Monday, April 4, 2022

Review: Scarlet Carnation by Laila Ibrahim

Scarlet Carnation
by Laila Ibrahim

Publisher: Lake Union Publishing
Pages: 314
Format: ARC
Buy the Book: Amazon

Goodreads:  1915. May and Naomi are extended family, their grandmothers’ lives inseparably entwined on a Virginia plantation in the volatile time leading up to the Civil War. For both women, the twentieth century promises social transformation and equal opportunity.

May, a young white woman, is on the brink of achieving the independent life she’s dreamed of since childhood. Naomi, a nurse, mother, and leader of the NAACP, has fulfilled her own dearest desire: buying a home for her family. But they both are about to learn that dreams can be destroyed in an instant. May’s future is upended, and she is forced to rely once again on her mother. Meanwhile, the white-majority neighborhood into which Naomi has moved is organizing against her while her sons are away fighting for their country.

In the tumult of a changing nation, these two women—whose grandmothers survived the Civil War—support each other’s quest for liberation and dignity. Both find the strength to confront injustice and the faith to thrive on their chosen paths.

Kritters Thoughts: Naomi and May come from the same lineage, but have very different life experiences, partly because of their skin color and the basic opportunities that come with that.  May is a young white woman who thinks that she is on the cusp of her life coming together and all of her dreams being met.  Naomi is a mother of grown children and a leader of the NAACP she is fighting each day for the rights that her community should have at this moment in time.  

While I loved both of these women dearly in this book and I loved their stories that were taking place in this moment in time which gave the story even more depth.  I wish there had been more interaction between the two main characters throughout the book.  I was enjoying their individual stories, but I also wanted them to interact as it felt weird to have their stories in the same book and not have them weave in and out of each other's lives.  

While each woman had a lot going on, it didn't feel like too much drama in the book.  I have had a few of Laila Ibrahim's books on my radar, but this was my first read and I hope to catch up on her backlist and also anticipate what comes next.  

Rating: enjoyable, but didn't leave me wanting more

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from Wunderkind PR.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

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