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In the tradition of Marilynne Robinson's Housekeeping and Elizabeth Strout's Olive Kitteridge, a dazzling debut novel about the family bonds that remain even when they seem irretrievably torn apart
Growing up in hardscrabble Kentucky in the 1920s, with their mother dead and their stepfather an ever-present threat, Bertie Fischer and her older sister Mabel have no one but each other--with perhaps a sweetheart for Bertie waiting in the wings. But on the day that Bertie receives her eighth-grade diploma, good intentions go terribly wrong. A choice made in desperate haste sets off a chain of misunderstandings that will divide the sisters and reverberate through three generations of women.
What happens when nothing turns out as you planned? From the Depression through World War II and Vietnam, and smaller events both tragic and joyful, Bertie and Mabel forge unexpected identities that are shaped by unspeakable secrets. As the sisters have daughters and granddaughters of their own, they discover that both love and betrayal are even more complicated than they seem.
Gorgeously written, with extraordinary insight and emotional truth, Nancy Jensen's powerful debut novel illuminates the far-reaching power of family and family secrets.
From Publishers Weekly
© Publishers Weekly
I read this book because my book club chose it. I found it sad and depressing. I can not accept that not one of characters was curious enough to find out what happened to Mabel.
I kept wanting someone to come to their senses and reach out to each other. At least maybe the younger generations were going to do that.
Sad sad sad
Fantastic in a tragic way
I absolutely loved this book! While I had my fingers crossed for a happier ending, I found the actual ending to be more believable. The way the book was written, so fast moving, was hard to adjust at first. I found myself sad the way some characters just seemed to disappear, only to be a mere mention in later chapters. But I think that's part of what made the book relatable; time moving forward so quickly, people coming and going. I highly recommend anyone who is even a little curious read this book, but also caution that it is somewhat tragic.
Wow-wonderful book! I read a lot of books, but this is the first time I have wanted to write a review . I want everyone to read this well written, deeply touching story.