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One for the Blackbird, One for the Crow

4.24  ·  Rating details ·  20,214 ratings  ·  1,856 reviews
From the bestselling author of The Ragged Edge of Night comes a powerful and poetic novel of survival and sacrifice on the American frontier.

Wyoming, 1870. For as long as they have lived on the frontier, the Bemis and Webber families have relied on each other. With no other settlers for miles, it is a matter of survival. But when Ernest Bemis finds his wife, Cora, in a com
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Kindle Edition, 493 pages
Published October 8th 2019 by Lake Union Publishing
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Popular Answered Questions
Melody Smith Unfortunately not. Could you please write one about the fall of democracy and traitorous frauds taking over the country? I will buy a dozen.
Libbie Hawker (L.M. Ironside) My writing style isn't everybody's cup of tea! :) It's okay to not like it. Life's too short to read books you aren't into. My style doesn't change ov…moreMy writing style isn't everybody's cup of tea! :) It's okay to not like it. Life's too short to read books you aren't into. My style doesn't change over the course of the book (or over the course of my entire catalogue of book), so don't force yourself to keep going if you don't like it. There are lots books out there you will love, but only so many reading hours in a single human lifetime with which to enjoy them.

I quit reading books all the time if they don't hold my attention or if the narrative style isn't to my liking. If there's a law stating that you have to finish every single book you start, there must be hundreds of warrants out for my arrest. ;) (less)

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 ·  20,214 ratings  ·  1,856 reviews


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Berit☀️✨
Oct 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
Olivia Hawker’s descriptive storytelling Whisked me away to 1870s Wyoming. Gritty and raw this is a tale about resilience, acceptance, and forgiveness. Two families living on the Wyoming Prairie with their nearest neighbors over 20 miles away. When the husband of one family and the wife of another are caught in a compromising position. One man is killed and the other man is sent to jail, leaving the women Cora and Nettie Mae to pick up the pieces. Life on the frontier is hard and these women hav ...more
Nursebookie
Oct 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I LOVED THIS BOOK! Everybody, this is a must read!! Hawker is an incredible storyteller and in this entanglement of words have created this literary masterpiece.

5 solid stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Wyoming, 1876. The Bemis (Ernest/Cora and daughter Beulah) and Webber (Substance/Nettie Mae and son Clyde) have relied on each other for survival. But when Ernest Bemis finds his wife, Cora with Substance, Ernest kills him. While Ernest is in prison, the women left behind, despite their feelings of anger and sham
...more
Tara Rock
Jan 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was so impressed with the poetic and lyrical prose in this beautiful novel. The story was stunning, captivating and I had hoped for a few more chapters. I loved every moment of this magical story.
Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
Oct 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
I’ve always loved historical fiction set in the pioneering western US. One for the Blackbird is set in Wyoming in 1870.

The Bemis and Webber families rely on each other for survival. There’s no one else around, so they need each other. Ernest finds his wife, Cora, cheating with their neighbor, and now, Ernest is in prison with the two women left to survive on their own.

Of course, Cora and Nettie Mae have unsettled feelings between them, but when winter comes, they are forced together to tend the
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Karen
Nov 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book took me back to the prairie.. I haven’t really revisited since my days as a young girl when I read every single Little House book available!

This time it’s 1870, rugged and isolated Wyoming.
Two families who live on neighboring farms miles away from the closest town.
Cora who was raised in the city is lonely and has a dalliance with her neighbor Nettie Mae’s husband Substance.
Ernest, Cora’s husband comes across the pair at the river and in an act of passion, shoots Substance.
Substance d
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Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
This for me was one of those books that the story was pretty decent but I got bored reading it. It should have been good but as I sit here thinking about it I just can't find a reason to say it was.
The story line is that prairie neighbors the Bemis and the Webbers live out miles away from town. One of the dudes decides to bonk the other one's wife and ends up dead. Other daddy goes off to jail. Leaving the two women and children on their own. That's a pretty big deal in the time period...severa
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Kate Quinn
Oct 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A story of family, friendship, and survival on the prairie frontier. Two homesteader families are thrown together under possibly the most awkward circumstances possible: Cora is found in bed with Nettie Mae’s husband, shots are fired, and when the smoke clears Nettie Mae is a widow and Cora’s husband is in jail. To say these two women want nothing to do with each other would be the understatement of the century, but as they stare down the barrel of an impending Wyoming winter with no men to work ...more
Tammy
Sep 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One for the Blackbird, One for the Crow is a captivating western family saga that begins with betrayal and heartache, and ends with forgiveness and a sisterly friendship.
Set in the 1870 eastern Wyoming prairie in the shadow of the Bighorn Mountains, two families with adjoining homesteads, the nearest town or neighbor twenty miles away, are broken and left without the leadership of their men when one catches his wife and neighbor in a compromising position.
With one husband in jail for two years
...more
Debra
May 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
It has been a long time since I have read a book that captivated me as much as this one. Every word was poetry and every page made me want to hurry and get to the next one, yet, I had to savor each one I was on.

This is a book about sin, and redemption and wounds and healing and love and an awareness of everything under the sun. Simple people, broken dreams and the beauty of the world around and its healing touch.

Read this book.
Susan
Oct 26, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own-read
Thank you Netgalley and Lake Union Publishing for an ARC.

This book started out with so much promise but ended up getting bogged down in the details. I understand that Wyoming 1870 is going to be difficult but the pages and pages of sheep and lambs were too much. Olivia Hawker can definitely write and I will give her another chance but this book seriously was too long by half.
Penny
Sep 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One for the Blackbird, One for the Crow is a book about loss and survival in the vast expanse of Wyoming. Two families, the Bemises and the Webbers, have settled on land adjacent to each other miles from anywhere or anyone else. In the opening chapter we discover that the Mrs Bemis has had an affair with Mr Webber and is discovered by her husband who promptly murders Mr Webber. The story however does not dwell so much on this act but on what happens next to the women and children left behind.

The
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Leslie Wilson
I guess I’m an outlier here. I couldn’t wait for this to be over.
Mackenzie - PhDiva Books
Set on the prairie in Wyoming in the late nineteenth century, One for the Blackbird, One for the Crow tells the story of two women who must learn to rely on one another for their families to survive in the wake of a terrible betrayal and tragedy. When Cora’s husband catches her having an affair with Nettie Mae’s husband, he shoots him and ends up in prison. Now, with no other neighbors around for miles, Nettie Mae and Cora will need to overcome their differences to make it through winter.

Olivia
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PattyMacDotComma
2.5★
“Beulah, he said, I done something wrong.

I said, I know it, Pa.

He nodded. Pa never questioned this way I have—the knowing that comes to me from the movement of wind or the scent of blackberries, or the sound of a gunshot by the river.”


There are some wonderful descriptive passages and an interesting premise to this story, just enough interest to keep me going as far as I did until I began skimming. Two mothers, one widowed, one with her husband in jail, face a bleak winter on neighbouring far
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Tammy(PeaceLoveBooks)
One for the Blackbird, One for the Crow is a lyrically written story of 1870's Wyoming and the hardships of two tragically connected families. This is a story of healing and hope. Olivia Hawker's beautiful writing is a story to be savored!
Asheley
Nov 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019-read, historical
Edit: After finishing this several weeks ago, I restarted it and read it super slowly. Savored the story and the language. My gosh, this book is so good. I felt the tension between Cora and Nettie Mae even more than in the first read, I felt all of the heartache and then the hope from start to finish, and I fell head-over-heels in love with the isolation and harshness of the Wyoming prairie. Since I enjoyed the book so much, enough to read it again immediately, and since I feel lost now that I'm ...more
Karren  Sandercock
Aug 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
Thanks so much to NetGalley, Lake Union Publishing and Olivia Hawker for giving me the opportunity to read her new book: One For The Blackbird, One For The Crow. I have read her previous book, The Ragged Edge Of Night and I loved it.

Wyoming prairie in 1876, two isolated farming families live next door to each other and one night all hell breaks loose. When Ernest Bemis discovers his wife Cora and his neighbor Substance Webber cheating! The meek mild Ernest shoots Substance and kills him. He ride
...more
Kerrin Parris
Nov 18, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The story takes place in 1870 on a desolate Wyoming prairie, a good 20 miles from the nearest town. When Ernest Bemis finds his wife, Cora, having sex with their only neighbor, Substance Webber, Ernest shoots and kills Substance. Ernest turns himself in and is sentenced to two years in prison. With winter approaching, Cora asks Substance’s widow, Nettie Mae, if the two families could share resources. Nettie Mae refuses at first, but when her only child, Clyde, is weakened by fever, she agrees to ...more
Aleta
Feb 13, 2020 rated it liked it
So much descriptive writing. I became bored during these times which were many.
I did like the story itself but felt all during the book "lets move on".
Bambi Rathman
Nov 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I am in an utterly and hopeless book hangover after reading this book! Oh! My! Gosh! I am speechless! I Just had an "experience"! It was more than just reading a book. It was like going into the pages and becoming a part of the story. It was a complete bonding with the characters, the remote and endless landscape of the Wyoming territory and with the vegetation and animal life that dwelt within that habitat. It was an unbelievable and unforgettable encounter with an epic read.

I don't even know
...more
Karren  Sandercock
Aug 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thanks so much to NetGalley, Lake Union Publishing and Olivia Hawker for giving me the opportunity to read her new book One For The Blackbird, One For The Crow. I read her previous book, The Ragged Edge Of Night and I loved it.

Wyoming prairie in 1876, two isolated farming families live next door to each other and one night all hell breaks loose. When Ernest Bemis discovers his wife Cora and his neighbor Substance Webber cheating! The meek mild Ernest shoots Substance and kills him. He rides to t
...more
Debbie
Mar 23, 2020 rated it really liked it
I’d recommend One for the Blackbird, One for the Crow to anyone who also loved Where the Crawdads Sing. Although the stories don’t seem similar, Beulah reminded me a great deal of Kya Clark, the “Marsh Girl.” Both Kya and Beulah have a love of nature and animals. And both were regarded as peculiar. One for the Blackbird, One for the Crow takes place in Wyoming in 1876. Beulah’s mother, Cora, is caught in a compromising situation with her neighbor. Cora’s husband kills the man and turns himself i ...more
Janette Mcmahon
May 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Hawker has a powerful book of friendships that come out of necessity and the hardships of living in a remote area of the country. This novel had more than one interesting theme carrying the reader on the winds that rushed through these pages; female friendship, loneliness, parenting, and even a bit of other-worldliness. Highly recommend to readers of Sharon McCrumb's books set in Appalachia and Western women's fiction.
Colleen
It’s 1876 and for the past eight years, the Bemis and Webber families have relied on one another as they struggled to survive life on the harsh Wyoming prairie.. The closest town is twenty miles away, and there are no other neighbours. When Ernest Bemis finds his wife in a compromising position with Substance Webber, he pulls a gun; Webber ends up dead and Bemis winds up in jail. That leaves their two wives and five children alone on the homesteads to try to get through the fast-approaching wint ...more
Betül
**ARC provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review**
description

It took me time to really get into the story because of the slow pace and length of the book. But I eventually didn't mind it that much when I was further into the story. The multiple POVs (Beulah, Clyde, Cora, and Nettie Mae) were great because it showed different perspectives and made it easier to connect and relate to the characters. I had to get used to how Beulah's POV was written because it was sometimes difficult to follow, how
...more
Louetta Waters
Sep 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book...wow. I have so many words, so much I am feeling for this book...it was so wonderful. The writhing... so beautiful and lyrical and wise.
I loved this story of pain, love, struggle and hate, understanding, forgiveness, joy, nature and seasons and of life and death. Olivia Hawker has taken all this and more, and evolved it into the story of two women, their men gone, reluctantly bringing their families together to survive the beautiful wild Montana land. Hawker's writing is beautifully
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Jen Juenke
Sep 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
WOW. Let us double up that WOW!
I had started this book months ago and kept putting it on the back burner.
I should have just kept with it before putting mediocre books before it.

This book is an EPIC that stands on its own.
It starts with a murder and from there the story unfolds.
It is told by 4 narrative, Cora, Nettie Mae, Buleah, and Clyde.
I would also say that the prairie and the land are also its own narrative.

The story unfolds like a galloping pony that you will not want to stop. The many t
...more
Katie
Mar 05, 2020 rated it did not like it
The author, Olivia Hawker, is a poet. The way she uses words to describe nature and the sounds of the prairie is what kept me reading "One for the Blackbird, One for the Crow" long after I had lost interest in the actual story -- which felt like a painful ride in a slow-moving buck wagon. Pity, too, because the first few pages really pulled me in, and the premise is interesting.

One of the biggest problems is that events and ideas that would be the natural after-effects of the story’s tragedy are
...more
Sue
Oct 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This novel takes place in Wyoming in 1870. There are few settlers and the Bemis and Weber families are neighbors - within walking distance - but their closest neighbors are 20 miles away. It's a long way to a small town and the families have to rely on themselves during the long days and the longer winters. The author's writing is so descriptive that I felt like I was with these families on the prairie with no one around for miles, working non- stop but being totally in touch with the land and ...more
Frosty61
Aug 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley
4.5 stars rounded up.
I'm one of those people who've learned I need to be in a certain frame of mind in order for a book to resonate with me. It's hit or miss sometimes. After a summer of light reads, I decided to give this one a try and it didn't disappoint. Thank you, NetGalley for the ARC!

This is a book to be savored. The writing is lyrical, the descriptions are incredible, the characters are realistic, the pace is a little slow (hence the deduction of a half star), but the plot pulled me in
...more
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