When Grace Hansen finds a box belonging to her beloved grandfather, she has no idea it holds the key to his past - and to long-buried family secrets. In the box are his World War I diaries and a cryptic note addressed to her. Determined to solve her grandfather's puzzle, Grace follows his diary entries across towns and battle sites in northern France, where she becomes increasingly drawn to a charming French man - and suddenly aware that someone is following her....
Through her grandfather's vivid writing and Grace's own travels, a picture emerges of a man very unlike the one who raised her: one who watched countless friends and loved ones die horrifically in battle; one who lived a life of regret. But her grandfather wasn't the only one harboring secrets, and the more Grace learns about her family, the less she thinks she can trust them.
©2016 M. K. Tod (P)2016 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved.
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I have both the ebook and the audio, but I mostly listened to the Audible version of this book. The narrators, Emily Sutton-Smith and Scott Merriman, are excellent.
This book has most of the elements I like in a book - historical fiction, mystery, and just a tad of romance. It alternates between 2 time periods, WWI (1914-1918) and present day (1991) and is told in 2 points of view, Grace in the present day and Grace's grandfather, Martin, during WWI, plus Martin's journals. It did get confusing at times when the story would switch from Martin's journals where he is speaking in first person and then the story switches to third person, but that may be because I was listening to the audio. It was an interesting way of telling the story though.
I liked the way Grace was able to solve the "mystery" using the clues in her grandfather's journals, but it did seem to take her a long time to figure it out.
I liked this book and think that having the two readers - one male and one female was a effective way to keep the 1990's and WWI years separate when listening.
I liked M.K.Tod's two earlier WWI novels and this one was just as enjoyable.
This book has two story lines--one present day told from a woman's point of view, the other a World War l plot told from a young man's point of view. Both are engaging and beautifully written. Both have wonderful endings that make you glad you spent time in the lives of these deeply-felt characters. The WWI story in particular touches your heart. It's a book you won't forget, and a perfect audio performance.
The basic story was excellent, but it was told at least six times, and not in different voices, in an attempt to make the book longer. It could easily have been a short story without missing anything.
author & web developer
I enjoyed this interesting historical though I found the WWI sequences a bit too raw and graphic for my taste and the female narrator somewhat stilted, as if ennuniation was more important than conveying the character. I look forward to more from this author, whose work shows such promise!
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