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Reviewed by Stephanie Lynn for Readers' Favorite
Celey by Susan Diane Black Blackmon is an American historical fiction novel set in the nineteenth century. Blackmon transports readers back in time to a family not unlike many of our own. Celey's story is one of persistence, faith, and the unyielding American spirit that keeps hope alive, even in the darkest of times. As a child, Celey Dobbs moved from Illinois to a farming community in Waldron, Arkansas during the mid-1800s with her family. When the town's notorious black sheep, Tom Anderson, starts making trouble for the Dobbs family and their neighbors, Daniel Tilman and his family step in to protect Celey and her kin from Andersons' dastardly schemes. Her story begins here and weaves a wondrous tapestry of love and loss, pain and redemption, family and lasting friendships.
Susan Diane Black Blackmon instantly pulled me into the story of Celey and before long I felt as if her story was a glance into my story as well! Her family wasn't wealthy, but were rich in love and had everything they needed, all provided by God. I loved the simple way of life. It is portrayed here as not lacking, but natural and full of unexpected blessings. This is a story of great pain and greater restoration as her family weathers the storms of life. The firm bonds of friendship and community that only grow stronger as the family draws closer is a beautiful testament, and one I felt strongly throughout Celey's story. Celey is a heartfelt and poignant story that's impossible to put down and sure to delight readers!