 
    Thank you Revell for my copy to review! 
    *Available October 2013 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.*

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 10, 2013

    Author Serena B. Miller takes readers back to the Post Civil War

    Author Serena B. Miller takes readers back to the Post Civil War Northwoods of Michigan in her latest book, Under a Blackberry Moon. Miller takes on Native American culture, mixed race relationships and wilderness survival in this novel that will thrill readers. Miller's knack for simple, yet beautiful storytelling is showcased against a riotous lumber camp, the serenity of the Michigan back country and the culture of the Chippewa Indians. With great historical detail that is a feast for the senses, Under a Blackberry Moon will capture the reader from the first page and won't let go! 




    I was really happy when I received this book for review. Having read Serena B. Miller's previous books set in the same area of Michigan, around the same time period, I knew I was in for a treat. The cover of Under a Blackberry Moon is beautiful, the eyes of the model are beautiful and unassuming and I think it captures the idea of a young Chippewa mother, seeking direction. 




    Moon Song is a young Chippewa mother who is forced to find a way to to survive a harsh Michigan winter after her husband dies. She wanders into the Bay City logging camp and finds peace and friendship, but realizes this is not a place to raise her son. I liked the fact that the author made Moon Song a strong woman. She is a survivalist in every sense of the word. And she has that fierceness of a mother protecting her child when she needs it. I also enjoyed the fact that she keeps her feeling for Skypilot inside and cherishes them for a time before she lets him know. She was a very wise character and I loved reading about her.




    I think one of the most fascinating parts of the book was all of the cultural information we learn about the Chippewa Indians in this novel. Miller has certainly done her homework. The historical detail is rich and fulfilling. Readers will find out how the Chippewa lived, from what they ate and how they cooked to how the lived off the land and survived in wilderness. I loved all of the interesting details and back story that Miller provided for Moon Song and her people, it was a joy to read.




    Skypilot was an interesting hero as well. Though Moon Song stole the show as the main character. Issac is a very moral and spiritual man. He is resilient and has such a beautiful heart. As his feelings for Moon Song started to grow, readers begin to see all of the obstacles that this couple has to face. I liked the fact that Skypilot doesn't worry about what other people will think of his relationship with an Indian woman, his concern is for how difficult it would be for one or the other of them to leave their own culture. I also liked the subtle way he talked with Moon Song about their beliefs and how he was tolerant and accepting and did not judge or condescend. It was just a beautiful relationship.




    I wasn't quite sure how it would all turn out with the grueling journey, the need to survive the elements and the love growing between the two main characters. There were a lot of twists and turns and plenty of things to try to keep straight but it was an effortless process because of the beauty of the story. It was really a feast for the senses, you could smell the sawdust from the lumber camp and hear the birds twittering in the woods. It was just a wonderfully written story. Simple and full of love.

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  • Posted October 8, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    I loved this story, and felt I was walking with them. The descri

    I loved this story, and felt I was walking with them. The descriptions of the tundra was so wonderful, and breath taking.
    After recovering her health Moon Song is now strong enough to begin her trip home to her people the Chippewas, and Skypilot has chosen to take her back safely. For Skypilot, his feelings for Moon Song become deeper as they travel.
    This is one action packed story, it seems there is a disaster around each corner, and when things start to calm down, it is not to be. Loved how God has his hand placed on them. Also who couldn't love that baby...so good, never cries. There is also a lot of heartache and some unnecessary loss of life.
    The luck of being stranded with a smart Indian woman, her survival skills amazed me. She sure had a lot of energy. This is a story not to be missed, we learn that some of the Indian beliefs are the same as Christian, but will Moon Song accept Jesus? Skypilot needs a wife, but cannot be unequally yoked.
    Come along on this great adventure, you sure won't be disappointed!

    I received this book through The Revell Blogger's Tour, and was not required to give a positive review.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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