Wednesday, June 04, 2014

Review: Goodnight June by Sarah Jio

Title: Goodnight June
Author: Sarah Jio
Genre: Historical/Contemporary Fiction
Publication Date: 27th May 2014
Pages: 320
Book Source: Penguin Group Plume & NetGalley

Synopsis: Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown (Goodnight Songs) is an adored childhood classic, but its real origins are lost to history. In Goodnight June, Sarah Jio offers a suspenseful and heartfelt take on how the “great green room” might have come to be.

June Andersen is professionally successful, but her personal life is marred by unhappiness. Unexpectedly, she is called to settle her great-aunt Ruby’s estate and determine the fate of Bluebird Books, the children’s bookstore Ruby founded in the 1940s. Amidst the store’s papers, June stumbles upon letters between her great-aunt and the late Margaret Wise Brown—and steps into the pages of American literature.

My Thoughts: 
I loved The Bungalow Morning Glory but with Goodnight June Sarah Jio catapults straight onto my favourite author list. As a book lover and unabashed re-reader of childhood favourites, I adored Goodnight June.  

June inherits Bluebird Books after the death of her great aunt Ruby and it was that quaint bookstore, holding so much history, memories and secrets that held me captivated. Then June discovers the letters of friendship and support between Ruby and Brownie (children's author Margaret Wise Brown) and I was mesmerised ... what a joy to read, sincere and heartwarming. 

Sarah Jio blends the past and present seamlessly with these letters and I had a hard time remembering that it was in fact, fiction ... that the origin and inspiration for Goodnight Moon was a wonderful imagining. 

Goodnight Moon is a childhood classic near and dear to my heart, not so much for the story now but the memories it evokes. Read to me by my mum, the soothing rhythm, bunny's bedtime routine and effort to delay sleep holds universal appeal, and I have my mum's  old copy which makes it extra special. 

It took me a while to warm to June, hardened by her profession and success, but as she reevaluated her life and realised the importance of family and forgiveness she won me over. And all that professional knowledge proved useful in her fight to save her bookstore from foreclosure. I think I fell in love with Italian restaurant owner Gavin before June did ... he makes a  pasta for every occasion and emotion ... what's not to love?? 

Goodnight June is a little bit romantic and a whole lot of love, it's warm and comforting and couldn't have come at a more perfect time in my life. Slipping into its pages was time spent in Bluebird Books, which felt like coming home. 

and PS seeing it coming didn't lessen my enjoyment of the story ... not one little bit. 

I rarely reread books unless they're children's books but Goodnight June will be one I will, time and again. It's a keeper on my bookshelf and earns a special place in my heart. 

Connect with Sarah Jio





23 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Favourite this year Julie, you would love it!!!

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  2. Fantastic review, and the best review I've read about this book. I felt the same way when I read it and adored it. It was my favorite book read last month and may be my favorite book for awhile. I just felt so content and happy reading it because it was so good. Lovely review and so glad to see someone else who loved it as much as I did.

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    1. Thanks so much Brandie, when you love a book you want everyone to love it just as much as you do. I'm coming by to check out your review :)

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  3. Agree, it was a great read and what a great review you give it. I actually do not remember Goodnight Moon but I do remember some of her others and did love them.

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    1. Thanks Kathryn, glad you loved it too. I've also got some of MWB's golden books, cute stories to pass on to my new grandchild.

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  4. Thanks for your great review. I've seen this book on blogs a lot lately and just added it to my 'To Read' list.

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    1. Yay Pat, I'll keep an eye out for your thoughts.

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  5. I read Goodnight Moon to all of my children, and it was a favorite or maybe as you said, it is the memories it evokes. I can smell my children's freshly bathed hair, see them dressed in their pajamas and curled in my lap. Goodnight June sounds delightful Teddylee, I want to spend time in the Italian restaurant and get to know Gavin.

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    1. that's exactly what I meant ... aren't those memories just precious! I want Gavin to cook me pasta ;)

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  6. I haven't heard of this book or the author, but your review definitely has me curious! And confession, I've never read Goodnight Moon so I feel a bit out of place ;) This sounds like a great read though, and I love the sound of a warm, comforting book.

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    1. this is a book for all book lovers Alise, I hope you pick up a copy and fall in love

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  7. Replies
    1. this is a booklover's dream book Sheila, hope you pick up a copy.

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  8. Ok then. This title is going on my buy list! Loved your review.

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    1. Thanks Mary, I can't wait to hear if you love it as much as I did!

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  9. A 5 from you makes this definitely a book to read. I don't recall Goodnight Moon so I'm keen to look for this story because I'm sure my daughter would love it.

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    1. Goodnight Moon is sweet and a little silly but I have such fond memories of it. I'd be really surprised if you didn't love Goodnight June ... let me know :)

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  10. Stop writing such good reviews. This book sounds delightful. I will keep my eye open for it.

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    1. LOL Mandy, I love being an enabler ;)

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  11. I have this book on Sparky....and I'm planning to read it next week! Unless I toss aside my review books and grab it now...I do love this author and this one sounds like a winner. I'm drooling at the image of Gavin's pasta! Thanks, Teddyree!

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