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3.81  ·  Rating details ·  259 ratings  ·  65 reviews
"To the medical world, I was a host body, surviving only to bring a new life into the world. And while I wanted to die more than anything in the world, I never wanted this. No, I never wanted to cease to exist. This was the worst death of all.”

Jude Black lives in that in-between, twilight place teetering on death but clinging to life in order to bring her baby into this
Paperback, 298 pages
Published October 1st 2012 by Lenore Skomal Press (first published September 3rd 2012)
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Average rating 3.81  · 
Rating details
 ·  259 ratings  ·  65 reviews

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 Reading Divergence
Sep 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Reading Divergence by: Full Moon Bites Blog Tours
Blog Tour Stop Oct, 3

Review of The Bluff
Reviewed for Full Moon Bites Blog Tours Oct. 3 2012

An inescapable reader’s hook immediately yanks the reader into this fast-paced, engrossing novel, never letting go. While we ponder the unfolding story of Jude, from both within and without, we read with heart-in-mouth and pulse pounding, demanding answers to the questions: What happened? Why? Who was involved? What about her condition of pregnancy? Who will win the role of health advocate for Jude? Will
Pooja (On books!)
Dec 08, 2012 rated it really liked it
Review originally posted here:

Intricate. Compelling. Powerful; three words I'd use to describe Bluff which opens with the words: I was born a weakling.

Bluff weaves together the story of Jude, named after the patron saint of the same name, who is found fallen off a bluff and will indefinitely remain in a "persistive vegetative state". She is also carrying a child whose chances of being delivered without risk are high... further complicating the situation.

Sep 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviewed
I received a copy of this book from the author for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review, and all conclusions are my own responsibility.

I’m rather at a loss for words to accurately review this book: for I’m not entirely certain I’ve discovered all of the ways it makes an impact. It is a roller coaster ride from one peak in the revelations to the next, climaxing with the impact of that last big climb – slowly up until it crests and drops the bottom out from under you.

Sep 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
"Mighty 'Bluff' offers a stunning view of life and death"

In her author's profile, Lenore Skomal says she wants you to "eat her books," and gobble I surely did as I read her latest book, Bluff. This intriguing novel will keep you on the edge until the very last sentence. Skomal is a master at the cliff-hanger (or shall I say, bluff-hanger?) -- I finished each chapter only to be left begging for the next. Word to the wise: Don't deprive yourself of the thrill of getting to the end by skipping
Tee loves Kyle Jacobson
Oct 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2012-must-reads
I would like to give Full Moon Bites a huge THANK YOU for allowing me to be a part of this tour. I have to say that I have never read a book that has taken my breath away like Bluff did. It causes you to look at an issue that is a controversy no matter how you look at it. Death and dying is a heated debate that will last as long as man kind is living and breathing.

Who has the right to decide when a person dies? Who has the right to chose whether or not they will stay on life support or pull the
Oct 01, 2012 rated it it was amazing
It was sure hard to get anything done in my real life once I picked this book up. I kept thinking, "one more chapter" and I will...(clean house, get dressed, turn off the light, you name it). It completely kept my attention. The plot focuses on Jude, a gay single woman who is in a coma as a result of falling off the cliff near her home. How did that happen? Who was Jude? How does this accident impact her best friend? her lawyer? her nurse? I was hooked immediately on the concept of Jude telling ...more
Dec 10, 2012 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Everyone
I just finished reading this book and I'm...what...spellbound?..startled? No word seems to sum it up as per my expectations.

It is indeed a very different kind of book. Everything from the plot to the characters to the the writing is new and fresh.

It is not a book you can read, smile and put away. It is something that takes control of you, making you think and analyze. So if you love books that do that to you, you should pick this one up.

Right from the beginning to the very end, this book doesn't
Feb 20, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was interesting. The thing I didn't like about it was that there was very little storyline. Most of the book was background information on the characters, some of which was unnecessary, I thought. For instance, the secretary at Paul Williams' law office. Too much detail about her as she wasn't an important character at all. I wish there had been a little more action, but I guess that is hard to do when your main character is in a permanent vegetative state. I really did like the ...more
Lee Fullbright
Dec 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I LOVED this book! If I could give it 10 stars I would. It’s smart, it’s meaty, and it’s relevant. Another reviewer characterized it as an “issues” story … if it is, then I’m an “issues” kind of reader; I like stories that make me think. I also admire this book’s structure—Skomal had a lot to balance here and she did it with grace and panache and real feeling for her characters—I know she felt for them because she made me feel for them, too. Skomal is a writer to be reckoned with, and this a ...more
Gail Root
Sep 17, 2012 rated it it was amazing
COULD NOT PUT IT DOWN! Throughly enjoyed this book! The suspense just builds as each character is introduced. The mystery keeps unfolding as the characters are revealed. I loved it!
Oct 29, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I didn't manage to post a review during book club bash week, but since I was also signed up for a review during the Bluff tour, I decided I'd just make it a little more special in the holiday season.

I have been busy, but it's the holidays right? The truth is, I'd rather be writing, and at hibernating in my house. (Or where I house sit, because it is quite inspirational).

During the holidays for the past few years, I've house sat for a couple I know. They have a beautiful house, and its location
Faye {Daydreaming_Star}
Dec 20, 2012 rated it really liked it
A Daring Move
When I first read the synopsis for this book, I was instantly curious and I knew that it was a book I simply had to get my hands on. Now, after reading the book, I can say in complete honesty that I was so glad to have acted on my curiosity as this book was simply spectacular. It never shied away from anything, making sure that it went down and got into the nitty gritty of things, helping to make the book seem so much more realistic. It is books like these that really inspire
Cate Knox
Dec 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Damn. Yeah, that’s the first word that came to my mind when I finished this book. …And when I was in the middle of it. …And when I started it.

I honestly cannot begin to tell you how much I absolutely adore this book. The only thing I can possibly pick at is a few errors in grammar/punctuation, but they didn’t hinder my reading at all, and, truth be, I don’t even remember what the errors where, I just know I saw them! So… I have nothing to pick at. I have nothing bad to say about this book. On
Drennan Spitzer
Nov 20, 2012 rated it it was ok
In Bluff, Lenore Skomal tells the story of Jude, a pregnant woman who is in a "persistent vegetative state" after falling off a cliff. It is unclear whether this is an accident, foul play, or a suicide, but the decision is made to keep Jude on life support until her baby reaches full term. All indicators suggest that the fetus has been unharmed by Jude's accident, and Jude, although unresponsive is conscious of what's going on around her. In one way Jude, then, is treated as little more than a ...more
Nov 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing

Wow! I have to admit that Bluff was the best book I read in 2012. I know that I started a lot of reviews saying that the books were the best. But Bluff really hits the top spot. What you get when you pick up this book is nothing less than a slap in the face with a concept that will floor you, and a story filled with an amazing cast of intertwined characters.

This book is not an easy read by any means. It is real, gritty and honest. It combines a host of issues from child abuse and rape to medical
Dec 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
My first thought: I am going to recommend this to everyone, who can read emotional novels.
Second thought: Wait, I think I am going to cry. :(

The first reason I picked this up: BLURB. Read the above blurb. After reading that, I just can't pass this on. And like so many other books I accepted for review, I am glad again for my decision.

There are some things we consider as good and bad. But, that obviously differs from person to person. When I read about each of the characters in this book, it only
Nov 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
What happens when the breaking of the body is what heals the soul within?

The book is riddled with secrets and secret keepers. Some we find out about right away, some we find out only because Jude, the one person who never let anyone in on her own secrets before finally met her match, The Bluff… hears them from the trap of her own head. Some other’s know and others keep, it is a mess. At the center of this our author has put Jude into a vegetative state, basically a host for her unborn child.
Nov 09, 2012 rated it liked it
Bluff is an intriguing psychological tale that demonstrates how the people you think you know hide behind a façade of what you want to see. Jude Black has never let anyone get close to her. Aloof from society she lives her life content as a loner. Her only friend is Frances, a woman who appears to have the perfect life. She is happily married to a man who adores her; she lives in a beautiful home, drives a nice car, and essentially has everything you could wish for. Most of the people in town ...more
Nov 17, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2012
Jude is listening to everything going on around her. People are talking to her but she can't answer. Why because she is in a coma. She either fell, was pushed or jumped off bluff near her home. Now she floats around in a way outside her body listening to everything that is going on around her. The hospital is keeping her alive for one reason. She is pregnant and there is a chance to save her baby. They keep her living as long as they can in the hopes of saving the child. Jude is a lonesome ...more
Sep 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing
My review:

Bluff by Lenore Skomal is the most intriguing and complex book of the year 2012 for me! With that said, it was also the most difficult book to read in 2012. If you look for something which is easy and all positive, then here is my word of warning to you - do not read this book! If you are looking for something which is mysterious, deep, dark, fascinating, intelligent, touches many serious issues, then you will definitely love Bluff!

Bluff by Lenore Skomal was utterly well written and
Tyler-rose (The Reading Pile)
Dec 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: for-review
Review can be found at
actual rating; 4.5/5

Literally chapters from the end of the book, and cutting it close to my deadline, i'm writing an early review? Why? Because I feel I already can.

I've enjoyed Bluff because Lenore has a way of writing that makes what she's saying quite powerful. I've read a few chapters where some serious subjects have been discussed, but she handles them beautifully.

The character of Jude falls off a cliff into the bluff which
Nov 14, 2012 rated it really liked it
My Review:
The book up for review is “Bluff” by Lenore Skomal.

I was at my favorite mom and pops diner when I started reading this book. Soon I heard an ah hum as I looked up at the waitress who had placed my food down and was waiting for me to acknowledge her. The first chapter had me so engrossed every thing around me had disappeared into a void. To me that is a heck of a way to start a book. I came close to emailing Lenore to tell her this in fact.

The book’s main character is Jude who has
Donna Brown
Nov 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
Jude Black is in hospital with severe injuries having been found on the beach after a fall – or a push? – from the bluff near her home. As the doctors try to save her life, it becomes apparent that they are striving to save two lives, not one. Jude is pregnant and the identity of the father is as much of a mystery as many things in Jude’s life. As Jude lies in her comatose state, aware of all around her, she begins to sort through some of the things in her life, in an almost subconscious effort ...more
Apr 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This is the first, in what I hope to be many of Lenore Skomal's books i will read. Having had this book in my library for a few weeks now, I just didn't think an amazing book lay between the unassuming cover and (at the time) nondescript title. I started reading this book late at night and was spellbound within the first few paragraphs. The book tells the story of Jude, a sufferer of depression, and raised by an alcoholic mother. Jude is a loner, and very misunderstood. The story also develops ...more
Nov 26, 2012 rated it really liked it
Skomal has written a book that makes you take a step back and ponder different subjects you might not have thought of before. It’s about a woman named Jude who fell off a cliff while pregnant. She ends up being in a vegetative state, but her mind is active so she can hear everyone around her. The doctors and family don’t know what to do. Should they take her off life support? Who should be the one to pull the plug: doctors or family? What about the unborn child? These questions and more come to ...more
Kathleen Kelly
Dec 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: finished
Bluff is a story about a woman, Jude, who falls off a bluff and ends up with brain damage on life support. She is pregnant which really complicates things. The doctors have told Frances, Jude's best friend, that there is no hope of recovery but they want to keep Jude on life support until the fetus grows to term. Frances has hopes to be able to raise Jude's baby but there happens to be a sister that Jude has not seen for years who plans to take the baby to raise in Paris. Jude is able to go ...more
Diana Hockley
Mar 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Don't bother with this book if you want a light read! It's deep and totally absorbing. There have been many books written with the main protagonist in a coma but able to hear what is being said without being able to respond. However, I think Lenore Skomal has produced something different from the norm and congratulate her for that!

Jude is pregnant and one day, at about the five month mark, she goes over the bluff, from which there should be no escape with one's life. However, Jude survives and
Nicole Henke
Dec 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I finished this book in one sitting- I could NOT put it down, until the end! The author gives us a very unique story- hindsight is 20/20 and as Jude is laying in her coma, she has the time to go back through her life, and bring the reader into her tale. I have to admit I guessed who the father was early on, but even with that knowledge, the story still kept me hooked, as you didn't know what would happen when the baby was born.

This story will stay with you- I suggest NOT reading it before bed,
Emily L. Moir-Genther
Bluff is a book that grabs you right away. Within the first few sentences of the prelude, you already feel Jude's desperation and deep depression.

Without pause, the reader is drawn into a dismal life with the only bleak hope belonging to those gathered around Jude. Her best friend's hope that Jude is somehow still there, even in her coma state, and that the baby Jude carries will somehow be alright. The doctors' hopes that there work will be fruitful. But Jude's own hopes and dreams are at an
While I tend to read more fantasy and sci-fi than regular fiction, the premise of this book caught my attention. And it was a worthwhile read, if not remarkable. I found the ethical questions raised interesting, and I think I will look for other books in future which deal with similar topics. However, I didn't find this book terribly well-written, and I feel like it could have been much better than it was, or perhaps that it should have gone in other directions or had the ...more
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Lenore Skomal wants you to eat her books. She wants you to chew them in your teeth, savor them on your tongue, breathe them in, and feel her words in your skin. Her passionate desire is to touch your heart, inspire you, and luxuriate in the world of the written word. She finds ecstasy in constructing a perfect sentence and responds willingly to the nagging ache in her heart to create an authentic ...more
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