Another one of the favorite books I read last month was The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah. Hannah is a best-selling historical fiction author of over 20 books. I loved Winter Garden and I’m adding Firefly Lane to my wish list.
If you need a book for your next book club read, this one is perfect and would spark some wonderful “what would I have done” conversation, as well as spark some wonderful conversations about how we currently stand up to government-sponsored racism.
This story was delicate and maybe a little glossier and romantic than Lilac Girls or The Paris Key. The story follows two very brave sisters shaped by loss and morality during Occupied France. Vianne, the steady and agreeable older sister, is mother to a young daughter and hosting German soldiers in her home. Isabelle, the brave but impetuous younger sister, begins on a journey with the French Resistance, taking on increasingly dangerous missions to aid the Allied cause. Their relationship is tenuous at best, and the story of how they survive and grow through this together will move you to tears.
I loved the humanness that Hannah presented in her characters. I can only imagine the fear and the guilt that would have reigned, that every person on each side of the fight was just one misstep away from brutal consequences. Maybe glossy isn’t the perfect word to describe the way she presented the German occupation, because reality was presented, but her themes of hope and sacrifice and love were part of what I loved about the story. At one point, one of the characters resolves, “Wounds heal. Love lasts. We remain.”
If you like happy endings, you will love this. I promise. Do you have any recommendations for me?