The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah

34912895.jpg

 

My Review:

LOVED THIS BOOK! The Great Alone is an epic story of love of family and love of home –  full of emotion with picturesque descriptions of the beautiful and dangerous Alaskan landscape and the depiction of a non traditional way of life. Powerful and heartbreaking, author Kristin Hannah tells the story of passionate yet struggling husband and wife, Ernt and Cora, and teenage daughter Leni in 1974, showing the capacity for endurance, tolerance, strength, and dedication to family.

When Ernt returns home after being a POW in Vietnam, he is not the same happy husband and father he once was.  Angry and on edge, privately suffering, he is continually searching for freedom, a new and peaceful place to call home with his supportive wife and young daughter.  A perfect opportunity arises and he impulsively moves his small family to a remote village in Alaska.  With no running water or electricity, wild animals and harsh weather, this new way of life is focused on survival, and with some reservations but with dedication and devotion, 13 year old Leni and her mom, Cora are supportive and go all in.  With support from the small, neighborly Alaskan community, they learn to hunt and live off the land and adapt to the challenging lifestyle in hopes of having a happy family life.

When the endless Alaskan summer days turn dark and frigid, Ernt’s PTSD is triggered and his anger and violent behavior put Leni and Cora in grave danger.  Living in isolation, with secrets and fear, mother and daughter must be physically and mentally strong and make some life changing decisions before it is too late.   The hopes for fresh beginnings and endless love turn to misguided obsessions and uncontrollable domestic violence, causing a whirlwind of emotions and making this an exceptional book.

If you loved The Nightingale, where Kristin Hannah shows us the strength of brave women risking their lives for others in the French Resistance in World War II, you will love The Great Alone, fiercely independent women who fight to survive, risking their lives for the love of family, community and each other.  A story of resilience, nature and human nature, this is a must read!

If you would like to read an incredible, true story about a girl who grew up in the mountains, CLICK HERE.

The Great Alone Goodreads Summary

54493.jpg

About the Author:

Kristin Hannah is the award-winning and bestselling author of more than 20 novels including the international blockbuster, The Nightingale, which was named Goodreads Best Historical fiction novel for 2015 and won the coveted People’s Choice award for best fiction in the same year. Additionally, it was named a Best Book of the Year by Amazon, iTunes, Buzzfeed, the Wall Street Journal, Paste, and The Week.

Kristin’s highly anticipated new release, The Great Alone, was published on February 6, 2018 (St. Martin’s Press). The novel, an epic love story and intimate family drama set in Alaska in the turbulent 1970’s is a daring, stay-up-all-night story about love and loss, the fight for survival and the wildness that lives in both nature and man. It has been listed as one of the most anticipated novels of the year by The Seattle Times, Bustle.com, PopSugar, Working Mother, Southern Living, and Goodreads.

The Nightingale is currently in production at Tri Star, with award-winning director Michelle MacLaren set to direct. Home Front was optioned for film by 1492 Films (produced the Oscar-nominated The Help) with Chris Columbus attached to write, produce, and direct. Movie news on The Great Alone is coming soon.

Advertisements

Lawn Boy by Jonathan Evison

 

35489159.jpg

My Review:

A wonderful coming of age story about a 22 year old Mexican man, told with wit and humor, Lawn Boy author Jonathan Evison brings to light the struggles based on race and socioeconomic class.  Mike Muñoz mows lawns for a living.  He has limited education, lives in a dilapidated home, has no money and although all he wants is the American Dream, he has so many strikes against him.  Through trials and tribulations, Mike moves one step forward and two steps back as he makes choices to better his future and tries to achieve his goals.  He is extremely likable and although he makes some questionable decisions, I was always rooting for him.  A disabled older brother, a shady businessman and a sleazy real estate agent are some of the people in Mike’s life that create havoc, but he takes the good with the bad and learns along the way.  I love that he finally felt energized and supported and conjured up the power to live his authentic self through his relationship with Andrew, a wacky activist who works in the library.  Andrew generates great conversation, brings Mike new experiences and opens up his world to possibilities that could lead to happiness and success.

Mike enjoys reading, has great passion for tree sculpting and landscaping, loves his family and is persistent… and despite his faults, you will love him too!  A heartwarming story with many colorful characters – fun and entertaining, while at the same time bringing to light how ethnicity, education, money and perception all play a role in success.  I highly recommend it!

Goodreads summary

1083757.jpg

About the Author:

Jonathan Evison is the author of four previous novels, including All About Lulu, West of Here, The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving, and This Is Your Life, Harriet Chance!
In his teens, Evison was the founding member and frontman of the Seattle punk band March of Crimes, which included future members of Pearl Jam and Soundgarden.
Born in San Jose, California, he now lives with his wife and family in Washington State.