3.75 Stars. Vivienne de la Mare lives in an old farmhouse with her two daughters on Guernsey in the Channel Islands during WWII. Her husband is away f3.75 Stars. Vivienne de la Mare lives in an old farmhouse with her two daughters on Guernsey in the Channel Islands during WWII. Her husband is away fighting in the English army, and it quickly becomes apparent to the reader that Vivienne's marriage is a loveless and unhappy one. The island suddenly becomes occupied by German troops, some moving in in the house beside her own. Even though Vivienne tries hard to remain aloof for the sake of loyalty (to her country and husband), she eventually enters into an affair with a German soldier, Gunther.
I read the plot and thought it sounded amazing. I love a good WWII love story. Yet, it is the love story that I had some trouble with. Even though I felt that the author's main storyline revolved around Gunther and Vivienne, their scenes together were so short and detail-lacking. This kept me emotionally distant from the characters, and I never really bought their romance or felt any depth between them. There were more details about Vivienne's garden or her friendship with her best friend than about interactions with Gunther.
Many of the author's passages were very beautiful and haunting. However, I've always thought that the best books are those that make you feel as if you are living inside the story as it unfolds. The Soldier's Wife felt a bit like being told a story from a person who had heard it from another person who had actually lived it. Somewhere along the way the details become lost. It is a good storyline that could have been even better with more developed characters and more attention to detail in the right places.
I would suggest reading this book for the historical value it offers and the moral questions it raises, not the romance. If you are looking for a great love story set against the backdrop of WWII, I would highly recommend reading The Bronze Horseman by Paullina Simons. It is unmatched (in my humble opinion). ...more
3.5 stars. Really cute story that takes place in Regency England among London high society. Alex and Gavin are adorable. The mystery aspect is pretty3.5 stars. Really cute story that takes place in Regency England among London high society. Alex and Gavin are adorable. The mystery aspect is pretty predictable, but the characters and relationships were so fun that I didn't mind. I really like this author's adult books a little more, but The Season was still a very worthwhile read....more
**spoiler alert** I loved learning about Japanese history and culture. The plot was well thought out and engaging. The writing was superb with so many**spoiler alert** I loved learning about Japanese history and culture. The plot was well thought out and engaging. The writing was superb with so many beautiful passages.
I really wanted to give it 5 stars, but something small was missing for me. Can't put my finger on why I didn't connect with this story as much as I wanted to. If I had to guess, it would be the relationship between Chiyo and Chairman. The very first encounter between these two was so touching and perfect. I set myself up for disappointment when I assumed the rest of the novel would be sprinkled with moving scenes like that between the two. I think Chiyo's longing for him over decades would have been slightly more believable (in my opinion) if she had been given just a little bit...more from Chairman during the times they were around each other. I did love the ending, though....more
Incredible. I read this book a few years ago so I don't remember all the details, but I DO remember the love-story aspect being so charming and tenderIncredible. I read this book a few years ago so I don't remember all the details, but I DO remember the love-story aspect being so charming and tender. This author is amazing.
Amazon recommended this book due to my love of The Bronze Horseman....more
A trilogy everyone should experience at least once. Incredibly moving books that take place in the years following Christ's death and resurrection. ThA trilogy everyone should experience at least once. Incredibly moving books that take place in the years following Christ's death and resurrection. The books follow 3 people on very different journeys as they come to know God intimately. Full of adventure, suspense, drama, and even romance. ...more
Heartfelt, emotional read. Simply stunning. Historical fiction with a sweet love story. I read it years ago and still think about these characters oftHeartfelt, emotional read. Simply stunning. Historical fiction with a sweet love story. I read it years ago and still think about these characters often. First book of the trilogy....more
You have enough plot summaries, so I won't bore you. Just know this book has EVERYTHING: action/adventure, passion, humor, history. The characters areYou have enough plot summaries, so I won't bore you. Just know this book has EVERYTHING: action/adventure, passion, humor, history. The characters are so well developed, and the dialogue is wonderful. You will fall in love with Jamie and Claire. Books like this remind me why I love reading so much. ...more
A story about doing the right thing and protecting those who can't protect themselves (animals or people). This novel had me hooked from the beginnninA story about doing the right thing and protecting those who can't protect themselves (animals or people). This novel had me hooked from the beginnning. Your heart will swell and break and swell again, but you won't be dissappointed. ...more
TBH is my favorite book of all time, and I loved reading more about Tatiana and Alexander. You see these characters develop oceans apart. Tatiana (nowTBH is my favorite book of all time, and I loved reading more about Tatiana and Alexander. You see these characters develop oceans apart. Tatiana (now living in the USA) begins to doubt what happened when she left Russia and wonders if Alexander is still alive afterall. She becomes obsessed with looking for clues to what really happened and knows she cannot move on until she uncovers the truth. Alexander struggles with inner demons and the emotional/physical torture in Russian prison camps and the Red Army. The romantic tension between the two that was so powerful throughout the first novel isn't as apparent in this one (because they are apart), but it is just as riveting. Talk about 3-dimensional characters...this author is amazing. The last 100 pages are so intense that I raced through them at lightening speed. A must read if you loved The Bronze Horseman. ...more
Maybe one of the BEST love stories ever written. I don't make that statement lightly. I've read many, many books and don't know why I only just came aMaybe one of the BEST love stories ever written. I don't make that statement lightly. I've read many, many books and don't know why I only just came across this one. You will never read another book this powerful and touching. The only downfall is that I can't get into any other book since I've read this one. Just can't quit thinking about these characters. You will understand once you've read it.
It is a story that takes place during the end of WWII, but it is from the perspective of a Russian girl and her family right before (and during) the German invasion of Russia. Tatiana (the main character who is just amazing) is 17 years old and meets an officer (Alexander - 22 years old) in the prestigious Russian army (The Red Army). They are drawn to each other immdediately by this otherworldly connection. The chemistry is just palpable. However, Tatiana soon realizes that her older sister - who unknowingly met him just a bit sooner - thinks she is in love with him. So Tatiana decides that she doesn't want to break her sister's heart and tries to ignore her feelings for Alexander. He makes it obvious which sister he wants (Tatiana) but agrees - after Tatiana's begging - that he will not break her sister's heart. He would rather date her sister under some fake guise to see Tatiana than not see her at all.
The more you read into this novel, the more you feel how much these two love each other. All around them people are dying, the country is at war, and Alexander and Tatiana are trying desperately to hide a love that could shatter a family and place them both in grave danger. Alexander has a heartwrenching past and a deadly secret. The more Tatiana finds out about who he really is, the more her safety is threatened. But they cannot stay away from each other...even though they are trying desperately to do the right thing. Alexander is fiercely protective of Tatiana and becomes devoted to keeping her safe. The more they fall in love, the more they have to live a life of lies and secrets from those around them.
This story has everything: adventure, intrigue, mystery, and a timeless love story above all. Yes, it takes place during WWII, but the author never loses you in the history part of it. In fact it enhances the story. If I could use one word to describe this novel it would be haunting. I am haunted by these characters, by what they endured, and by the sacrifices they made for each other.
There is a sequel, and I am literally aching because I don't have it in my hands to pick up the story. When I was about 200 pages into The Bronze Horseman, I got online in the middle of the night and ordered the sequel because I just knew I was going to love this book. I was not dissappointed. It is an 800 page book, and still I thought it was a fast read. I flew through the last 150 pages because I just had to know how it would end. I couldn't even fall asleep after I finished because I couldn't stop thinking about this book.
Yep, it is now my favorite book of all time. ...more