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Blackberries in the Dark

3.58  ·  Rating Details  ·  52 Ratings  ·  14 Reviews
"Austin's visit to his grandmother's is the first since Grandpa died. Austin notices Grandpa's things but feels the emptiness of his absence. This spare story vividly captures the emotions of painful times and shows how they ease with sharing and remembering. Boy and grandfather were close, but boy and grandmother seem destined to be just as close, with Grandpa's memory to ...more
Library Binding, 48 pages
Published July 9th 2002 by Random House Children's Books (first published 1985)
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Kristen Reyes
Apr 20, 2016 Kristen Reyes rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
How accurate are representations of language, culture, setting, and relationships?
The story depicts a family: grandson, grandfather, and grandmother. The relationship between the three characters seems rocky at first because the story begins with news that the grandfather had passed away. There is tension and bottled up emotions from the young boy at first. The setting seems to be in a rural town with a shed and river nearby the boy's grandparents house.

• Are characters fully realized and shown
This is a book my school has in its leveled library. I picked it up for the first time a few years ago to read with a guided reading group. I liked it enough so pulled it out again this year.

Austin enjoys visiting his grandparents during summer vacation. His grandfather and he fish. Grandfather has promised to teach him how to fly fish this coming summer. In the interim, grandfather died. Austin still visits his grandmother. She has cleared out grandfather's things, which saddens the boy. She gi
This is a touching story about a boy's visit to his grandmother for the summer. It's the first summer after his grandfather has passed away. The boy and the grandfather had shared special times fishing, and it's tough to face the summer without him. But as the grandmother and boy share an experience learning to fly fish together and picking blackberries the healing begins for both of them. Kids that enjoy fishing will probably relate well to this story, but it's a good story for everyone.
Books Kids Like
Oct 06, 2013 Books Kids Like rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: jukes-mavis
When Austin visited his grandparents in the past, his grandfather would take him fishing. It became a tradition to eat blackberries in the dark because they would always fish after dinner. Now Austin's grandfather is dead, and Austin is reluctant to go for his annual summer visit. Grandma tries to make him comfortable. She offers to make a blackberry pie for dinner if Austin picks the berries. While he is down by the river's edge, Grandma appears dressed in Grandpa's fishing gear. Together they ...more
Oct 19, 2014 Vanessa rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children-s-books
Another Book for Tom. Great story of how a grandson and Grandmother help each other through the grief of Grandpa's death. Good fishing/blackberry hunting tale.
Feb 04, 2014 Rebekah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What a heartwarming book about grief and bereavement. I really enjoyed it.
Judi Paradis
Austin has always spent his summer vacation at his grandparent's farm. His grandfather taught him to fish, to ride a tractor, and to pick blackberries in the dark. This year is going to be different though--his grandfather died in the spring, and Austin and his grandmother have to figure out how to go on together without the person they both miss most. This story is slow, but satisfying. A good choice for kids who like realistic fiction and want to see how someone lives through a difficult situa ...more
May 07, 2010 Beth rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was doing bus duty the other morning and a bus driver handed me a copy of this book that had been found on the bus. I had it half done before all the buses had arrived. it is a very early chapter book. The story tells of a young boy who has loved visiting his grandparents on their farm each summer. Grandfather has now died and he has reservations about going back to visit without him there. It is nicely done as it weaves Austin's memories of Grandfather in to his new relationship with Grandmot ...more
Sep 12, 2008 Duane rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Austin is spending his first summer at his grandparents place after losing his grandpa. Him and his grandmother help each other overcome the loss that tugs at both of their hearts. This is a short book with illustrations so a beginner reader should have no problems enjoying this book.
A heartwarming story of a boy coming to terms with the death of his beloved grandfather. It feels a little dated, but there is always a need for these kinds of stories, to open conversation with kids who are hurting.
Sep 13, 2011 Theresa rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: review
the grief of visiting grandma the summer after grandpa died
Mar 17, 2011 Juliet rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bentley-bookfest
Was just really boring
Oct 25, 2007 Anaudy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Good book
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Mavis Jukes (born May 3, 1947 in Nyack, New York), is an American author of novels for children. She has also published nonfiction books for children and pre-teens about puberty. Her books are usually health-based.

Before becoming an author, Jukes was a lawyer and a teacher. Her first book, No One is Going to Nashville, was published in 1983. She lives with her husband, the sculptor and painter Rob
More about Mavis Jukes...

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