Recommended Reading – The Nightingale

Kristin Hannah’s Latest Book 

The Nightingale

Right now, reading is a luxury for me.  It feels as though from the time I wake up until the time I crawl into bed and slip into a coma each night is taken up with having to work, look after the kids, the house, the dog, etc.  But…  I always make time to read as it is a cheap escape into someone else’s world.  During a deployment I usually read ‘light, fluffy, feel good’ books.  I was hesitant to read a book about war with my husband being deployed.  I am so glad I went against my instincts.  This is easily one of the best books I have read in years, I could barely put it down.  I have read several of Kristin Hannah’s books over the years (Home Front is another great military one about a woman serving and the sacrifices she makes) and I always enjoyed them but this goes beyond simple enjoyment.  This book truly took me on a journey to the depths of my heart and back (I felt like it had been torn out a few times too).

When I started reading this book I was in the familiar ‘feel sorry for me my husband has been away for over six months’ mode.  By the end of this book I was completely humbled and reminded that I am fortunate – that I have no idea what struggle really is.  This book tells the stories of two sisters both brave and courageous in the face of hatred and surrounded by death.  There were times when it was almost too painful to read but I couldn’t help myself.  I became invested in the characters and the story and just had to know what happened.  I was reminded that my stresses are having to take out the garbage, walk the dog, fill the car up with gas, get groceries, look after the kids, work, etc.  – I am lucky.

This book takes you on a journey through the years of German occupied France – telling the story through the eyes of two sisters choosing two different paths to survive and helping others throughout the war.  These are women forced to make impossible choices over and over again.  Hannah does an incredible job of creating characters that you not only believe in but who inspire you to be a better person.  I love that Hannah chose to highlight the humane, brave and selfless things women did for others during a time of great human suffering.  Sometimes it takes a great book to make you realize that life isn’t so bad after all and that there are so many things to be grateful for thanks to the sacrifices of others.  Bravo Hannah –  This is a must read for 2015 but have a box of kleenex for at least the last 50 pages!

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