About Me I am a retired librarian and I now support books and authors through my reviews.

I have always loved to read and I was able to share that love through my work as a public librarian for 22 1/2 years. I now promote literacy by reading, and then writing reviews. I love to support authors by sharing my reviews with others!

Wednesday, May 10, 2023

Petunia 1949 by Leah Brewer: Review with HFVBT Blog Tours

Petunia 1949 by Leah Brewer

Publication Date: May 1, 2023

Genre: Historical Fiction

Spitfire, Petunia Hollings was born in 1935 in the deep South. She spends her childhood working the cotton fields and longing for her daddy to love her as he does her siblings.

Spending time with her best friend Opal is one distraction Petunia looks forward to. Opal’s skin color was never a problem. Or so Petunia thought.

After young love sweeps Petunia to a new life in Chicago, she learns to accept love as it’s offered instead of expecting more than one can give.

When circumstances force her to return home, her friendship with Opal helps Petunia's fractured heart start to heal.

Then a new, even more dangerous threat surfaces. Will Petunia find the strength to overcome the hatred surrounding her?



This book is considered historical fiction because it covers so many relevant topics of the 1950s and 1960s decades, followed by a satisfying epilogue occurring in 1973. Yes, it is definitely historical fiction, but I tend to forget this because I lived during some of those years! Petunia 1949 is a well-written, thought-provoking story about a young Southern girl who's never felt valued by her family. Her father barely tolerates her and is seldom home, leaving her overwhelmed mother to care for their family. Poverty is at the heart of their Arkansas existence and 16-year-old Petunia yearns for something more. She finds it by experiencing love, marriage, and becoming a widow at an early age. What else will Petunia have to endure?

This is such an emotionally charged story! Petunia finds comfort in her friendship with a black girl named Opal but their friendship is frowned upon by the people in her town, and she and her family become targets of the Ku Klux Klan! Author Leah Brewer presents a poignant picture of the poverty, uncertainty, and racial tension that were a part of this time in our nation's history. I recommend Petunia 1949 to all who enjoy historical fiction.

I received an ARC from the author via Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours. There was no obligation for a favorable review. These are my own thoughts.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

View all my reviews



Leah Brewer is a multi-genre author who writes clean novels. Even though she was the youngest of six and the only girl, she had a lot of time on her hands. She was born to her parents in a small town in Central Arkansas later in life. Growing up, you could find Leah playing make-believe near the White River or as she waded through water deep in the woods.

Leah is a Writers Ink of Northeast Arkansas member and is currently working on her third installment in her Seeds of Faith series.

Before she started writing, you could find Leah behind a computer working her telecommunications job that she’s had for over twenty-five years.

Leah spends her spare time with her husband, Mark, their grown children, and her brand-new granddaughter, Charlotte.

You can find Leah at facebook.com/writingleahbrewer or leahbrewerauthor.com.

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, May 1
Excerpt at Passages to the Past

Tuesday, May 2
Review at Tammy Reads

Wednesday, May 3
Review & Excerpt at Connie's History Classroom

Wednesday, May 10
Review at Older & Smarter

Thursday, May 11
Review at Rajiv's Reviews

Friday, May 12
Review at Novels Alive
Review at Girl Who Reads
Review at Reading is My Remedy


Enter to win a copy of Petunia 1949 by Leah Brewer + $25 Amazon Gift Card!

The giveaway is open to the US only and ends on May 12th. You must be 18 or older to enter.

Petunia 1949

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