The Nightingale –
a story of World War 2 + the French Resistance
While I love reading historical fiction I’ve read very little about 20th-century war and I know even less about this part of our world’s history. One reason is that my history class barely even touched on the 20th century. The other reason is that I don’t read much non-fiction. I’m just not a fan. So when I got the opportunity to review The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah I was very excited to learn about World War 2.
The story opens as a life is coming to a close. Being notified of a reunion, our heroine and storyteller is moving from her home into an assisted living facility. Having gone up to the attic to see if there’s anything that she wants to bring with her she finds a photo of Juliette Gervaise in a trunk that takes her back to the beginning of her life.
The Nightingale is the story of two sisters living two different lives in pre-war France. One raises a child while her husband goes to war and the other is an impulsive barely-adult who lives a life of intrigue, danger, and bravery. One sister does what she has to do to keep a roof over her child’s head and food on the table. The other is fully involved in the French Resistance.
During the years that the war is going on in France the sister’s lives meet on occasion. Because of their age difference and the trauma they suffered in childhood, there is a great deal of hurt, judgment, and unspoken words. In the end, the war ends and life moves on.
The story closes with the passeurs’ reunion, a son learning who his mother really is, and hearts reuniting for a common cause.
The Nightingale is an amazing story of life, love, war, danger, and doing what’s right. I was kept on the edge of my seat from almost the first word I read. I highly recommend it and hope that you’ll enjoy reading it as much as I did.
Click on the book to get your very own copy of The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah in hardcover, paperback (available 4/25/17), and Kindle.
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