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Solomon's Oak (Solomon's Oak #1)

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3.74  ·  Rating Details  ·  2,021 Ratings  ·  351 Reviews
Glory Solomon, a young widow, holds tight to her memories while she struggles to hold on to her Central California farm. She makes ends meet by hosting weddings in the chapel her husband had built under their two-hundred-year-old white oak tree, known locally as Solomon's Oak.

Fourteen-year-old Juniper McGuire is the lone survivor of a family decimated by her sister's disa
...more
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Published October 12th 2010 by Tantor Media (first published January 1st 2010)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Laurel-Rain
Dec 02, 2010 Laurel-Rain rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Against the backdrop of a gorgeous Central California Coastal town, this story begins with an historic moment in the past: a man, his wife, and his daughter are set to partake of the golden riches of the new land when tragedy strikes in the form of a swollen Nacimiento River.

From there we open on another world, in another century, and a woman named Glory Solomon, whose life and joy have centered on this land and near this huge white oak tree named Solomon's Oak. Here she had shared a wonderful t
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Denise
Oct 21, 2010 Denise rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another beautiful book from Jo-Ann Mapson! Solomon's Oak is an ancient white oak, growing in California, where no white oak should be able to grow. When Glory Solomon is widowed at an early age she unwittingly becomes its caretaker. Her new foster daughter, Juniper, arrives just as Glory is hosting her first wedding in the chapel her husband built under its branches. Close on Juniper's heels comes Joesph, an injured cop who is there to photograph the famous tree. Together, the three of them will ...more
Petunia
Aug 23, 2011 Petunia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mapson is an author I turn to like comfort food when I get tired of rich fare. Her chaaracters are real people with flaws, ones you can love and appreciate.

In Solomon's Oak, Glory is a grieving widow whose's part-time job at Target might provide just enough money to get by--if she didn't take in strays. Glory and her husband of ten years had fostered teenaged boys, whome they loved and sent on their way better prepared for life. She also fosters dogs, that she loves and trains for a permanent h
...more
Diana
Aug 26, 2014 Diana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jo-Ann Mapson is one of my favorite authors.
The plot of this book was slow to develop, but once it got started it was another great story.
Glory Solomon is a recent widow. She and her husband had ran a small farm and raised foster boys, among other things. In one of their meadows is a big, old, beautiful oak tre...Solomon's oak. Glory's husband had built a small chapel before he died. Someone asks if they have their wedding there and thus begins a new business for Glory. During the first wedd
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Carol
Feb 17, 2012 Carol rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A book about famliy dynamics and the forming of new relationships. The theme of abuse and abduction of children nearly hit the limit of my comfort level, but I did manage to finish the book.
Also need the authors recipe for twice-baked potato casserole!
Charlene
Jul 28, 2012 Charlene rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
loved this book. I couldn't put it down ..well written, realistic ending, very engaging. I stayed up late to read it and got ul early to read it. looking forward to reading more from this author
Kirsten Feldman
Mar 29, 2014 Kirsten Feldman rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Solomon's Oak in three lines. Jo-Ann Mapson beautifully, if slowly and often predictably, maps the spaces between Glory, a recent, struggling widow, and Juniper, her happenstance foster daughter, as deftly as she fills out their piecemeal lives on a California ranch. The titular tree, which shouldn't even grow in that part of the country, never mind for over two hundred years, anchors the story that undulates around it, collecting oddball and stalwart characters as treasures and trash catch in i ...more
Shannon
Oct 24, 2014 Shannon rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bookshelf
Original review found at: http://awesomebooknuts.blogspot.com/

SPOILERS
I enjoyed reading this book, but I thought I would enjoy it more. It is an easy, well written novel that follows the lives of three individuals whose lives intertwine in interesting ways.

Glory Solomon is a widow coming up on the first anniversary of her late husband’s death. She is asked by a couple if they can have their wedding at the chapel that her husband finished building shortly before his death. She accepts after she d
...more
Denise
Jun 05, 2012 Denise rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really found Jo-Ann Mapson's book Solomon's Oak to be a great read. The characters are wonderfully developed and the struggles rang true. Glory is struggling through her first year as a widow and adjusting to her new realities and trying to start a new business. She becomes a sole foster mother, a role she has extensive experience in while she was married but this time the child is a girl and she is going it alone. Juniper, the foster child has a voice that rings true for children who have see ...more
Grace
Mar 23, 2011 Grace rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Liked the characters - a new widow, a foster child, a retired policeman - great relationships.

Glory Solomon, a young widow, holds tight to her memories while she struggles to hold on to her Central California farm. Fourteen-year-old Juniper McGuire is the lone survivor of a family decimated by her sister's disappearance. She arrives on Glory's doorstep, pierced, tattooed, angry, and homeless. When Glory's husband Dan was alive, they took in foster children, but Juniper may be more than she can
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Donna
Oct 21, 2013 Donna rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book. First of all, I fell in love with the idea of Solomon's Oak being a tree that was not expected to live, let alone flourish for hundreds of years in their area. I absolutely adored the character of Glory Solomon since, like me, shoe loves animals. She has three dogs who she rescued and has trained to help her out on the farm. She also has s couple of horses. She is grieving the loss of her husband of twenty years. Now she wishes that they had children of their own in a ...more
Regina Spiker
Solomon's Oak - the words alone invoke strength and character...photographers come from miles away to capture the beauty of the lovely, huge White oak that sits on Solomon's farm in California, where White Oaks should never grow. Glory Solomon, now a widow, owns the farm where once her and her beloved husband took in foster boys and taught them to be kind, responsible men. Now alone with only her horses and dogs, Glory is faced with the dilemma of possibly losing the farm. On top of all this wor ...more
Anne
Jul 25, 2012 Anne rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I finished reading Solomon's Oak this evening, and on the whole I did enjoy the story. The story is pretty slow to start, with a gentle introduction to each character, and although the pace never becomes particularly fast, the characters develop wonderfully.

Although recommended by Jodi Picoult, Jo-Ann Mapson's writing and style is really not similar to Picoult at all. This didn't put me off, but some readers may be looking for a similar genre and be disappointed.

The three main characters; Glor
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Laura Wilson
Apr 16, 2016 Laura Wilson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is such an enjoyable, gentle, moving read. I fell in love with the characters and discovered that even though there were moments the story dragged a bit for me, I wasn't ready for their journey to be over when it was. This was my first time reading Jo-Ann Mapson, and I now want to check out other books she has written.
Kay
Mar 25, 2011 Kay rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: literary-fiction
The characters were wonderful--almost too good to be true. And the plot was compelling, though there were probably too many coincidences, such as the fact that the heroine becomes the foster mother to the sister of a missing person whose dog lives at Solomon's Oak. And how did she become a foster mother without going through months of red tape, especially in California?
I have enjoyed other books by this author, but somehow the writing wasn't quite good enough to rate 4 stars. It had a thrown-tog
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Lynn Pribus
A Hallmark-ish book with few surprises and unexciting writing. I was tempted to quit, but there was a cattle dog in it and I'm a cattle dog fan. A 15-y-o girl whose sister disappeared (while with said dog) some years ago is placed with a widow (of 8-9 months) who fostered boys while her husband was living.

She herself has an antagonistic relationship with her own sister and I was constantly annoyed that, although she kept the needy girl, she was terribly inept handling her. She never once agreed
...more
Mich
Aug 05, 2015 Mich rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Well worth the read. I've had this for a long time, don't know why it took me so long to read it!
Sharon
2.5 stars
A struggling young widow, an abandoned and angry teenager, and a former police officer who is losing his battle with his physical and emotional pain find that their lives have become entwined as each seeks to heal themselves and find some peace.
This story had a great premise and a lot of potential, but it was mostly unmet. The plot seemed a little disjointed, the narrative often seemed stilted and characters not fully realized. There was just something missing, and I found myself turni
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Carol Moore
Solomon’s Oak *** Jo-Ann Mapson
not my words:
“Solomon's Oak is the story of three people who have suffered losses that changed their lives forever.
Glory Solomon, a young widow, holds tight to her memories while she struggles to hold on to her Central California farm. She makes ends meet by hosting weddings in the chapel her husband had built under their two-hundred-year-old white oak tree, known locally as Solomon's Oak. Fourteen-year-old Juniper McGuire is the lone survivor of a family decimat
...more
Rebecca
Feb 01, 2016 Rebecca rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio-books
I thought this book was simply okay. I wasn't sure what to expect when I first started reading, but I was intrigued by the synopsis and decided to give it a chance. The beginning started off on an unexpectedly religious note and the story felt like something from the Christian Fiction genre. But as the story developed, it took on a different tone and became more about the interpersonal relationships of the story's 3 main characters with a few different ideas of faith woven in but no longer the m ...more
Ed Goddard
Apr 21, 2016 Ed Goddard rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Most excellent book. Good character portrayal. I would rate this a 6 out of 5 if that was possible.
Margaret
Carefully drawn, compelling main characters, and especially sensitive descriptions of the farm's animals, as well as the natural beauty of the area. The essence of the plot is strong, but the ending is a bit too tidy and predictable. (Another book that benefits in the telling from slow exposition, then tries to sweep everything up into a tidy conclusion in a single sweeping chapter.)

The treatment of Glory's grief seems more even-handed and realistic than the tremendous burdens Juniper bears, an
...more
Lucia
Oct 27, 2012 Lucia rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
It was an enjoyable book, except for the lame use of Spanish all over the book. The Spanish that many of the characters used in between their sentences was wrong. I don't mean that it wasn't proper Spanish, I mean that it was painfully obvious that the author AND the editors had no knowledge whatsoever of Spanish. This made the reading very annoying for me, being bilingual.
Jan Priddy
Dec 19, 2014 Jan Priddy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am not much of a fan of novels like this one. That said, I enjoyed it very much. SOLOMON'S OAK by Jo-Ann Mapson (Bloomsbury, 2010) offers a lot of information, truth, and hope. I am not the intended reader, but I'm happy to have read it. A young girl has had a hard life by age 14, harder than a child's life should be. I suppose I know a little something of that, at least from the outside, as a high school teacher for most of my adult life. Many of my students have already suffered more hardshi ...more
Rebecca
Jul 15, 2013 Rebecca rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this book told from three varying perspectives, a young widow, and ex-cop photographer, and an abandoned teenager. It's a touching, but not sappy, story of how their lives became intertwined and move toward healing. I'd give it 4 1/2 stars if I could.
Linden
Jul 20, 2015 Linden rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Adult readers
Recommended to Linden by: An Indiebound Pick

Glory Solomon's life had changed dramatically almost a year ago when her beloved husband died suddenly. It left her owning a farm (with dogs, sheep, goats, chickens and horses) and little income--and a struggle on two fronts--dealing with her loss, and finding paying work. She stumbles on the idea of renting out a building constructed by her husband when a man begs her to host his wedding, which had been turned down at all other local venues because of its pirate theme.

Two people enter her life
...more
Ann Miller
Sep 09, 2013 Ann Miller rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The story and writing are deep, true, and beautiful--moving at a glacial pace. An excellent read for the savoring reader. Juniper as the broken teen especially shines.
Chris
Apr 13, 2014 Chris rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Really enjoyed this book. The location was familiar and one I love (Central California). There were dog characters and dog rescue. A rescue Pit Bull named "Roadie" also makes an appearance on page 60. Loved the paragraph that used lyrics from "Trees" by Rush. The use of trees and New Mexico added to the story. And the insight into photography and the use of it as almost a character itself in the book, really added to the story for me. "That's why when you go to take a photograph the first thing ...more
Gayle
May 13, 2014 Gayle rated it really liked it
I enjoyed Solomon's Oak. If you've ever experienced loss in your life, you'll be able to connect with Mapson's characters at some level.

This is a slow-paced, well-developed story of three people whose lives come together and grow warm and tender like fruit kissed by the sun. All have experienced loss and are in various stages of grief. Anger and pain come and go, but their relationships develop despite their loss.

Though there was a good amount of predictability in the story, the way in which th
...more
Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews
"The chapel had been Dan's final project. One summer morning over his oatmeal he'd said, "I've got a bug to build myself a chapel. Nothing fancy, just a place to worship out of the rain." Page 9

Thanksgiving day, the oldest white oak tree on the Solomon property, a chapel built by Dan Solomon, a wedding, and now a foster child dealing with grief just like Glory Solomon.

Glory had to do something since Dan died...her savings was gone, and her part-time job didn't really pay the bills.

One day she wa
...more
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Jo-Ann Mapson, a third generation Californian, grew up in Fullerton as a middle child with four siblings. She dropped out of college to marry, but later finished a creative writing degree at California State University, Long Beach. Following her son's birth in 1978, Mapson worked an assortment of odd jobs teaching horseback riding, cleaning houses, typing resumes, and working retail. After earning ...more
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