France, 1916. Sophie Lefevre is ordered to serve the German officers who socialise in her hotel. When the new Kommandant sets eyes on Sophie's portrait - painted by her husband Edouard - a dangerous obsession is born. Almost a century later, Sophie's portrait hangs in the home of Liv Halston. A chance encounter reveals the painting's true worth - and its troubled history that is about to resurface and turn Liv's life upside down….
©2012 Jojo Moyes (P)2012 W F Howes Ltd
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A lovely story of the cases of humanity during a time of atrocities and poverty. The dilemmas of a woman wanting to do the best she can for her family potentially at the expense of her own self respect come across so well in a French village. Well worth a read.
"Great in the beginning, but...."
It took me a few minutes to get used to the French accent of the narrator in the beginning, but soon the story about this woman in occupied France during the first Worl War took me and I couldn't stop listening and was so for over 5 hours and then the story changes to London in our days. First I was reluctant to leave "my" story (the connection just over a painting wans't strong enough for me) to another, even if there was no more French accent then. But after a while it was "nice" that means it was nothing as good as the first part, but it was good entertainment. I was a little reminded of books by Kinsella. That it is not meant as a bad thing, but it was just such a difference to the serious and interesting part of the beginning. Then the book good worse and worse (I think) when the parts of the stories are getting shorter, but not really interwoven, the part in our days gets more and more unbelievable (why do people in this book start to behave like 5year old children, why court room scences that are totally unbelievebal etc...) and sometimes even a little cheesy, besides that the part in France isn't as good as in the beginning. In the end I just wanted to reach the end.
I love jojo moyes books and this has been one of my favourites. This is easy listening although the storyline about the First World War was interesting and kept me apprehensive. I think I let out a few gasps when listening in public. I like the way the modern day story in twines with history. The book is well read- especially the French accents.
"an enjoyable read - I got quite into the storyline"
I liked that it was partly set in Ww1 and was about stolen art- the present time was also well written - I felt that I knew the amazing architecture of the modern building... a fairly quick read all in all.
"A lovely story very well read"
A found this a lovely story which was generally easy to listen to. I am just not sure I totally approved of the ending.
"Enjoyable and wonderful FULL story"
I enjoyed listening to this book and I ten to buy the real for keeps. Jojo Moyes writing is beautiful to listen to as she is able to steep the listener into each scene written; be it 1916 or 2014. Both lead characters are women you can empathize with and admire. Definitely a must read for my daughter, my sisters, Mum and best friends!!
The story and how it's written is extremely good, one cannot guess how it will end, one you must read.
"just what I needed"
interesting yet not obscenely difficult to understand.
I engaged with the characters and didn't 100% see the ending coming.
"I enjoyed it so much the End disappointed me..."
An excellent story, but because throughout the book we are basically fighting for Livs cause, for the antagonist to win at the end dismayed me very much
The double narration for this book because is perfect because the book is told in dual timeliness of two people, connected via a painting. The story draws you into the innermost existence of a family's endurance during the Great War. With optimism and disappointment, one cares what happens as in the present Liv fights for someone she could not possibly have known a century ago. Full of humour, wit, desperation and happiness. Not a shallow novel, a solid read. Highly recommended if you want to be absorbed by a book.
"A Bit Slow"
I struggled to finish this book but stuck with it in short bursts as I did want to know how it ended. The last few chapters did pick up the pace and the ending tidied everything up. Not a book I could read again.
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