A collection of short stories by Alice Hoffman, Blackbird House weaves the stories of many different families living over time in a small farmhouse on Cape Cod.
The stories are good – she is an excellent writer, and couldn’t turn out stories that weren’t. But these stories are much darker than the novels of hers that I’m familiar with. There is also less of magic, less of hope, less of an optimistic point of view.
It’s interesting to follow American families from the time we were a British colony until nearly the present day – lots of interesting history and culture woven into the every day lives of the house’s inhabitants. It’s also fun to trace the white blackbird, the berries, the pond, the red pear tree through the stories.
But the bleakness overall was not a tone I cared for. If I’d known when I started the book what I know at the end, I might not have begun.
I am, after all, a person who wants to re-write Romeo and Juliet.