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Sing for Me

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  187 ratings  ·  53 reviews
When a good church girl starts singing in a jazz club and falls for the music—as well as a handsome African American man—she struggles to reconcile her childhood faith with her newfound passions.

Raised in the Danish Baptist Church, Rose Sorensen knows it’s wrong to sing worldly songs. But Rose still yearns for those she hears on the radio—“Cheek to Cheek,” “Smoke Gets in Y
Paperback, 336 pages
Published April 1st 2014 by Howard Books
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Average rating 3.98  · 
Rating details
 ·  187 ratings  ·  53 reviews

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Caryn Rivadeneira
Mar 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Loved this book! Not only because it's set in the Chicago my Swedish grandparents moved to and lived in, not only because it offers up historical gems every Chicagoan will love, not only because the heroine is a Scandinavian with SOUL, not only because the heroine and I share a love of Mihalia Jackson, but because the story is so powerful, so engaging. Only a few pages in, I couldn't put it down this wonderful story of love and injustice and following God-given dreams and callings. ...more
Apr 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is the second book I have read by this author, and again I am amazed by her ability to construct complex young adult characters.

Sing for Me is set in Chicago, during the Depression, Rose Sorenson is a mostly obedient daughter and always-responsible older sister. She understands what is expected in her family and her church and she sticks to the path that has been laid out for her. Then, one night her cousin introduces her to a new world of music in a smoky jazz club. It is there where she
Katherine Pershey
Mar 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Breathtakingly good.

The premise sounded compelling, but I hesitated because I don't generally do romance, or Christian fiction, or historical fiction. But Sing for Me is *not* typical genre fiction. It has a wonderful literary feel, with lyrical language and nuanced characters and an strong sense of time and place. But I think what I loved most of all - in addition to the characters themselves - is the gentle but powerful way that justice and faithfulness were woven into the narrative. The nove
Apr 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
received this book from Howard Books for no charge in exchange for my honest review of this book. The opinions expressed here are my own.

Book Description:

When a good church girl starts singing in a jazz club and falls for the music—as well as a handsome African American man—she struggles to reconcile her childhood faith with her newfound passions.

Raised in the Danish Baptist Church, Rose Sorensen knows it’s wrong to sing worldly songs. But Rose still yearns for those she hears on the radio—“Ch
Rambling Readers
Mar 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing
"Sing for Me" was a novel that interested me from the moment that I read the description. The plot held the promise of depth and uniqueness and delivered both. Karen Halvorsen Schreck builds a poignant tale of love, acceptance, and purpose set in 1930s Chicago. It reads like a work of literature and ventures into subjects that are thought-provoking and emotionally charged. Halvorsen Schreck shows the shades of gray between the spectrum of perceived right and wrong, acceptable and unacceptable. ...more
Victor Gentile
Apr 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Karen Halvorsen Schreck in her new book “Sing For Me” published by Howard Books takes us into the life of Rose Sorensen.

From the back cover: When a good church girl starts singing in a jazz club and falls for the music—as well as a handsome African American man—she struggles to reconcile her childhood faith with her newfound passions.

Raised in the Danish Baptist Church, Rose Sorensen knows it’s wrong to sing worldly songs. But Rose still yearns for those she hears on the radio—“Cheek to Cheek,”
Apr 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Howard Books sent the book "Sing For Me" by Karen Halvorsen Schreck for my review. I received a free copy of this book from Howard Books, for my honest review. The opinions expressed here are my own. From the cover, I was not sure I would like this novel. That just goes to show that you cannot literally judge a book by its cover.
I thought this was an excellent book, both in writing style and story content. I enjoy period novels and this was set in the 1930’s during the Jazz Age in Chicago. Times
Nov 25, 2013 rated it it was amazing
A captivating tale set against tumultuous times.

Rose Sorenson is a hardworking young woman who longs for the sounds and music of the late night jazz clubs. The Danish Baptist Church she attends, looks down on the worldly songs that are sung on the radio and in the clubs, but Rose finds herself drawn to them and their beauty.

When Rose gets the chance to sing for a band called The Chess Men, she has a choice to make between her family's expectations and the song in her heart.

I loved the style of
Chelsey Wolford
Aug 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
This book offered a storyline/plot that is somewhat different than the things I am normally drawn to. I am always up for something different, and this book offered just that. The setting is Chicago in the 1930’s, mid depression. Rose Sorensen, our passionate heroine, finds herself between a rock and a hard place. She is loves to sing types of music that she knows her family and the people of the church she was raised in would not approve of, and she finds herself in love with an African American ...more
The fortunes of Rose’s family have suffered since the Depression hit. As a result, they’ve had to downsize into an apartment owned by the wealthy Nygaard family, on whom they are wholly dependent. Rose, however, has an opportunity to bring in some extra income by singing songs both families disapprove of. Prohibition is over and the jazz club is legal, as is Rose’s attendance there. But what would happen to her family if her evening occupation and companions were discovered?

Sing For Me is a book
Brandi (Rambles of a SAHM)
Prepare to be immersed in the semi-Utopian world of Chicago's Bronzeville jazz clubs. It is 1937 and the Depression has struck the nation and left chaos in its wake. In many respects it has evened the playing field for many but among the older generation there are still taboos that can't be broken.

Rose's cousin Rob has long admired her singing abilities. Up to this point Rose has only sung in church. But she secretly sings worldly songs that seem to stir her soul. One night Rob convinces her to
Mar 03, 2014 rated it liked it
“Sing for Me” is a debut novel set in an era that is rife with corruptness in a time that made falling in love and pursuing your dreams an impossible thing.

I couldn’t help but feel a great deal of empathy for Rose who is burdened to care for her disabled sister, wanting to sing because that is the desire God has laid on her heart and falling for a forbidden love, one her family, especially her father and definitely all of society is not going to accept or tolerate. It was hard to read and know
Stephanie Landsem
Apr 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
When I heard about Karen Halvorsen Schreck’s release of Sing for me, a story of a good church girl singing in a jazz club in depression-era Chicago, I couldn’t wait to read it. I’m glad to say my excitement was well-placed. I got the book in the mail on a Saturday afternoon, and didn’t put it down until I’d turned the last page in the small hours of Sunday morning. I haven’t done that in a long time.

Sing for Me is beautiful story not only for its well-researched historical detail and finely draw
May 20, 2016 rated it it was ok
I wanted to like this book. It seemed like it has some great ideas, some good characters, and good potential. And I'm a singer who does both church and secular music! So it should have struck a chord. But something just seemed missing to me. Maybe because the characters weren't quite developed enough. Maybe because the action seemed a bit too quick. (Girl falls for guy at first meeting despite obvious barriers. Girl switches from good girl conservative church singing to sneaking out at midnight ...more
Oct 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
" and this is what Papa says. He says on this earth we are homeless and searching, though we may fool ourselves into thinking otherwise. He says it doesn't matter, the color of our skin. We are traveling through this world, seeking another home." Schreck brings the story of the early nineteen hundreds to life in a twist of forbidden loves, forbidden by color, forbidden from jazz music, forbidden to dream a different dream than your parents, trials that rocked the 1920's. The story is realistic, ...more
Mar 29, 2014 rated it really liked it
Rose sneaks out with her cousin who takes her to this jazz club to sing. What she sees when she gets to the club is everything her parents have told her to stay away from, yet she is drawn not only to the club, but to the pianist of the Chess Men.
This is a rich story that just sings. Recommended!
Carla Stewart
Jan 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Sing For Me is an achingly beautiful story of longing and hope in the midst of what seems impossible. Karen Halvorsen Schreck reaches deep into the soul with prose that sings. Straightforward. Honest. Utterly compelling.
Absorbing and engaging--I found myself binging to the end, enjoying it all.
Mary E.
Aug 27, 2014 rated it it was amazing
compelling (I couldn't put it down); realistic (the time and place came alive for me); memorable characters (even now I think about them) ...more
Jun 23, 2018 rated it liked it
So this book started off well enough, but several chapters in I got bored or maybe just restless. For a few chapters I contemplated DNFing this, however, I really wanted to see how things turned out. It was a good thing I kept with it, because I ended up liking the remainder of the story.

I liked Rose and I was happy to see how she went after what she wanted. She fought through tradition, expectations, fear and doubt to seek her purpose and what she felt she was meant to do. At the time, that was
Wendy Plant
Mar 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Wonderful story that explores several different topics. Set just before ww2 it explores inter racial friendships, legalism in the church and homes of christians, and social class. Both heart warming and heart breaking A good read to make you think
Amanda H.
Feb 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Such a good book!
There are many aspects of this novel that I think the author tastefully described, weighing in on the magnitude while not being crude.
Nov 07, 2018 rated it liked it
Sweet story dealing with a mixed race couple in Depression-era Chicago. I felt it needed a little more romance but the songs...
Luthermilla Ecole
Jan 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Lovely, just amazing
Jeff Arena
Aug 09, 2014 rated it really liked it

Sing for Me shouldn't work as well as it does. A historically research piece about race, art, religion, immigrant culture, labor and class relations, gender, family, disability, and (perhaps most of all) the mythic place known as Chicago, the novel weaves together big and small ideas about place, period, and identity. The writer's experience and talent play a part in this book's success, but I think the key is the way every character, setting, and problem is witnessed with love.

I won't recap the

patrick Lorelli
Jul 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery-suspense
Sing for me is a story that takes place in the 30s and the lead character Rose sings in her church and her cousin decides to sneak her out of her apartment to go to a night club – speak easy. There when she does sing she blows them away with her voice and she was offered a job to sing there. The family could use the extra money because her sister has cerebral- palsy, were struggling. After she is there performing for a short while she begins to date one of the musicians and this causes problems ...more
Catherine Richmond
Nov 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Climb out the bedroom window and down the fire escape with Rose. Hop into her cousin's DeSoto and travel across Chicago to a jazz club for some great music, music forbidden to her. Don't lose sight of Rose as her journey becomes ever more dangerous, opposing her father, the church, and an intolerant culture.

The tension of a racially mixed relationship, the inclusion of a character with a disability, the unusual setting of 1930s Chicago, and superb writing all add up to an excellent story with u
Jennifer S. Brown
Aug 02, 2015 rated it really liked it
This book so was so up my alley--Depression-era novel; young female grappling with her own desires vs. her religious upbringing; a relationship between a white woman and an African-American man in Chicago mid-1930s-- that I feared it wouldn't live up to my expectations. But--yay!--I really liked it! The young woman is a singer, and I was impressed at how beautifully the writing about the music was conveyed. Often when people try to capture music in words it falls flat, but in "Sing for Me," the ...more
May 05, 2016 rated it really liked it
The story plotline of this book was different then most books. The main character, Rose, face different problems. She has to choose between her church or her love for singing other songs than just church songs. In the timeline where the story was set, Rose's parents were the ones who chose who she loved or who she got married too. The author, Karen Halvorsen Svhreck, did a great job on expressing what Rose felt inside. You can try to relate to some problems that the main character faced but mos ...more
Apr 18, 2015 rated it liked it
I was drawn to this book by the Art Deco font in the title and the title itself. I have always wanted to be a jazz singer, so I had to read this book. I enjoyed all the additions of hymns and standards lyrics! I really struggled through the first third of the book, but once Rose started to sing and the relationship bloomed I quickly picked up interest. The title was clever...Sing for a person of song I can understand her needing to sing for her own need, but I can't quit thinking about t ...more
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Girlfriends Book ...: May read 3 4 May 25, 2016 02:49PM  
Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Nov 19, 2014 05:37PM  
¿Por qué no una traducción al Español? 1 11 Oct 22, 2014 05:21PM  
Translation into Spanish, why not? 1 2 Sep 24, 2014 12:53PM  

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Karen Halvorsen Schreck is the author of the historical novels Broken Ground (Simon & Schuster May 2016), called a “masterfully written . . . must-read” by USA Today, and Sing For Me, which Publisher's Weekly described as “an impressive debut…a well-wrought and edifying page-turner” in a Starred Review, along with two novels for young adults and a book for children. Her short stories, interviews, ...more

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