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Waiting for the Night Song
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Waiting for the Night Song

3.47  ·  Rating details ·  2,125 ratings  ·  458 reviews
A moving novel about friendships forged in childhood magic and ruptured by the high price of secrets that leave you forever changed.

Cadie Kessler has spent decades trying to cover up one truth. One moment. But deep down, didn't she always know her secret would surface?

An urgent message from her long-estranged best friend Daniela Garcia brings Cadie, now a forestry research
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published January 12th 2021 by Forge Books
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Average rating 3.47  · 
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 ·  2,125 ratings  ·  458 reviews

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daph pink ♡
DNF :- 60%

It's not a good sign when you feel - 250 pages in and I don't care. This book is trying to address so many situations that none of them are done well. I am having a hard time concentrating and believing whatever is happening - ecology, murder,romance,entomology, friendship,
immigration. It's not boring or bad. It's just repetitive which is something I hate especially in mystery books. So it was a huge disappointment.

Theresa Alan
Jan 07, 2021 rated it really liked it
This is an interesting book in that it’s a literary novel with some suspenseful sections. It’s a story about immigrants and anti-immigrant sentiment and about folks who care about the environment and those who benefit by pretending no climate change is happening.

Cadie Kessler is an entomologist trying to get her research showing that a beetle is wreaking havoc on the forests of New England, causing the trees to dry up and die and thus become perfect fuel for devastating forest fires. When her c
Told in two time lines, this novel tells of an event that happened to two young girls enjoying their summer in the New Hampshire woods and the ripples it caused down the years for those involved.

Eleven year old Cadie is the girl at the heart of the book. An unusual girl without many friends, she loves nature and the roaming the woods so her summer friendship with Danielle spent exploring the creek in a boat and picking blueberries to sell is idyllic. On their excursions, they meet a boy they ca
Julie (JuJu)
Feb 11, 2021 rated it liked it
With such a beautiful cover and enticing description, I had high hopes for this one. It’s not that I didn’t enjoy it, but it wasn’t the unputdownable read I craved. It did have a very satisfying ending, and some interesting portions. But it drug on in too many spots. And there was too much repetitive information.

I struggled with rating this book. Some portions were a solid 4, but I considered not finishing it during the slower parts. I usually read thrillers, so I don’t think there was enough ex
Mar 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
@juliecdalton has written a winner folks!

She has captured the youthful belief in the possible that comes with our first friendships and mixed it with the woodsy, sweet, metallic scent of New England's secret lakes to create a mystery fueled by today's most pressing issues. The careful weaving of budding emotions with the natural tapestry of the changing New Hampshire environment is skillful and I must say, enveloping.

The way Dalton portrays the land and its richness is a gift to the reader who
Pamela Loring
Jul 06, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A bucolic summer, a close friendship, escapades picking blueberries on a New Hampshire lake: life seems so simple, but beetles are quietly undermining the health of the forest, and the ugly machinations of racism are becoming more and more apparent. Waiting for the Night Song uncovers the impact of long-term social injustice, racism and climate change on a family, a friendship, and a future, illustrating how everyday decisions can impact our world, and the importance of finding a path that offer ...more
Jan 17, 2021 rated it really liked it
This was another one of those books that I found difficult to fit neatly into a single genre. While the timeline was a bit ambiguous (the chapters alternated between “that summer” and “present day”), there was a strong contemporary fiction vibe with many of the issues explored in the “present day” narrative -- climate change, illegal immigration, racism, politics vs science, etc. – mirroring so closely with so many “hot-button” issues that we as a society are dealing with currently (and have bee ...more
Leslie Teel
Jul 06, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Part thriller, part ecological warning, Waiting for the Night Song is a beautiful story of friendship, racism, and the natural world...impossible to put down, it will stay with you. I can't wait to read Julie Carrick Dalton's next books! ...more
Waiting for the Night Song, the debut novel of Julie Carrick Dalton, is a story of childhood best friends, the sweetness of long summer days of freedom and exploration, but also of ugly secrets and the kind of trauma that shapes a child’s personality forever. This author knows how to wield her pen; her words are beautiful and compelling. The story of going home to make amends turns into a fight for social injustice as well as a battle to save the magnificent forests of New Hampshire. A lot was g ...more
Jan 19, 2021 rated it it was ok
Shelves: audio, overdrive
This book attempted too much - ecology, entomology, coming of age romance, immigration and murder. I found it both jumbled and boring. I listened to the audiobook narrated by Barrie Kreinik who read everything with an annoying urgency in her voice.
Jan 23, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed this amazing read that is delivered in dual time lines of “Present Day” and “That Summer”. This is a book that has a lot of themes within this beautiful story; a coming-of-age tale about childhood friendships, love of books, the love of nature and the environment, a murder mystery thriller, and issues of undocumented immigrants - beautifully written in the book.

Cadence Kessler is an entomologist studying the connection of beetles and the infection of pine trees resulting in forest fir
ʚϊɞ Shelley's ʚϊɞ Book Nook

I really enjoyed this book and the main characters Cadie and Daniela. The author does a great job writing dialogue which sounded authentic, and the perfect amount of description so you felt like you were in the New England/New Hampshire.

I love how Ms. Dalton wrote a beautiful testament to the love of nature, as well as human behavior. I was enraptured by the writing, the words and the almost poetic language on the pages. This is a captivating story presenting the best of modern Ame
May 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A killer debut that tackles love, racism and even climate change. Waiting for the Night Song will leave you breathless and wanting more. Congratulations, Julie!
Jennifer Dardzinski
Aug 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing
When I was reading this book, I thought how much it reminded me of the writing in Where the Crawdads Sing, which I also loved. The writing is so beautiful and descriptive, you feel like you are there seeing the scenery before you. Lots of great discussion topics for a book club for sure. I can't wait for my two book clubs to read this book! ...more

So this is not a permanent DNF, but rather (I hope), temporary. I am having a great deal of trouble concentrating on this book since the events of last Wednesday, 01/06/21. All I want to do is doomscroll and watch endless hours of news. So I want to caution anyone who reads this, that it may not be the fault of the book that this is going in the DNF pile.

However, I do want to add that I'm past page 100 and I find myself skim reading. This usually isn't a good sign. So, I'm going to set it as
Nancy McFarlane
Sep 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing
If you only read one book this year, this should be the one. It really puts many current issues such as climate change, immigration, and racism into a perspective you can feel personally by immersing yourself into the story and identifying with the characters in the book.

Waiting for the Night Song is a lyrical and amazing story about nature and what will happened to it if we continue to ignore climate change. It is the story of wonderful, productive and caring people who live in fear because of
Sep 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This took me a little while to get into but once I reached about 30% read, I couldn’t put it down! Really well written addressing illegals status in the US and climate change with plenty of personal drama to keep the reader hooked. Really enjoyed reading it!
Nov 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
With so many positive comments to make, it’s hard to know where to start. Julie Dalton puts words together in such a way it’s easy to visualize both setting and characters. The reader is transported to the forests of New Hampshire and feels a oneness with young Cadie and Daniela as they canoe the waters and explore the woods around their homes. One feels their dread and fear when tragic events occur. I could quote many passages from the book that I particularly liked, but I’ll start with this o ...more
Jan 13, 2021 rated it it was amazing
There is no pausing while reading this story about two childhood friends with a dark shared secret and the impact that it makes on their adult lives.  I could not put this down once I started.  It is a slow build with Cadie who is a nature fanatic as a child and she developed into a career.  Now she is an entomologist and tracking a pine beetle that is destroying trees in Colorado and takes her back home to the forests of New Hampshire.  As she directs a clear cut to a forest near her hometown t ...more
Aug 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Netgalley ♥️ Cadie is getting samples for research but could get arrested for trespassing. The forest is at risk of a fire. There are studies of how a beetle is effecting a rare bird and causing fires. I liked cadies research . Daniela messages Cadie and a long forgotten night from childhood might come back to haunt her. I was hooked from the beginning. I liked reading about Cadies childhood with Daniela . Cadie wants to tell the truth about what happened with Daniela but it could cost her caree ...more
Jennifer C. Rappole
Nov 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Do not miss this opportunity to be swept away by the engrossing story of Cadie. “Waiting for the Night Song” carries a true appreciation and respect for our environment and the people who carry it with them.
If you are feeling a little more settled these days, and hunkering down at home more as the seasons change, YOU MUST ADD THIS BOOK TO YOUR LIST!
I was fortunate to get an early copy and read the book in a day!!
Kasey LeBlanc
Nov 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
After reading the preview for Julie Carrick Dalton's Waiting for the Night Song, I was so pleased I had won a copy because I needed to know what happened next! I've really struggled to focus on books these past 8 months or so, and so I was so pleased to find that this was a book that not only held my attention, but compelled me to keep reading.

In a year that began with the wildfires in Australia and continued with the fires on the west coast of the US, (plus a sprinkle of murder hornets in the m
Rachel McKenny
Jan 29, 2021 rated it it was amazing
A forester with a secret from her childhood— which can’t help but catch up with her. Cadie spend her youth running around in the woods with her friend Daniela, but after witnessing something terrible, everything in their lives changed.

I loved the environmental themes in this book and the last fifty pages begged me to read straight through. An interesting debut!
Jordan (Jordy’s Book Club)
QUICK TAKE: I saw a lot of comparisons of this book to WHERE THE CRAWDADS SING, but ultimately this one fell a little flat for me. I had trouble investing in the central mystery and the relationship dynamics between the characters just wasn't strong enough to keep me motivated to turn pages. The author also tries to include some social justice issues (climate control) that also fell flat for me and ended up taking me out of the story. ...more
Cindy Burnett
Jan 27, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Dalton’s poignant and beautiful debut captivated me from the start. Alternating between the past and the present, Waiting for the Night Song follows Cadie Kessler, an entomologist and forestry researcher focused on studying the pine bark beetle in New Hampshire. Her goal is to prove that the beetle is present in the state and destroying pines similar to the devastation it wrought in California and Colorado. As the book opens, Cadie is drawn home to help a childhood friend confront the long-held ...more
Addison Armstrong
Dec 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I read this book in a single day. I was too enthralled to put it down! The author manages to create both an intriguing, fast-paced mystery and also a compelling call to action for environmental and social justice. I absolutely loved this book and highly recommend it!
Bookworm Extraordinaire
Jan 23, 2021 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this one a lot.

It's been compared to Where the Crawdads Sing, a book that I thought was amazing, and I can see why people feel that way. It had the same atmospheric, lush richness that Crawdads had. However, this book fell just a little short of greatness for me. It tackles some very relevant and heavy topics (climate change, illegal immigration, racism), and I felt it got a little "preachy" at times. I also had a few issues with Daniela and her mother. They just rubbed me the wrong w
Jan 11, 2021 rated it it was amazing
In WAITING FOR THE NUGHT SONG, Julie Carrick Dalton has skillfully layered an intriguing murder mystery, a testament to the bonds of female friendship, and a timely examination of the innate horrors of climate change. As the compelling story reaches its fiery climax, Dalton’s complex and intelligent protagonist is forced to consider what pieces of the past are worth salvaging … and what she should let go.
Michael Zapata
Oct 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Waiting for the Night Song is a singular, riveting portrait of persistence and friendship at the end of empire. Through tender prose and a thrilling story, Julie Carrick Dalton tracks the inescapable connectedness between inequity and the body politic, humankind and ecology, and hidden truths and memory. Dalton writes masterfully of an uncertain world that has already arrived.
Jan 12, 2021 rated it really liked it
"That Summer" and "Present Day". Two threads of narrative timeline that we the reader follow as the dark events of That Summer threaten to expose themselves, with potentially devastating consequences for two estranged childhood friends, Cadie and Daniela.

A dark secret from childhood emerging is a trope that I've read several times and was curious to see how uniquely it would play out in Waiting For The Night Song. The story also plays on the classic trope of a small community where tensions are
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Bookish First Rea...: Waiting for the Night Song by Julie Carrick 3 17 Oct 12, 2020 11:22AM  

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“Lake water lived inside her. She had swallowed and inhaled it in gulps and gasps. Flicks of eroded granite boulders and millennia-old secrets has settled in her cells. She had always been made of these mountains. This lake. This forest.” 2 likes
“A gentle buzz settled over her, stirring a memory she couldn’t pull into focus. Not fear or regret, but a reminder of herself, of who she used to be. The Cadie who commandeered lost boats. The girl who rode her bike down hills with her arms over her head. That other Cadie prodded at her from some deep hiding place she had tried to forget.” 0 likes
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