Admission time. I had heard about Kristin Hannah’s The Nightingale, but for some reason, I had been putting off reading it. I just couldn’t wrap my mind around it. I do love historical fiction, but I was in a mystery-thriller phase that I just could not work my way out of.
Last week, however, I wanted something different, so I decided to go for it. And go for it I did. All 592 pages. Perhaps my mind knew that I would not be able to put it down once I started. Whatever it was that kept me from reading it before, I am so very glad that I finally got around to it. And I read it, ALL of it, in just over 1 day. I truly could not put it down! YES! It is that great.
Two sisters. One steadfast and true. One temperamental and headstrong. After the death of their mother and the day their father sent them away, both want nothing more than to be loved again. Vianne is married to Antoine, whom she has loved and been loved by since she was 14 years-old. Isabelle has been kicked out of one boarding school after another.
When news of war comes to France, Vianne remembers her father the way he was before the first Great War and how he was never the same afterward. Isabelle only remembers the man from after the war; the one who never wanted her.
With Antoine called to fight, Vianne is left to care for their daughter, Sophie, when the Germans invade France. She has no idea how she will cope. Isabelle wants to fight for France. She wants to join the Resistance and do whatever possible to free France from the horrible Nazi regime.
Differing dispositions and ideology separate the sisters, but as conditions in France turn into a real-life nightmare, each sister must tread her own dangerous path to survive the Occupation.
This is now one of my favorite books of all time. It is historical fiction, real-life, heartache, terror, love, and forgiveness all wrapped up in a story that you will not want to put down until you make it to the final page. And then you will want more. Unputdownable!
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