Book Review/Spotlight/Book Trailer - Then Like The Blind Man-Obie's Story - Freddie Owens | Miki's Hope

Book Review/Spotlight/Book Trailer - Then Like The Blind Man-Obie's Story - Freddie Owens

Monday, January 6, 2014



This book is considered an historical fiction/coming of age type novel, according to some reviewers reminiscent of Huckleberry Finn and Hamlet and is written in the "grand Southern tradition of storytelling". It takes place mostly in the South (Kentucky) in the 1950's. Not everyone back then was prejudiced-but a lot were. All the characters in this book are poor but rich on spirit! It is written in a Southern dialect throughout which did not seem to bother me-as a matter of fact it made the story line more believable if anything. This is a first novel by this author and I believe he did a marvelous job combining historical fact with fiction to bring us the story of one boy's struggle to cope and understand his life.

About the Book: (from Amazon)

If you wanted to destroy something, why would you want to save it too?

A storm is brewing in the all-but-forgotten back country of Kentucky. And, for young Orbie Ray, the swirling heavens may just have the power to tear open his family's darkest secrets. Nine-year-old Orbie already has his cross to bear. After the sudden death of his father, his mother Ruby has off and married his father's co-worker and friend Victor, a slick-talking man with a snake tattoo. And, when Orbie crosses paths with the black Choctaw preacher, Moses Mashbone, he learns of a power that could expose and defeat his enemies, but can't be used for revenge. When a storm of unusual magnitude descends Orbie stumbles on a solution to the paradox, one both magical and ordinary. Question is, will it be enough?

Violence & Magical Realism

Orbie renders events from a child's vividly fragmented point of view. His growth in understanding and courage - as he confronts first hand the realities of civil rights violations, domestic and child sexual abuse, religious violence and even murder - can be felt throughout the book.

A feeling of otherworldliness permeates the story, and its symbolism is omnipresent and beautifully handled. Realism becomes magical, as nothing is ever precisely what it seems.

Sex Addiction & Abandonment

Orbie's mother, a susceptible woman, quickly remarries, leaving Orbie and his younger sister at the mercy of Victor, who resolves to leave him at his sharecropping grandparent's place, a dirt farm in Kentucky, while the family sets off for Florida.

With no end to his stay in sight, Orbie settles into routines all but unthinkable weeks before. He forms a strong bond with Willis, the stunningly talented, physically disabled black boy and protege to the uncanny shaman, Moses Mashbone.

Boy Meets World

Inevitably, he finds himself drawn into Moses' teachings. As he begins to tap his own mysterious powers, his mother and stepfather return, throwing his world back into chaos. Can he discover the truth about his father's death in time to protect all he holds dear? And can he do it without being damaged by his own hatred and violence?

Read a couple of chapters for yourself

Watch the Book Trailer

Purchase the book at Amazon

Discuss this book in our PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads by clicking HERE.


About the Author: (from Amazon)


A poet and fiction writer, my work has been published in Poet Lore, Crystal Clear and Cloudy, and Flying Colors Anthology. I am a past attendee of Pikes Peak Writer's Conferences and the Association of Writers and Writing Programs, and a current member of Lighthouse Writer's Workshop in Denver, Colorado. In addition, as a professional counselor and psychotherapist, I for many years counseled perpetrators of domestic violence and sex offenders, and provided therapies for individuals and families. I hold a master's degree in contemplative psychotherapy from Naropa University in Boulder, Colorado. Born in Kentucky and raised in Detroit, I drew inspiration for my first novel, Then Like The Blind Man: Orbie's Story, from childhood experiences growing up around Harlan's Crossroads, Kentucky. My life-long studies of Tibetan Buddhism and Vedanta not to mention encounters with Native American Shamanism are also of note in this regard.

Two memories served as starting points for a short story I wrote that eventually became the novel, Then Like the Blind Man / Orbie's Story. One was of my Kentucky grandmother as she emerged from a shed with a white chicken held upside down in one of her strong bony hands. I, a boy of nine and a "city slicker" from Detroit, looked on in wonderment and horror as she summarily wrung the poor creature's neck. I watched as it ran about the yard frantically, yes incredibly, as if trying to locate something it had misplaced as if the known world could be set aright, recreated, if only that one thing could be found. And then of course it died. The second memory was of lantern light reflected off stones that lay on either side of a path to a storm cellar me and my grandparents were headed for one stormy night beneath a tornado's approaching din. There was wonderment there too, along with a vast and looming sense of impending doom. For these and many others of my childhood memories I owe my grandparents. Had I not been exposed to their homespun and wizened ways I would not have been able to begin my short story much less this novel. The same goes for my dear, good-hearted parents who have survived many bad times to enjoy the good.

Author's Website





All opinions expressed are my own honest opinions. For more information please check my Disclosure Statement. Our giveaways are in no way sponsored or promoted by Facebook.

28 comments :

Liz @ A Nut in a Nutshell said...

I have only read about 3 historical fiction novels but I really enjoyed them so I'm glad this is one, and coming of age everything is one of my very faves. I really like the premise of this story; I'll read it!

Lawna Noe said...

This sounds like a great read. The front cover alone is enough to interest me!

Casa Vilora Interiors said...

Sounds like great read. I don't read enough novels but this may be a good reason to pick one up

GossipMoms said...

I like coming to your blog you always have some great book reviews here

Pauline Cabrera said...

Thank you for the recommendation, this sounds like a good read. :-)

Masshole Mommy said...

Another book to add to my list of ones that I want to read :) Thanks so much for the detailed review of it. I definitely want to read it.

Kay Adeola said...

I love History so anything with facts incorporated i love i would love to check out this book,thank you for sharing :-)

Ashley Gill said...

I think I'd enjoy this story. I will have to check it out! Smooth talker with a snake tattoo. That makes me want to hurt him!

AMBER EDWARDS said...

Historical fictions are a great way to get to know about the times of the era in an entertaining way. I enjoy historical fictions. This one could possibly be one I would like.

Chubskulit Rose said...

This sounds very interesting. I wonder if his step father has something to do with his Dad's passing?

(Terry) My Journey With Candida said...

Years ago, I used to read Historical Fiction, .. not sure why I stopped, but I would read this for sure.

Ronnie E. said...

This may be a little too heavy for me to read (I can break down into tears upon reading about difficult situations in a second) but it's quite the unique plot. I'm always astounded by creative authors.

Sarah-Louise Bailey said...

How do you find all these fantastic books :) what an interesting story this sounds like. x

Pam said...

This story sounds so interesting- I want to find out more about his fathers death.

becca said...

wow this story sounds so interesting, I want to find out more about his fathers death.

Joanna Sormunen said...

This book sounds exactly like something I would read. I'll just swing by Amazon and get it to myself already. Then I can read it when my schedule allows.

Aisha Kristine Chong said...

Seems like an interesting book to read.

Jennifer Williams said...

This sounds like one I would love to read. Some books on history get my attention the others get my husband and oldest son's attention. This is definitely for me.

Fabulous Perks said...

Your recommendations are always great finds. This one seems very interesting. Thanks for sharing!

Lady Lilith said...

I have never heard of this book before. It looks like a great read.

Kristin said...

That cover of the book is so interesting. This year I'd really like to read more and this seems like such an interesting book.

Wonderful review as well!

Michelle G. said...

This looks like a fantastic book! I'm adding to my must-read list. Thank you for sharing. I love historical fiction!

Pam said...

I love the cover and I love the fact that it takes place in the 50s. Sounds like a great read.

Le-an Lai Lacaba said...

I honestly haven't read any historical fiction as far as I remember. I don't think I could relate to this since I'm not from your country

Amanda McMahon said...

i really like historical fiction books. especially romance ones

Tess said...

My son and hubby like historical fiction, so they might like this book . : )

Kristin Sumner said...

Great review! Looks like I will be adding this to my books to read this year.

Tough Cookie Mommy said...

I really love historical fiction books like this one because they allow the reader to become immersed in that time period. I loved your review.

 
Miki's Hope . Design by Pocket