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From Tiffanie DeBartolo, author of God Shaped Hole, How to Kill a Rock Star, and Grace: The Jeff Buckley Story, comes Sorrow, a poignant story about friendship and love, art and music, and how these pursuits can save us from ourselves. Joe Harper has backpedaled throughout his life. A once-promising guitar prodigy, he’s been living without direction since abandoning his mus From Tiffanie DeBartolo, author of God Shaped Hole, How to Kill a Rock Star, and Grace: The Jeff Buckley Story, comes Sorrow, a poignant story about friendship and love, art and music, and how these pursuits can save us from ourselves. Joe Harper has backpedaled throughout his life. A once-promising guitar prodigy, he’s been living without direction since abandoning his musical dreams. Now into his thirties, having retreated from every opportunity he’s had to level up, he has lost his family, his best friend, and his own self-respect. But Joe finds an unlikely path to redemption when he starts working as a carpenter for the bohemian conceptual artist October Danko. The job returns him to his hometown, loaded with bittersweet reminders of his former life, in the shadows of his beloved redwood trees. As Joe’s relationship with October develops, he yearns to take a daring step toward a bold future, but struggles to escape the craven decisions of his past. Sorrow is a stunning, moving novel that explores masculinity and suspended adolescence, all the while begging the questions: Can courage be learned? And is it ever too late to follow your heart?


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From Tiffanie DeBartolo, author of God Shaped Hole, How to Kill a Rock Star, and Grace: The Jeff Buckley Story, comes Sorrow, a poignant story about friendship and love, art and music, and how these pursuits can save us from ourselves. Joe Harper has backpedaled throughout his life. A once-promising guitar prodigy, he’s been living without direction since abandoning his mus From Tiffanie DeBartolo, author of God Shaped Hole, How to Kill a Rock Star, and Grace: The Jeff Buckley Story, comes Sorrow, a poignant story about friendship and love, art and music, and how these pursuits can save us from ourselves. Joe Harper has backpedaled throughout his life. A once-promising guitar prodigy, he’s been living without direction since abandoning his musical dreams. Now into his thirties, having retreated from every opportunity he’s had to level up, he has lost his family, his best friend, and his own self-respect. But Joe finds an unlikely path to redemption when he starts working as a carpenter for the bohemian conceptual artist October Danko. The job returns him to his hometown, loaded with bittersweet reminders of his former life, in the shadows of his beloved redwood trees. As Joe’s relationship with October develops, he yearns to take a daring step toward a bold future, but struggles to escape the craven decisions of his past. Sorrow is a stunning, moving novel that explores masculinity and suspended adolescence, all the while begging the questions: Can courage be learned? And is it ever too late to follow your heart?

30 review for Sorrow

  1. 4 out of 5

    Jessica | JustReadingJess

    Sorrow is a very unique and difficult love story. I have been very excited to read Sorrow, since I heard Tiffanie DeBartolo was writing another book. I have read and loved all of her books and Sorrow did not disappoint. Sorrow was one of those books where I couldn’t wait to find out how it ended but also didn’t want it to end. Sorrow is filled with emotion, heartbreak, music, and art. Sorrow is one of those unique stories where I didn’t like any of the characters, but loved the story and cannot t Sorrow is a very unique and difficult love story. I have been very excited to read Sorrow, since I heard Tiffanie DeBartolo was writing another book. I have read and loved all of her books and Sorrow did not disappoint. Sorrow was one of those books where I couldn’t wait to find out how it ended but also didn’t want it to end. Sorrow is filled with emotion, heartbreak, music, and art. Sorrow is one of those unique stories where I didn’t like any of the characters, but loved the story and cannot think of any way it could’ve been better. Thank you NetGalley and Woodhall Press for Sorrow. Full Review: https://justreadingjess.wordpress.com...

  2. 5 out of 5

    Camilla

    You can just tell that this author and Tarryn Fisher are BFFs. I'm very glad that Tiffanie DeBartolo is back, because her writing style is so unique and I find it extremely enjoyable. However, I think that this story had some fundamental issues, just like God-Shaped Hole did. Sorrow is about Joe, a lonely man who has missed too many opportunities in life and is overall unsatisfied. We follow pretty much his entire life, so this is almost a character study. The two other protagonists are October, You can just tell that this author and Tarryn Fisher are BFFs. I'm very glad that Tiffanie DeBartolo is back, because her writing style is so unique and I find it extremely enjoyable. However, I think that this story had some fundamental issues, just like God-Shaped Hole did. Sorrow is about Joe, a lonely man who has missed too many opportunities in life and is overall unsatisfied. We follow pretty much his entire life, so this is almost a character study. The two other protagonists are October, an artist that he works for, and Cal, his childhood best friend. I know that DeBartolo pours her heart out while she's writing, and it definitely shows. Her books are filled with a lot of soul and it's a pretty unique experience. However, I think that I've seen this plot before way too many times and I felt like the conflict was awfully handled. Joe was such a coward, I couldn't even root for him to have a happy ending. Also, it took me over a week to finish this, because the second half dragged on plot points that I didn't think were necessary. I'm still glad that I read this, and I'd definitely recommend if you enjoy hard hitting fiction with lots of art and music references. (NetGalley ARC)

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer Kyle

    4.5 Stars A very poignant read!! However, the hero was hard to love.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Sharon ∞❥ is an emotional book junkie ❥∞

    4 ⭐'s Nothing has quite shook me as much as God-Shaped Hole and I knew that I would have to read (almost) any of Tiffanie DeBartolo's books after that. She hasn't released a book for a while so I was hoping for a doozy. And...it was good but not great. Right from the beginning, there's a very similar set up to a video by a real performance artist: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mEcqo... and if you want more background on it, watch this one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Sslx...) and while this 4 ⭐'s Nothing has quite shook me as much as God-Shaped Hole and I knew that I would have to read (almost) any of Tiffanie DeBartolo's books after that. She hasn't released a book for a while so I was hoping for a doozy. And...it was good but not great. Right from the beginning, there's a very similar set up to a video by a real performance artist: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mEcqo... and if you want more background on it, watch this one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Sslx...) and while this book certainly deviates from it, It still bothered me even though I understand how people are influenced. The only thing I can think of is that I find Marina Abramović's story so emotional and sacred . On to the story...Joe meets October when he interviews to be her assistant. She lives in the forest and he has a fondness for trees. He grew up in the area and it gives him a calmness that he sorely needs. October can pick up people's feelings by touching them so she likes to be isolated like Joe. She's a performance artist and I was intrigued by her works. The book jumps around in the timeline from when Joe was twelve to the present when he is thirty-seven. We found out some drama that happened to his family and how deeply it affected him, how he started playing the guitar and met his best friend, Cal. It was hard to connect with Joe. He calls himself an asshole and he's right about that but mainly I think he is damaged and just needed a lot of time to heal. His connection to October really helps him. The twist caught me off guard and I loved it and hated it all at the same time. I knew that the author would twist the knife deep and that the angst would drag on. (Yay!) But the animals...OMG! This author really does her homework. We learn a lot about art, guitars and trees and she made it flow so easily. However, I never understand why authors like to use uncommon words (although some of those types of words are a part of the book) in the story. It is a pet peeve of mine but thank goodness for the kindle dictionary! And sadly, there is no epilogue (another pet peeve) and that is no bueño. (And just fyi, it's nowhere as angsty as God-Shaped Hole.)

  5. 5 out of 5

    Teresa

    Wow. Just wow. I started this book last night at bedtime and finished it this morning. I haven’t been this moved by a story in quite a while. This book was speaking to me with its story of the multi-talented, thirty-seven-year-old Joe Harper, and his misdirected life. This is a story of the loss, grief, fear, and self-doubt that thwarted one man’s destiny, crippling him to such a degree that he was unable to make the right choices for a rewarding life. “Everyone is always one decision away from Wow. Just wow. I started this book last night at bedtime and finished it this morning. I haven’t been this moved by a story in quite a while. This book was speaking to me with its story of the multi-talented, thirty-seven-year-old Joe Harper, and his misdirected life. This is a story of the loss, grief, fear, and self-doubt that thwarted one man’s destiny, crippling him to such a degree that he was unable to make the right choices for a rewarding life. “Everyone is always one decision away from a completely different life.” Cal Callahan I get it. Haven’t we all struggled in some way with thinking, what if I had made that particular choice; to go to that school, marry that person, break up with that person, take that job, quit that job, travel the world? I think you get the idea. Unfortunately, Joe always made safe choices, and in the end, he was left with nothing and no one. “Art and love.” October Danko This is also a love story. Yes, a love story between a man and a woman, and although a large part of the book it is not the main focus. This is about the love that Joe finds for himself, for the belief that he finds in himself. For “art and love.” Joe also loves trees; he loves the majestic redwoods which play a major part in the book. The parallel of these mighty trees taking so long to reach their enormous heights to Joe taking so long to come into his own was a beautiful comparison. The author has woven a story I will not be able to forget, the mark of an excellent book. I am so happy I had the opportunity to read this remarkable coming-of-age, later-in-life story. Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher. I recommend this book to everyone and I gave it five fabulous stars!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Carlene Inspired

    Find this review and others at Carlene Inspired. I have tried to write this review several times, but I don't know how to put in words what this book meant to me. As a reader, it's a relatable story of love, loss, and life's lessons. As a human, it's a book about humanity, the art of living, and going after what you want in spite of it all. It's not even fair to call this just a romance, when Sorrow is so much more and it is apparent that Tiffanie DeBartolo put so much into it. Poignant, difficul Find this review and others at Carlene Inspired. I have tried to write this review several times, but I don't know how to put in words what this book meant to me. As a reader, it's a relatable story of love, loss, and life's lessons. As a human, it's a book about humanity, the art of living, and going after what you want in spite of it all. It's not even fair to call this just a romance, when Sorrow is so much more and it is apparent that Tiffanie DeBartolo put so much into it. Poignant, difficult, beautiful...there are so many words that can describe this read. It's not the rainbow and butterflies sort of love story with a tiny bit of drama the characters get through. This is main character Joe's story of life and letdowns and how they compiled into several losses that feel so great. It's the story of a man blowing like a leaf in the wind, unable to form roots like the tree he loves. Joe isn't immediately likeable, but then again, a lot of people aren't when you peel back the layers. Joe Harper is real, his story is authentic, and in all its messiness, Sorrow is a work of art that I could not put down. Like God-Shaped Hole, Sorrow is existential literature, with Tiffanie DeBartolo's words taking Joe on a journey to figure out who he really is and what he's alive for. It's the kind of book you just have to pick up and start reading, you won't be let down. ARC provided.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Rosalinda *KRASNORADA*

    I can't freaking wait!!! I can't freaking wait!!!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

    Sorrow is my second book by this author. I would categorize this book as literary fiction. The narrator is 37 year old Joseph/Joe Harper (1st person POV). Joe loves trees (hence the cover). And he loves playing the guitar (and he is really good). This book is very character driven, which made for an interesting change. It is about friendship and love. Part of the story is about a female artist named October. And part is about Joe's childhood best friend Cal. The book starts out in Whitefish, Montan Sorrow is my second book by this author. I would categorize this book as literary fiction. The narrator is 37 year old Joseph/Joe Harper (1st person POV). Joe loves trees (hence the cover). And he loves playing the guitar (and he is really good). This book is very character driven, which made for an interesting change. It is about friendship and love. Part of the story is about a female artist named October. And part is about Joe's childhood best friend Cal. The book starts out in Whitefish, Montana. Joe sees an email about an art exhibit. And that gets him to thinking about his past. This is a hard book for me to rate. I really enjoyed everything to do with October. And I did find the stuff with Cal to be compelling. But it took me a while to truly become invested in the story. At first I wasn't sure if it was because of how the story was told. There is a lot of retelling (in fact most of the book is Joe looking back on things that happened to him in his past). And honestly I am not used to books being written this way.  I definitely do read a lot of past/present stories. But they are more clearly set out that way.  Like it is obvious because it will say "then" and "now". Or the time periods are listed. But here we have Joe in the present. And he retells most of the main parts of the story.  The last part of the book was my favorite. We were in the present. And I really wasn't sure what Joe was going to do. But I was very intrigued by what he ended up doing. Also I liked seeing him try to grow. The cover and title are definitely perfect for this book. And I absolutely loved Joe's list of new words. And how they were worked into the story. Overall, Joe was such a complex and intriguing character. And I liked going on his journey. This was such a thought-provoking book. And the more I think about it the more I like it. Thanks to netgalley and Woodhall Press for allowing me to read this book.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Erica Russikoff

    Have you ever read a book that affected you so much, you feel it's changed you forever? Have you ever read words that you know touched your soul? Have you ever finished reading a story and knew it would be a reread ten times over? For me, this is Tiffanie DeBartolo's Sorrow. This book is magic. Its themes include music, nature, art, friendship, and love. So, really, unless you are a dispassionate beast of a person, you'll find something to relate to in this novel. It's not a romance, although th Have you ever read a book that affected you so much, you feel it's changed you forever? Have you ever read words that you know touched your soul? Have you ever finished reading a story and knew it would be a reread ten times over? For me, this is Tiffanie DeBartolo's Sorrow. This book is magic. Its themes include music, nature, art, friendship, and love. So, really, unless you are a dispassionate beast of a person, you'll find something to relate to in this novel. It's not a romance, although there is a romantic relationship in it. The beauty of this book is that it can't be categorized. The story is told from a man's POV—Joe Harper's—and it is his journey and his growth you witness firsthand. The other characters, while significant and vibrant, are in the periphery. The language in this book is stunning. So many lines are so perfectly written and should be highlighted. There were many times when I'd read something and think, "Wow." Everyday words are woven into something magnetic and unforgettable. Tiffanie also includes some new terms. Words that will likely be tattooed on people's bodies because of how evocative they are. You should know going in that because this is a Tiffanie book, the characters aren't cookie cutters or perfect. They're flawed and, at times, damaged. But even through these not-always-likable individuals, you find perfection because they represent what is real, not what we wish to be real. On a personal note, I have to say, this is one of the best books I've ever read. Maybe it was a matter of reading it at the right time, but the story hit me hard. There was something so honest and, therefore, so moving about it. I hope that come October, you experience the same. It's unlike anything I've ever read before, which makes it truly unique and truly, breathtakingly beautiful.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Emma

    The ARC of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I jumped at the opportunity to read Tiffanie DeBartolo's new book because in the past I enjoyed her previous works very much. Maybe that's why I expected more from this read, it was a nice book, but nothing more for me. I didn't particularly feel the chemistry between the main couple and was much more interested in Joe's past with Cal, something I wish we could have seen more of. Also, the book mov The ARC of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I jumped at the opportunity to read Tiffanie DeBartolo's new book because in the past I enjoyed her previous works very much. Maybe that's why I expected more from this read, it was a nice book, but nothing more for me. I didn't particularly feel the chemistry between the main couple and was much more interested in Joe's past with Cal, something I wish we could have seen more of. Also, the book moves at quite a slow pace and the end left a lot to be desired in my opinion. It's a short novel and so I believe the ending could have been explored further. I appreciated Joe's growth in the novel, but I didn't particularly feel for him, especially towards the end, I didn't like the decisions he made. In this novel there's also a magical realism element, but it's just hinted at, which is truly a shame since it could have played a much bigger role in the story. Overall it was a nice read, but it didn't particularly catch my interest.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Ellen ✦ Book Bellas ✦

    4.5 BEAUTIFUL STARS “Everyone is always one decision away from a completely different life.” Tiffanie DeBartolo has created magic once again. An angsty, beautiful book, 'Sorrow' is about flawed, damaged characters who may not always be likeable but always seem real. The main protagonist Joe has not lived up to his potential in life and seems to be hiding out both from his emotions and from responsibilities. The setting is a main part of this book, and beautiful Northern California serves a 4.5 BEAUTIFUL STARS “Everyone is always one decision away from a completely different life.” Tiffanie DeBartolo has created magic once again. An angsty, beautiful book, 'Sorrow' is about flawed, damaged characters who may not always be likeable but always seem real. The main protagonist Joe has not lived up to his potential in life and seems to be hiding out both from his emotions and from responsibilities. The setting is a main part of this book, and beautiful Northern California serves as a gorgeous backdrop to the story. October was fascinating. A performance artist, she lives an authentic life and encourages Joe to do the same. She really lives her art and through her, Joe feels emboldened to return to his musical roots. October teaches Joe that it is really never too late to follow one's passion in life and how vital it is to remain true to yourself. There is another main character rounding out this book but anything more would spoil this review. 'Sorrow' is best read without knowing too much of the plot. If you are a fan of the author's previous books, then you will love this one. 'God-Shaped Hole' is one of my all-time favorites and I am a fan for life of Ms. DeBartolo! She recently said that one of her favorite words is ‘saudade’, which means a feeling of deep longing, melancholy, or nostalgia, and that feeling describes my emotions while reading this book. 'Sorrow' is perfect for those who love books mixing art and music and the deep emotions they both inspire. This book is a beautiful reminder to always live your life to the fullest.

  12. 5 out of 5

    ❄️ Antonella ❄️

    OMG it has a release date!!! 🤩 10.20.20!!! I've been waiting literally eons for this one, I'm legit in tears 😭😭😭 2020 is saved! OMG it has a release date!!! 🤩 10.20.20!!! I've been waiting literally eons for this one, I'm legit in tears 😭😭😭 2020 is saved!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Teresa

    Wow. Just wow. I started this book last night at bedtime and finished it this morning. I haven’t been this moved by a story in quite a while. This book was speaking to me with its story of the multi-talented, thirty-seven-year-old Joe Harper, and his misdirected life. This is a story of the loss, grief, fear, and self-doubt that thwarted one man’s destiny, crippling him to be unable to make the right choices for a rewarding life. “Everyone is always one decision away from a completely different l Wow. Just wow. I started this book last night at bedtime and finished it this morning. I haven’t been this moved by a story in quite a while. This book was speaking to me with its story of the multi-talented, thirty-seven-year-old Joe Harper, and his misdirected life. This is a story of the loss, grief, fear, and self-doubt that thwarted one man’s destiny, crippling him to be unable to make the right choices for a rewarding life. “Everyone is always one decision away from a completely different life.” Cal Callahan I get it. Haven’t we all struggled in some way with thinking, what if I had made that particular choice; to go to that school, marry that person, break up with that person, take that job, quit that job, travel the world? I think you get the idea. Unfortunately, Joe always made the safe choices and in the end, he was left with nothing and no one. “Art and love.” October Danko This is also a love story. Yes, a love story between a man and a woman, and although a large part of the book it is not the main focus. This is about the love that Joe finds for himself, for the belief that he finds in himself. For “art and love.” Joe also loves trees; he loves the majestic redwoods which play a major part in the book. The parallel of these mighty trees taking so long to reach their enormous heights to Joe taking so long to come into his own was a beautiful comparison. The author has woven a story I will not be able to forget, the mark of an excellent book. I am so happy I had the opportunity to read this remarkable coming-of-age, later-in-life story. Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher. I recommend this book to everyone and I gave it five fabulous stars!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Lezel Malazarte

    I love you, Tiffanie DeBartolo. I will read anything you write.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Michele

    4 1/2 Stars.... Wow!! Tiffanie DeBartolo has such a unique and beautiful writing style. When I saw this book was being released, I was eager to read it. I was. not disappointed. It's not a noticeably flashy or dramatic book, but yet it felt like just the right mix of "everything." Our main character, Joe Harper has struggled with various issues throughout his entire life. He often solves his problems by walking away and trying to leave them behind. He has experienced some major losses during h 4 1/2 Stars.... Wow!! Tiffanie DeBartolo has such a unique and beautiful writing style. When I saw this book was being released, I was eager to read it. I was. not disappointed. It's not a noticeably flashy or dramatic book, but yet it felt like just the right mix of "everything." Our main character, Joe Harper has struggled with various issues throughout his entire life. He often solves his problems by walking away and trying to leave them behind. He has experienced some major losses during his lifetime and it's obvious that he really hasn't fully processed them. Sadly, it seems to creep into all of his subsequent relationships and undermine his confidence and sense of worthiness. Sorrow isn't an easy book to read. The characters involved, primarily Joe and October both feel things very intensely. Joe tries to bury his emotions while October's are always present somewhere in her art. When Joe finds his way back to music, he is able to let some of his emotions out as well. However, he is continually battling guilt - - in all aspects of his life. It's as if he refuses to let himself be happy. This book felt like a character study combined with a romance. It may not be everyone's cuppa, but I really enjoyed it. Ms. DeBartolo is talented at creating characters so thoroughly that you can feel their emotions and insecurities. As frustrated as I was with some of Joe's decisions. I was so "in his head" that I could somewhat understand why he did things. Sorrow is aptly named as it is such a pivotal focus throughout much of this story in various ways. The words definitely spoke directly to my heart. Thank you to NetGalley, the publisher and Ms. DeBartolo for this ARC. I chose to voluntarily review it and the opinions contained within are my own. “Everyone is always one decision away from a completely different life.”

  16. 4 out of 5

    Daniele

    The moment I finished this book tears filled my eyes. This book is art in itself. Creating art. Becoming art. Breathing art. When I opened this book and began, I knew little of Joe and October and of the trees, what I didn’t expect, but truly knew was going to happen for my soul to become part of this book. Tiffanie has this was to pull you in; with how the character speaks to you in this book, how Joe tells you his story, his faults and weaknesses it’s speaks directly to you and you feel it all. The moment I finished this book tears filled my eyes. This book is art in itself. Creating art. Becoming art. Breathing art. When I opened this book and began, I knew little of Joe and October and of the trees, what I didn’t expect, but truly knew was going to happen for my soul to become part of this book. Tiffanie has this was to pull you in; with how the character speaks to you in this book, how Joe tells you his story, his faults and weaknesses it’s speaks directly to you and you feel it all. You feel the pull when October sees him. You feel the pull when you meet Cal. This book takes you on this journey into a heart of man who belongs amongst the trees but fights what he wants over doubt. It’s feelings we can all relate to in one form of another. This is a journey of discovery. It’s about seeing connection is this pull we might not even know is happening all around us. Tiffanie once again has given us this brilliant masterpiece, this book will stay within me forever.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Chelé-----4 The Love of Books

    Tiffanie has such a distinctive way of writing. It's so unique and whimsical, strong and defining. I found myself pulled into a story that was completely enthralling. Joe is wandering. Wandering through life, his decisions, or lack thereof and his choices. I feel like this is a testament to Tiffanie's writing because I usually need some sort of connection with the main character in order to hold my interest and unfortunately Joe and I did not vibe, however the story itself is so strong that it k Tiffanie has such a distinctive way of writing. It's so unique and whimsical, strong and defining. I found myself pulled into a story that was completely enthralling. Joe is wandering. Wandering through life, his decisions, or lack thereof and his choices. I feel like this is a testament to Tiffanie's writing because I usually need some sort of connection with the main character in order to hold my interest and unfortunately Joe and I did not vibe, however the story itself is so strong that it kept me interested. October is one of the most interesting characters I have ever read, the words she chooses, the choices she makes, the way she lives her life, it was so fascinating. She's very eccentric and intuitive. October is a conceptual artist, but she's so much more than that, she does installations, live art,  she can draw, paint and everything around her inspires her. Her art is real and transparent and raw. Cal is Joe's best friend, they're actually more like  brothers because they met each other at a time in their lives where things weren't the best, they needed each other, they balanced each other and it's the kind of frienship that even if you don't speak everyday or for awhile you can always pick back up right where you left off. There's so much to spoil with Sorrow so I'll stop there. Sorrow is purposeful, it's beautiful and phenomenal, it definitely made me think and and brought out certain emotions, Tiffanie DeBartolo is truly exceptional!

  18. 5 out of 5

    Abbie

    This might be my favorite book of the year. Definite top 3. Review coming soon...

  19. 5 out of 5

    Jeanne

    I started out hoping this was going to be short because instead of reading on my Kindle I had to read on a big and clunky tablet. Well it was short and it was amazing, the kind of book that will be read over and over again to reveal more layers of the story. Joe is deeply affected by the death of his brother Sam, so much so that he doesn't speak for years. He takes up the guitar and becomes quite good and one day while playing in the woods he meets Cal. They become Blood Brothers and vow to move I started out hoping this was going to be short because instead of reading on my Kindle I had to read on a big and clunky tablet. Well it was short and it was amazing, the kind of book that will be read over and over again to reveal more layers of the story. Joe is deeply affected by the death of his brother Sam, so much so that he doesn't speak for years. He takes up the guitar and becomes quite good and one day while playing in the woods he meets Cal. They become Blood Brothers and vow to move to Brooklyn and become famous. Joe takes the easy way out by going to Berkeley and working for his father. He loses touch with Cal who does become famous. After working for his dad for a while he quits and eventually he takes a job as an artist's assistant. October is a performance artist who is a bit of an empath. Being around too many people can be overwhelming so she prefers her art and her solitude. The writing is very lyrical and sensual. Joe has a love of trees, specifically redwoods, and there are many hikes in the forest where you can imagine the light shining through the giant redwoods, the smells of the leaves on the ground and the mustiness of the dirt. Then there are the guitars, how each has a tone and a story to it and almost inspires him to play. I didn't understand a lot about October's art but she was multi-layered. Even though she was an artist she was wrapped up in her creations but looked out at the world and tried to experience it. This is a story of love and chances not taken. Joe's MO is to stay safe and not care too much. But sometimes you have to take a stand and make a choice even though someone will get hurt. At one point Cal sends him an email telling him that people are one decision away from a different life. The question is Can Joe make the right decision? Thank you to Netgalley and Woodhall Press for providing me a copy of this book.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Cielle Taaffe

    The way Tiffanie DeBartolo's movie 'Dream for an Insomniac' spoke to me in high school, and 'How to Kill a Rockstar' and 'God Shaped Hole' reached me in my 20s, 'Sorrow' was the perfect book to connect to in my 30s. The novel is poetic, with intriguing characters, and a believable, exciting romance. Watching Joe's relationships with the other characters unfold is captivating and entrancing. And the subplots, or subcharacters of Art, Music, and the Redwood Forests make a beautiful backdrop as ever The way Tiffanie DeBartolo's movie 'Dream for an Insomniac' spoke to me in high school, and 'How to Kill a Rockstar' and 'God Shaped Hole' reached me in my 20s, 'Sorrow' was the perfect book to connect to in my 30s. The novel is poetic, with intriguing characters, and a believable, exciting romance. Watching Joe's relationships with the other characters unfold is captivating and entrancing. And the subplots, or subcharacters of Art, Music, and the Redwood Forests make a beautiful backdrop as everything unfolds.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Jamie

    This was my first Tiffanie DeBartolo book and I loved it. I will definitely be looking for more of her work. Sorrow follows Joe who sort of aimlessly wonders around in life. Just playing it safe. He pushes away friend and family and has just no direction in his life. Joe then takes a job as a carpenter and meets October Danko. As their relationship progresses, Joe begins taking steps towards the future and has a change of heart about life. I really enjoyed this book. I loved the writing style. I This was my first Tiffanie DeBartolo book and I loved it. I will definitely be looking for more of her work. Sorrow follows Joe who sort of aimlessly wonders around in life. Just playing it safe. He pushes away friend and family and has just no direction in his life. Joe then takes a job as a carpenter and meets October Danko. As their relationship progresses, Joe begins taking steps towards the future and has a change of heart about life. I really enjoyed this book. I loved the writing style. I loved Joe and October's relationship and how they grew together. Thanks to Books Forward PR for my gifted copy.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Laura Brown

    “There’s no such thing as inaction, Joe. There’s only choice and consequence.” Everyone has those moments they remember so vividly because they shaped your future, for better or for worse. You are a victim of circumstance, you may say, or should have handled that differently. Or perhaps you say something similar to that was the best thing I’ve ever done. This book explores the consequences of choice, whether it’s to be involved, emotionally, physically, or mentally, with a situation or to check “There’s no such thing as inaction, Joe. There’s only choice and consequence.” Everyone has those moments they remember so vividly because they shaped your future, for better or for worse. You are a victim of circumstance, you may say, or should have handled that differently. Or perhaps you say something similar to that was the best thing I’ve ever done. This book explores the consequences of choice, whether it’s to be involved, emotionally, physically, or mentally, with a situation or to check out and make no choice at all. Perhaps you will relate to running from your choices or jumping in with all your intentions on display. Perhaps the musicality of Tiffanie’s words will resound with you and you will feel the music Joe describes rise in your soul while he plays or shares his feelings. Maybe you will weep or laugh along with all the emotions and inspirations October shares. Perhaps all these things will occur, as they did for me, while reading Sorrow. I loved the layers of art added in to the words on the pages. I loved that this book made me want to explore the Redwoods and listen to live music so I could feel the notes like the musician does. Mainly, though, I loved this book because the characters are real in their challenges. Their strengths and weaknesses and passion were incredibly relatable yet so new feeling because their emotions read as so honest. Flawed. Unsure of their way but finding their steps. This book was raw and beautiful and inspiring. It touched my artistic soul on so many letters and pulled me in with every page. It left me unsure of how things would play out, dying to figure out where the characters would land at the end, and still wanting to savor each page and not rush the story, because you can’t rush art. Tiffanie DeBartolo writes characters that seem so real and fully dimensional and these particular characters were her best yet for me. This is a definite must read so you can discuss this beautiful book with others. And maybe create some art of your own.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Shelley

    A new book by Tiffanie DeBartolo was a bright spot in this tumultuous year. With a book titled Sorrow, I knew that there was a high probability that this would put my emotions through the wringer, but I wouldn’t expect anything less from this author. It’s a love story, an ode to nature, music, and art in its many forms. It’s a beautifully written story that is both profound and thought-provoking. There were so many thoughtful and heartfelt passages that I wanted to highlight and share, but to be A new book by Tiffanie DeBartolo was a bright spot in this tumultuous year. With a book titled Sorrow, I knew that there was a high probability that this would put my emotions through the wringer, but I wouldn’t expect anything less from this author. It’s a love story, an ode to nature, music, and art in its many forms. It’s a beautifully written story that is both profound and thought-provoking. There were so many thoughtful and heartfelt passages that I wanted to highlight and share, but to be honest, it’s so much better to discover them and relish them on your own. Sorrow is not the type of story to read if you’re just trying to pass some time. It’s deeply moving, rich in emotion. It’s a novel that needs to be savored. I was pulled into the story immediately. I was drawn to Joe Harper. He intrigued me, piqued my interest, and I wanted to know him and the reasons why he was so heavy hearted and melancholy. He was insecure, broken, lost. Haunted by his choices and decisions, he had a multitude of regrets for his missed opportunities and his lack of courage to go after what he desired most in life. I wanted to simultaneously hug him, shake him, and push him in the right direction, but ultimately, I just wanted him to find peace and happiness. I loved the connection between the characters. The feelings and emotions were palpable. I was immersed in the story, a witness to the thoughts, intimacies, and lives of the characters. Joe and October’s relationship felt authentic. They were flawed, passionate, and realistic. Their love story wasn’t an easy one. It was messy and complicated, and I wouldn’t have wanted to read it any other way. It never felt guaranteed. Throughout the novel I was never completely at ease or assured that everything was going to work out for them. Their relationship had many bumps in the road, and I was simply happy to be along with them for the journey. Sorrow was an unforgettable reading experience. *I received a copy of the book from the publisher (via NetGalley).

  24. 5 out of 5

    Lindsey Domokur of Crazy Reader Chicks

    Have you ever not went after something you wanted because you were scared? Scared of failure, scared you aren't good enough? I have been there. This book is about courage. This book is about second chances, and third chances and becoming who you were meant to be. We stumble along the way, we hurt other people, we hurt ourselves, but in the end we either find the courage or we don't. Living scared is no way to live. Opening yourself up to the possibility of failing, of being hurt, that is courage Have you ever not went after something you wanted because you were scared? Scared of failure, scared you aren't good enough? I have been there. This book is about courage. This book is about second chances, and third chances and becoming who you were meant to be. We stumble along the way, we hurt other people, we hurt ourselves, but in the end we either find the courage or we don't. Living scared is no way to live. Opening yourself up to the possibility of failing, of being hurt, that is courage. The courage to find the strength to come back from all of it a better person. Joe was all of these things and I bet a lot of us could see ourselves in him. This story was told from his POV, which I loved. There was art in the book and art in the words. Joe was scared, he was scared of failure so he never went after his dreams. Joe runs. Joe ran from Cal, Joe ran from October. Joe ran from every single thing before it got hard, before he knew if he would even fail or not. This book was short, but it took me twice as long to finish. I took hours reading every word because each was deeper than the next. I have a confession, this is my first book by Tiffanie. I own almost all of them but have been too scared to read them because of the depth of emotions I knew I would feel. I'm so glad I started with this book because it was so profound. I needed this book in my life, we all do. Just as a reminder to be brave, have courage to do what is in your heart, but most of all, never run away from those who love you most.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Kindle Crack Book Reviews Cheri

    Joe Harper is a work in progress. He takes a job as an assistant set-maker with a world-renowned performance artist, October Danko. Joe finds himself back in his California hometown, where he grew up surrounded by the redwood trees and trails he has always been enamored with throughout his life. Unlike the redwood trees he is obsessed with, he can't seem to find the courage to plant his own roots and branch out. Joe is so full of regret and sorrow that he can't find happiness within himself. Whe Joe Harper is a work in progress. He takes a job as an assistant set-maker with a world-renowned performance artist, October Danko. Joe finds himself back in his California hometown, where he grew up surrounded by the redwood trees and trails he has always been enamored with throughout his life. Unlike the redwood trees he is obsessed with, he can't seem to find the courage to plant his own roots and branch out. Joe is so full of regret and sorrow that he can't find happiness within himself. When he finally seems to find the courage to lead him to the right trail in life, his world starts to resemble a forest fire. While reading this book, I felt like I was part of Joe and October's complex story and was deeply involved in their own emotional performance art exhibition. As the reader, you are in for a journey of he(art) and soul set to a backdrop of art, music, and the beauty of Muir Woods.  You should go into this book knowing your own takeaway is truly the experience of Tiffanie's storytelling art. I lived and breathed the words and worlds of Joe and October. Reading Sorrow was a unique and galvanizing experience. You might dislike Joe or even October at times. Think of them as a work in progress. One-click Sorrow on October 20th.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Rachiebo

    First off I have never received a book from net galley which I am so incredibly thrilled to have gotten this one. I love Tiffany DeBartolo and her books they’re so inspiring and it’s almost like they carve open your soul and dig deep down inside to see what you’re really made of. They open you up and make you feel every ounce of the characters being. I was so drawn to these characters first of all Joe Harper because he is the type of man who seems like he is running from his life. And I can relat First off I have never received a book from net galley which I am so incredibly thrilled to have gotten this one. I love Tiffany DeBartolo and her books they’re so inspiring and it’s almost like they carve open your soul and dig deep down inside to see what you’re really made of. They open you up and make you feel every ounce of the characters being. I was so drawn to these characters first of all Joe Harper because he is the type of man who seems like he is running from his life. And I can relate to that in some ways. Life is scary. I craved October because she’s the friend that I’ve always wanted artsy inspirational and almost like a kindred soul to where you always want to be in her presence. I’ve never wanted to read a book more slowly just to soak up every ounce of it. This book was so thoughtful and touching. This was my favorite book this year.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Stacy

    4.5 stars I didn’t realize how much I had missed reading a Tiffanie DeBartolo book. I just love her writing, it blows me away. Every. Single. Time. Her writing has depth and meaning and I love feeling the emotions when a read. Sorrow was a beautifully written love story. There were moments of heartbreak and sadness though, but I think I’ve experienced this in every book I’ve read by Tiffanie, she blends the two emotions perfectly. I would highly recommend Sorrow to any DeBartolo fans, you won’t be 4.5 stars I didn’t realize how much I had missed reading a Tiffanie DeBartolo book. I just love her writing, it blows me away. Every. Single. Time. Her writing has depth and meaning and I love feeling the emotions when a read. Sorrow was a beautifully written love story. There were moments of heartbreak and sadness though, but I think I’ve experienced this in every book I’ve read by Tiffanie, she blends the two emotions perfectly. I would highly recommend Sorrow to any DeBartolo fans, you won’t be disappointed! I can’t wait to have this beauty in print once it’s released ***Thank you Netgalley for an ARC copy in return for an honest review***

  28. 4 out of 5

    Dee Montoya

    3.5 Stars*** I’m a HUGE Tiffanie DeBartolo fan, so you know I’ve been waiting to read Sorrow like a kid waits for Christmas morning. I wanted to take my time, read it slowly, savor every word. In the past her novels have altered something inside me, the made a positive impact in my life, they are like tattoos inside my heart. Unfortunately for me with Sorrow that wasn’t the case. Not to say that I didn’t enjoy it, I did. The setting of the book is very rich, I enjoyed the art aspect in the story, 3.5 Stars*** I’m a HUGE Tiffanie DeBartolo fan, so you know I’ve been waiting to read Sorrow like a kid waits for Christmas morning. I wanted to take my time, read it slowly, savor every word. In the past her novels have altered something inside me, the made a positive impact in my life, they are like tattoos inside my heart. Unfortunately for me with Sorrow that wasn’t the case. Not to say that I didn’t enjoy it, I did. The setting of the book is very rich, I enjoyed the art aspect in the story, and the Dog, Diego was just the cutest character. But I honestly couldn’t connect with the characters or their love story. Joseph Harper didn’t have the greatest childhood and it turned into someone who is always scared. He’s a flake when it comes to big commitments in life. He’s a very talented musician but he doesn’t believe he’s worthy of any type of recognition or even a chance so he’s never really tried to pursue his musical career. Always running away from something or someone Joe ends up taking a job as the second assistant to a very talented artist, October. October is a very skilled artist, her ability to feel and see life in a much deeper way, pushes her to create very unique art. From the moment she met Joe she was able to see through his soul; she could feel his pain, his sorrows and his flaws and she was completely captivated by him. They quickly develop a friendship that later turns into something much more, the problem is October has a boyfriend. There’s a bit of a love triangle but the main issue in the story is Joe’s inability to face head on any conflict, he’s a big coward. I guess my main disconnect in the story was Joe, and didn’t really understood him, I wasn’t able to relate to him in any way, I mostly wanted to slap him in at least half the chapters. I did love Cal but probably because I have a thing for musicians but also he was a very fun character and other than Diego the dog, Cal and Joe’s friendship was my favorite thing about the book. I waited a couple of weeks after I read the book to post my review, because I really wanted to assess my feelings towards the book, but sadly I realized I had almost forgotten the story, I couldn’t even remember the characters names, I had to go look. This is the first time I read a forgettable book by this author. I guess what I’m trying to say is that I liked it but I didn’t love it like I thought I would. Not that this will ever persuade me from reading another one of her books again.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Natalie

    We have a date people! 10;10;20..😁😁😁😁👏👏👏👏👏🙌🙌🙌🙌

  30. 4 out of 5

    ReadingTilTheBreakOfDawn

    Sorrow is the perfect fall book. It is pure nature, art, life, music and relationships. While you may want to try to classify this book, I don't think it's that easily done. It's not a romance. It's not women's fiction. It's a work of art is what it is. There is a friendship and relationships and family storyline all tied into this piece. There is a past and a present and using both of those aspects to help push the main character forward. It is what makes Sorrow so beautifully told. This story Sorrow is the perfect fall book. It is pure nature, art, life, music and relationships. While you may want to try to classify this book, I don't think it's that easily done. It's not a romance. It's not women's fiction. It's a work of art is what it is. There is a friendship and relationships and family storyline all tied into this piece. There is a past and a present and using both of those aspects to help push the main character forward. It is what makes Sorrow so beautifully told. This story is told completely from Joe's POV. We get to feel what being him is like and the decisions he makes. He has good intentions, but his feelings run rampant and it's almost as if he cares (and thinks) too much. He never wants to hurt anyone. And with that, he hurts everyone, including himself. Through him I found so much beauty in nature, music and art. I saw beauty in sadness and sadness in beauty. I'm just thankful that Tiffanie Debartolo did not shatter my heart with this one. But she did crack it and perhaps made something better. While Joe was our main character, we couldn't have followed him on his journey without October and Cal. A bit of his past and present. Two people that shaped him in ways he could never expect. Having these characters balanced him and offered him insight and growth into the person he could and would become. I really enjoyed this book and the ride it took me on. I felt apart of it by being able to see the places I've traveled to and lived. This book read like an ode to the Bay(ish) area. The nature and art and the people in it. I already can't wait to read this book again. It really felt like I got into the soul of the writer and her world. Put this one on your TBR, guys! It's simply art in writing.

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