From the very beginning of the book, I knew that I was going to shed some tears while reading about sisters, Nina and Meredith, as they go through losing their father, discovering who their mother really is and the answers to why she has always kept them at such a distance. I didn't know that I would also have a mini history lesson thrown in there! Here is a little bit about the book in the author's own words:
I HIGHLY recommend reading this book (okay...now I feel like LeVar Burton)
There are 3 stories being told that happen in both the past and the present...but it isn't as confusing as other "flashback" books I've read. I have to say that I enjoyed Anya (the mother) telling her "fairy tale" the best. It makes me want to read more historical fiction - so if you have a good historical fiction (yes...Len, I'm talking to you!) book to recommend I'd love to hear about it. :)
I don't want to give too much away so I won't get into a lot of detail about what happens in the book but I will tell you that it was written beautifully. There was just enough detail to give me a good mental picture of the surroundings without making me scan forward for the next bit of dialog (I do that often when authors try to describe the setting too much).
I really appreciated the fact that Kristin Hannah had to have done some homework on this book to make sure that it was accurate.
I also was impressed by the fact that she was actually able to surprise me a few times with the twists and turns she threw in here and there. I hate predictable books - I have never reread a book because I can't bring myself to spend time reading something when I know what happens. I would rather find a new adventure to take! I also hate reading a book when I've figured out the ending too soon...I honestly feel like it's a waste of my time - even if I loved the book and story! I didn't feel like that in this book at all. In fact, I was so taken off guard by the ending (not the very ending but the climax, I guess) that I gasped out loud and Jerry gave me a funny look and asked me if I was okay. (He's reading Dracula...Bram Stokers...I couldn't bring myself to read it because I know what happens!)
Needless to say, I'm really excited about book club and can't wait to hear what all of the other women thought of the book. I feel like I know most of them well enough now to know what they will say about it...in fact, I think I have 2 people picked out that (if they read it) will say they didn't care for it! I'll tell you if I'm right after we meet on the 31st!
If you are looking for a good winter read... seriously, go pick this book up!