A little slow to start, but once it got rolling, I was hooked. A story within a story, spellbinding and captivating. Enjoyed it so much I listened to the last 40 minutes three times! Well written and totally would recommend!
English major. Love to read
This is a startling book in many ways because things are set up one way and they unravel to reveal another world both in story and characterization. I enjoyed it thoroughly - poignant is a better description rather than depressing or sad. I am leaving the story with inspiration not sadness. Well written and well narrated.
I bought this because I love Nightingale so much. What a disappointment. The women were all so unlikable that I didn't care what brought them to this place. The story line worse than a made for TV movie, it ended so ridiculously. The first half was painfully slow. The story of the mothers survival should have been the whole story.
No, but it has turned me off from this author.
OMG. I finally put my I Phone on 1.25 to keep the slow read bearable. She did do a good job with accents.
The family story line. Leningrad in the winter was the story.
I have found some gems in the sale books, but this one let me down.
I had high hopes for this book after The Nightingale, but the story went nowhere and the characters - at least all the female ones were just completely unlikeable and annoying. Even the narration grated my ears. I had to stop listening.
Avid reader (listener). I work in dog rescue in Arkansas, am married and am 62 years old.
Anyone who has an interest in historical fiction would enjoy this book. It's set in modern day, however, the mother tells a story throughout the entire book about her life in Russia during WWII. It's basically two stories in one. The author is masterful!
Ken Follett is one of my favorite authors, and Kristin Hannah is right up there with him! I so happy to have found her! Many of Follett's books are historical fiction and although the characters are fiction ... the history is not. It was the same with this book. The plight of the world during WWII is unimaginable in today's world ... this author wove a tale you could see clearly in your mind's eye and feel the struggles as if you were right there in the room with the characters ... or trudging through snow in subzero temps.
The narrator is absolutely brilliant. There was not one character or one accent that could have been improved upon. I've listened to her before, but she is right up there in my top five narrators! Perfect for this book.
I rarely have an "extreme" reaction to any book. But this time, I did. If you truly pay attention to the story and put yourself in the room with the characters, it would be impossible to not have an extreme reaction. I did smile some in the book, but more of my reaction was, "Oh, my God! The Suffering!!!" (at the hands of the Germans.} How could anyone be so evil to so many? No one who went through WWII got away unscathed, whether they were on the battle grounds or just trying to survive without freezing to death or starving to death. It just made me want to help and continue to ask, "Why is this happening? How can he (Hitler) get away with this?" It's so hard for me to understand how millions upon millions were following him ... he was pure evil.
It's a history lesson that you will enjoy. Although there is a lot of suffering in this book, there is no doubt this is an accurate account of exactly how it was in Russia during WWII. It was truly an amazing book. The ending was perfect.
Love a great book that stays with you long after you've finished it.
Was surprised by the depth here. We are told of the siege of Lenengrad in heartbreaking detail, much of which I'm ashamed to say I was ignorant of. Sad, story but is uplifting too as each character works out their life and family dynamics. Only a talented author like Kristin Hannah can pull this off. Loved this book and do enjoy this author. Great narration, the accents done are super. This book caused me to read up on the siege of Lenengrad, a sign of a good book indeed.
Kristin Hannah has fast become one of my favorite authors. She knows how to tell a woman's story. They have so far (I have read this and Firefly Lane) been a bit dramatic and extreme, but believeable. In this case, it was a bit tiresome as the two sisters squabbled back and forth over the same issues, but that is reality in a family (I have three sisters). And the mother was a bit extreme in her hesitancy (refusal) to connect emotionally with these two daughters. But the mother's tale was riveting. This was delightful to listen to (if you can call the struggles Anya went through delightful). I will get more books by Hannah to listen to and recommend others do the same.
The characters are well-defined. The storyline absorbs you! The ending a shocker! A book that is well worth your money and your time!
Awesome! It was an interesting way of introducing the story line over generations. The story was never finished until the last page. How could you not feel the joy and the pain of the mother as a child and her daughters struggle to understand her. It just gets better and better. I loved this book. I will listen again and again.
The characters' behavior is unnatural & unrealistic, in my opinion. Neither mother or daughters would repond as these women did, given their circumstances.
A good narration, however.