Midnight at the Blackbird Cafe

Midnight at the Blackbird Cafe

by Heather Webber


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Heather Webber's Midnight at the Blackbird Cafe is a captivating blend of magical realism, heartwarming romance, and small-town Southern charm.

Nestled in the mountain shadows of Alabama lies the little town of Wicklow. It is here that Anna Kate has returned to bury her beloved Granny Zee, owner of the Blackbird Café.

It was supposed to be a quick trip to close the café and settle her grandmother’s estate, but despite her best intentions to avoid forming ties or even getting to know her father’s side of the family, Anna Kate finds herself inexplicably drawn to the quirky Southern town her mother ran away from so many years ago, and the mysterious blackbird pie everybody can’t stop talking about.

As the truth about her past slowly becomes clear, Anna Kate will need to decide if this lone blackbird will finally be able to take her broken wings and fly.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781250198594
Publisher: Tom Doherty Associates
Publication date: 07/16/2019
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 36,425
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.10(h) x 1.30(d)

About the Author

Heather Webber is the author of more than twenty mystery novels, including the Nina Quinn series, and has been twice nominated for an Agatha Award. She's a homebody who loves to be close to her family, read, watch reality TV (especially cooking competition shows), drink too much coffee, crochet, and bake (mostly cookies). Heather grew up in a suburb of Boston, but currently she lives in the Cincinnati area with her family and is hard at work on her next book.

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Midnight at the Blackbird Cafe 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 42 reviews.
Anonymous 28 days ago
Anonymous 30 days ago
I loved everything about this book . It gently blends relationships and personal growth with a touch of magic that makes you feel good right down to your toes. The author has never disappointed in all her books (and I try to read them all). This is one of her best.
BookAddictFL 25 days ago
Caution: Reading this book might cause laughter, occasional tears, and intense hunger. I loved this book! I want to move to Wicklow, eat breakfast at the Blackbird Cafe every day, hang out with all the people, and watch the blackbirds at midnight. This is a highly character-driven story, and oh did I love the eclectic cast inhabiting these pages. They're all unique and incredibly well developed. Even the minor characters come alive. These characters feel like they could step off the pages and join you for tea and pie. While this story has a whimsical feel, I wouldn't call it a light read. The content has too much emotional depth and too many layers for that label. It's the kind of story that makes you think about relationships and fate and possibilities. My only complaint is that the book doesn't come with pie! *I received a review copy from the publisher, via BookishFirst.*
Janeybloom 29 days ago
do not typically gravitate towards books that claim to have elements of "magical realism" but Heather Webber presented her version of greater forces at work in a way that I absolutely loved. This book takes place in Alabama which I knew would either make or break the plot for me. As a lifelong resident of Alabama, I know that sometimes when it is sued as the setting in books it is not always in the most positive light. Again, Webber did an amazing job with a difficult piece of the plot and made the setting so real it almost felt like it was a character just like any of the others. The book is told from the alternating perspectives of two women whose connection to each other simultaneously means that are at odds but connected in a very important way. Over the course of the book, we see their bond grow and change as well as their bonds and relationships with those around them. This beautiful book will show you time and again how people can change and be changed and it will most definitely have you reaching for some pie!
irener 2 days ago
This book wasn't just captivating it was magical! It pulled me in right from the start, didn't want to put it down to adult for anything. I devoured this book!! My first read my Heather Webber and probably won't be my last. Anna Kate grew up wondering why Wicklow was a forbidden place, when she arrived for her grandmother's funeral, she saw nothing but community. Well for the most part. She was a mystery to the town, and she was set on finding out her own mystery. Each character pulls you into their story and it pulls your heartstrings. Have a box of tissues ready when you dive into this mystical, magical, loving book. I giggled, got a little mad and even shed a few tears. This book shows what family, community and love can be, and what it can do.
vickeyu 2 days ago
What A Great Summer Read! Anna Kate has taken over her deceased grandmother's cafe as a request of her will. It will only be for a short time and then Anna Kate can get back to her own life. What she doesn't realize is that everything she knows about her family history is about to be rewritten. There are people in town that know more about her than her mother had ever disclosed. There are people who hate her for being her mother's daughter as well as those that love her, unconditionally, because she is her mother's daughter. What appears to be just a simple straightforward story is more complicated than you think. The relatives and friends that Anna Kate meets tug at her heartstrings and keep her from her promises. This is a great tale that would make an awesome movie!
rgp1950 2 days ago
This book is not the genre I usually read, but I’m very glad I happened upon it. It was a page turner after I got through the first few pages. The story is well written, has a lot of dialog which I like, and moves along at a fast pace. I like the way the author seamlessly tells the story from the point of view of different characters. Not all authors can do this without having the story appear fragmented. Ms. Weber does a great job. It’s the kind of writing that has you staying up to read just one more chapter, before you finally put it down five chapters later. Then, find yourself picking it up again while waiting on your morning beverage to be ready.
AWilcox777 2 days ago
Amazing! Phenomenal! Highly recommend to everyone! This book has really taken its spot on my top favorites list! The characters were so easy to get to know and the story moved at a perfect pace. Moments of OMG, and tears and laughing; heartache and joy. It was more beyond expectations! I can't say enough how amazing the entire book is! Every. Single. Word.
BookFreakOut 3 days ago
Midnight at the Blackbird Cafe weaves a cozy, heartwarming story you'll want to wrap around yourself like a blanket. With themes of homecoming from both Natalie and Anna Kate's perspective, we see small-town Wicklow through the eyes of one who is returning to her childhood home, and one who has been kept away by her mother. They also both have to grapple in their own ways with grief, healing and the pain of secrets. But while their troubles are sincere, the tone of the book isn't going to drag you down - an undercurrent of hope, family and friendship runs throughout the story, even when that friendship is coupled with the small-town exasperation of everybody knowing everyone's personal business. The dash of magic from the blackbirds and the cafe's pie adds a fun twist to Wicklow's lore, and this fantasy element doesn't override or undermine the poignant story. Midnight at the Blackbird Cafe is a beautiful book about honoring family and heritage, healing from the past, and making a conscious decision to step into the future.
Donna172 6 days ago
Midnight at the Blackbird Cafe is like a breath of fresh air! At the beginning the reader is introduced to Anna Kate to the small town of Wicklow at the funeral of her grandmother Zee. Wicklow is a small town where everybody knows everybody elses' business. Due to her grandmother's will, Anna is forced to live in Wicklow for two months and run her cafe. The locals are drawn to the cafe because of the pie which is said to make a person her the voices of their deceased loved ones in their dreams and to see a flock of blackbirds which return every night at midnight to sing their song. Seriously! Can this be true? Anna struggles with the blackberry pie recipe because one of the regulars keeps telling her that it's not quite right. I'm not sure if Anna believes it or not, but she keeps on trying to perfect the recipe and with the help of a newfound friend, she is able to. Anna is the granddaughter of Zee and the daughter of Eden who left town to never return after the death of her fiance. Eden was blamed by her fiance's parents for his death so she left town before anyone even knew she was pregnant. Of course people are curious to get to know her. She is a newbie in a small town and she has a connection to people who have lived in the town their entire lives. We are quickly introduced to a whole cast of loveable characters (both people and animals) as they all try to catch a glimpse of the mysterious Anna Kate. Eden, Anna's mother, has passed four years ago and Anna has no family left whatsoever, except for her father's parents whom she has never met. Due to the circumstances surrounding her mother's decision to leave town, Anna is reluctant to get to know them at all. She holds a deep grudge against them and they against her, so Anna is shocked when she begins to receive frequent visits from Doc (her grandfather). Why would he possibly want to get to know her when he blames her mother for his son's death? This book is told through the points of view of Anna Kate and Natalie who is the sister of Anna's deceased father. We are also able to view the story through third person narration at times. The way the story comes together is delightful! This is a story about forgiveness, love, change, and following your dreams, all wrapped up with a little bit of magic! I loved it from beginning to end and would love to read another book by Heather Webber. Thank you to Bookishfirst and Forge Books for the ARC!
SharSam 10 days ago
Brilliant, witty, mystical, heartfelt. Beautiful story about family history, bonds, and neighborhood relationships. The writing style's intriguing, dropping slight hints throughout the text about the real reason for the blackbird cafe, and the family history behind it. Very unique story telling, I love the blackbird concept along with the bird nerds that try their best to find away to get a photograph of these one of kind bird. The pie doesn't actually have birds cooked into it, it's fruit. Beautiful trees weave there way into the story with the strange gifts the pie gives people when they eat a piece. The power of nature and how we connect with it demonstrates healing qualities hidden by most people. Wonderful story, excellent writing style, funny at times, this is a great feel good read.
OneThriftyReader 11 days ago
This is a novel about mother-daughter relationships set in a small southern town shot full of magical realism. The blackbirds in the book are the ancestors of Anna Kate Callow, whose family of Celtic women are healers. Every night at midnight, her ancestors come through the tunnel between the land of the dead and the living world as blackbirds and perch in the mulberry trees in the backyard of her grandmother Zee's Alabama home. If a person has eaten a piece of blackbird pie (actually fruit pie) made by someone in Anna Kate's family that day, the songs the blackbirds sing between midnight and one a.m. will show up as a message from a dead loved one in that persons dreams. As the book opens, Zee has died unexpectedly and Anna Kate has arrived in Wicklow, Alabama for the first time to settle her grandmother's estate. Under the terms of the will, she must stay and run her grandmother's Blackbird Café for two months before she can sell it. During that two months, both she and another young woman her age will struggle with the expectations of their forceful mothers and come to grips with how to balance the promises they have made to their families and their own desires for their lives. Recommended.
catherine_earnshaw 12 days ago
I love all of Heather Webber’s books and Midnight at the Blackbird Café is another wonderful story for me to love. This is an uplifting story of family, healing, and forgiveness. It was really hard to put down this book, because I wanted to keep learning more about all of the characters. The book takes place the small town of Wicklow and tells the story of two women who have recently arrived. Anna Kate came to Wicklow for a brief time due to her grandmother’s passing and she is required to spend sixty days running The Blackbird Café in order to receive her inheritance. Natalie has returned to Wicklow to put her life back together after the death of her husband. Soon, Anna Kate and Natalie’s lives intertwine. You will love the people who live in Wicklow and how they support both women as they navigate through learning the truth about the tragedy that binds them together.
Anonymous 17 days ago
Midnight at the Blackbird Cafe is such a great story! I only wish I could give it more than 5 stars because I feel it deserves so much more. One thing that I really liked about it was that it had a touch of magical realism to the storyline that I thought made it a fun read. It’s a story that takes place in Wicklow, Alabama, which is a small town with a lot of southern charm. The characters are all fun loving, friendly people with their own unique personalities. I would love to live in a town with these people for my friends and neighbors. The storyline is filled with little tidbits of life lessons and quirky little sayings. It’s a story of family, learning to forgive, and finding where you belong, finding home. Reading this made me feel happy. I think this book is a real treasure and I’m thankful that I got a copy to read. Although this was my first time reading a book by author Heather Webber, it most definitely will not be the last!
medwards429 18 days ago
20+ 4 Blackbirds in a Pie ... Thank you to Bookish First for providing me a copy of this book to review. This review is not in any way influenced by the author or publisher. “Midnight at the Blackbird Café” is a magical realism, heartwarming romance, and small-town Southern charm book. The main character Anna Kate; returns to Wicklow, Alabama for the first time since she was a child. She there only long enough to run the café long enough to collect from her grandmother’s estate before closing the famous Blackbird Café – famous for the Blackbird Pie, a pie with mystical connections. It’s said that if you eat a piece of the pie, you’ll hear a message from a deceased loved one in their song. Most of the townsfolk believe it. And, most have experienced it. Anna Kate is also interested in her past and why her mother left Wicklow before Anna Kate was born. Then there is Natalie who has returned with her own heartache as well. Not only the loss of her older brother but her husband. Both women share an interesting connection. But, Anna Kate wants to avoid her estranged family based on how they treated her mother after an accident. There are also the birdwatchers who are intrigued by the blackbirds and what is going on with them. The more Anna Kate tries to think about leaving, the more she is drawn to the town. She’s also drawn to healing – not just as a doctor, but with her cooking. Anna Kate also learns more about her heritage and the accident that claimed her father’s life. She also grows closer to the family she grew up despising. As she grows closer to the people in the town, she sees what is meant by Wicklow tends to take hold. And, as she contemplates her future – a tragedy will force her to reconsider what she wants as opposed to promises made. This was a delightful and fun read. I do wish that there had been a recipe for the Blackbird Pie in the book as it sounded wonderful. This is a wonderful story that can double as a romance.
Anonymous 19 days ago
Didn't want it to end
EmMaxwell 21 days ago
What a treasure for readers who love books about magical food. (Yes, it's a genre!) Heather Webber brings us a tale of broken hearts and broken families, magical birds and pies, and the healing power of love. In the town of Wicklow, Alabama, blackbirds sing at midnight in the backyard of the Blackbird Café. They are a part of Anna Kate’s heritage, but she doesn’t know that much about it—she’s had only snatches of time with her grandma, and never in Wicklow. Anna Kate’s mom left when she was pregnant with Anna Kate, and never set foot in the town again. She died, and now so has Anna Kate’s grandma; Anna Kate has to run her family heritage, the Blackbird Café, through the summer. Her grandma hoped that time would be enough to reveal all. And it is. Family secrets and scandals, birding groups, lost souls, and small town kindnesses all have their turn in the spotlight. And of course there’s a love story or two. Will definitely appeal to fans of Sarah Addison Allen with its stubborn charm. There aren’t blackbirds in the pie, just blackberries, by the way. The Blackbird Café gets its name from those European blackbirds that sing at midnight in the backyard. Even though European blackbirds aren’t nocturnal, or native to the Americas. I’ll leave you to discover their special magic and meaning. Webber delivers a story that’s as sweet and satisfying as pie, with room for magical sequels.
Vhardman318 24 days ago
Heather Webber has written has written a beautiful story of loss, betrayal, forgiveness, love and friendship. Within this story there are many layers to the wonderfully developed characters where you come to find the true meaning of family and where home, legacy and love lives. Wicklow AL has a way of taking hold of you once you visit. The Blackbird Cafe is the heart of Wicklow. This story and people in this book work their way and weave themselves into your heart and mind just the way Wicklow does to the people in the story. Heather Webber has built a story that will stay with you long after you finish reading it and will leave you wanting to know more about the people In Wicklow and how their lives turn out. Wicklow is place you want to stay! This is a new to me author and I absolutely loved it! I can’t wait to read more from Heather Webber. I highly recommend this book!
RaeOH 25 days ago
A lovely story that is both magical and sweet. It's perfect for summer although any time of year is fine. The story is of family, finding self, answering questions and just life. Added in are bits of magic involving Blackbirds and it requires some suspended belif but in a gentle, friendly way. The characters are the type you would want to meet and know. Well, at least by the end of the story. Most are great from the beginning. The setting is a small town, revolving around a cafe and it's owners present and past. Lots of love, care and healing goes on to those associated with it. This is the first book I've read by this author and I enjoyed her writing style and story. I plan to look into her other books. Highly recommend for those looking for a nice getaway and a feel good feeling.
bunkielisa 26 days ago
Anna Kate has come back to her mother's hometown of Wicklow, Alabama to bury her grandmother and settle the estate. Granny Zee owned the Blackbird Cafe, and her will requires that Anna Kate stay in Wicklow and run it for two months. Anna Kate thinks she'll do what the will calls for, sell the cafe, and return to Boston to pursue her plans for medical school. Wicklow and the blackbirds have other ideas. This story is positively radiant. It calls to mind the writing of Sarah Addison Allen. There are magical elements - the blackbirds being a bridge between the living and the dead, bringing messages to those who eat a slice of Blackbird Pie - but the characters are what make the story sing. I grew up in a small southern town, and these all feel like people I know. The grumpy old gentleman, the talkative town know-it-all, the haughty Southern matriarch, the loner who keeps to himself but has hidden depths. They are real and relatable and make this book one that is hard to put down. The book has so much to offer. Magic, mystery, romance. But most of all, it's about relationships - what it takes to create them and keep them, and how to heal them when a past kept hidden has broken them. The story sounds so intriguing, my husband wants to read it, and this is usually not his thing at all. Give it a read. You won't be sorry, and if you're like me, you'll hate to see the book end. Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of the book from BookishFirst. All opinions here are mine, and I don't say nice things about books I don't like.
katherine schmitt 26 days ago
I love this book. I adore the magic realism and got hooked right away. This story is lovely, about forgiveness, family and new beginnings. There is just so much love in this book, just like the Café’s pies. This story is about a woman, Anna Kate, who is bound for medical school in Boston. Then, Anna Kate's grandmother Zee passed away and left her the Blackbird Café in Wicklow, Alabama. A stipulation of the will is that Anna Kate remains in Wicklow running the café for two months before truly inheriting it and being able to sell. I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a feel good story with so many other possibilities. The book is full of family, friendship, romance an so much more. I didn’t want this book to end, and I really hope the author plans to write more magical stories in Wicklow because there are so many wonderful stories left to tell.
Angie0184 27 days ago
Pretty magical book with a touch of the supernatural, forgiveness in spades, small town romance, and delicious pies. The story was cute and very fun to read, and Heather brought Anna Kaye and Natalie to life in a way that I agonized over their decisions with them. The only part I could have done without was the homeopathy. That's not medicine. Sure, you can soothe people with some of that stuff, and it has a great placebo affect, but much like vaccine deniers, it's not real medicine and people that push that stuff can do a lot of harm when people don't visit real doctors because of it. But, this was fiction, and it only made an appearance a few times, so, not that bad. Overall the book was great and I really liked the small town feel of it.
Katherinestamps 27 days ago
I love this book. I adore the magic realism and got hooked right away. This story is lovely, about forgiveness, family and new beginnings. There is just so much love in this book, just like the Café’s pies. I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a feel good story with so many other possibilities. I didn’t want this book to end, and I really hope the author plans to write more magical stories in Wicklow because there are so many wonderful stories left to tell.
SilversReviews 28 days ago
Can you really leave Wicklow once you have spent time there? Anna Kate came back for her grandmother's funeral and stayed in Wicklow because she was required to spend sixty days there to inherit The Blackbird Cafe. Anna's mother vowed to NEVER return to Wicklow, and Anna finds out why as the days pass. Was her mother wrong, though? The characters all seemed lovable and were folks you would want to have in your life except for a few of them. As you read, you will feel the warmth of the small town, but also the grudges that some characters can’t let go of. The blackbird legend was interesting, and the blackbird pies sounded yummy even though Anna was still trying to figure out the secret ingredient her grandmother would never reveal. Midnight in Wicklow was magical because of the legend of the blackbirds and what they did for those who ate the pie and heard them singing. MIDNIGHT AT THE BLACKBIRD CAFE was a cozy, nostalgic read that will have you wanting to be in that adorable, loving town and visiting The Blackbird Cafe. The book was also filled with secrets, characters with regrets, love, and characters who will steal your heart. If you need an uplifting read, be sure to put MIDNIGHT AT THE BLACKBIRD CAFE on your reading list. A truly enjoyable, sweet read that will have you examining your choices and have you reaching for the tissue box because of the hominess and love oozing from the pages. 5/5 This book was given to me as an ARC by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
sjillis 29 days ago
Anna Kate was summoned to Wicklow, Alabama by her grandmother Zee’s sudden death. She’s never visited her mother’s hometown, because when Eden left 25 years ago—accused of killing her boyfriend—she vowed never to return. Although Anna Kate plans to stay only the required 60 days so she can inherit Zee’s estate, she finds herself falling in love with the town, and with her attorney. And to her surprise, she finds she may be able to forgive her father’s family. Reminiscent of the work of Sarah Addison Allen, this novel is completely absorbing, impossible to put down. All the primary characters grow and mature—even the elderly ones. I suspect Wicklow is fictional, which is sad, because I’d love to visit.