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Stella Bain
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Archive: Other Books > Stella Bain by Anita Shreve - 3 stars

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Ellen | 2050 comments 1916 Marne, France: an unconscious young woman is found near the site of a recent bombing. She is carried to a local Red Cross unit where she is treated for a severe head wound and injuries to her feet. Once she regains consciousness she is unable to remember her name although the name "Stella Bain" lingers deep in her mind. She adopts the name and begins to help with driving ambulances and caring for injured soldiers. The word "Admiralty" consumes her thoughts and she knows that she must visit the London landmark.

In London, Stella is overcome with fatigue and the beginnings of illness. As she staggers through a lush garden a woman comes to her rescue. Lily Bridges brings Stella into her home where she and her surgeon husband, Augustus, nurse and befriend the stranger. Stella regains her health and convinces Dr. Bridges to bring her to the Admiralty. There she is confronted by someone from her past and she has instant recovery of her memories some of which are completely terrifying. Stella must now face the life she left behind in America and the man who ruined the life of someone who did not deserve it.

This was an interesting historical fiction novel that dealt with the beginnings of the realization that soldiers, and others who experienced war, could have deep-seated psychological issues, what we now know as PTSD. Stella is a noble character and her backstory is not pretty. Although trauma and heartbreak constantly invade her life, the ending just seemed a bit too pretty and convenient. Not bad.


message 2: by Joanne (new)

Joanne (joabroda1) | 7110 comments Th only book I have read by her was The Pilot's Wife, it was just OK for me and I never picked another one up by her. I probably should give her another go-have you read anything else by her that was better?


Ellen | 2050 comments Joanne wrote: "Th only book I have read by her was The Pilot's Wife, it was just OK for me and I never picked another one up by her. I probably should give her another go-have you read anything else b..."
I really liked "Testimony", "The Stars are Fire" and "Light on Snow".


message 4: by Joanne (new)

Joanne (joabroda1) | 7110 comments Thank you, I may pick one of those up.


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