Well done! The characters are well developed and you can feel the harshness of living unprepared in Alaska. So many of our military veterans suffer with PTSD. They need so much more support than they ever get. This book paints a good portrait of what it is like for a family living with those after affects.
There are beautiful, vivid descriptions of Alaska that make you feel like you are there. And sad episodes of domestic violence. In a deeper way, it is a story of love. And a story of a close community there to help their neighbors when in need.
I love Kristen Hannah books in general. This was definitely a notable one.
I listened to the audio version of this book. Everyone already knows that this is an incredible book. Just how incredible you may ask? Wowsa incredible! The characters in this book deal with so much that you wouldn't think they could possibly get any joy out of life, yet they do.
After Leni's father inherits a house in Alaska, the deeply troubled Viet Nam Vet loads up his family and heads out. Alaska is supposed to provide a type of golden happiness for the family. They discover they are woefully unprepared for the hardships of Alaska and that happiness is continually scurrying just out of their reach. Leni's finds salvation in Matthew, a boy her age who needs a friend as desperately as she does. They develop an unbreakable closeness through the years that even severe traumatic events can't destroy.
The story details the life of the family and those in the small community as well as the trials of living with a man with PTSD in an isolated area. Ms. Hannah could have written only of the bleakness of both the area and the lives of the people, but she also shows how the family grows to love the wildness and the freedom they discover in Alaska. This book was so good I listened to it foregoing nap time! What a great book to end my 2020 with!
At its core, a love story of Alaska filled with a multitude of characters, indomitable dreamers, survivalists and isolationists, some as harsh and some as beautiful as the Alaskan wilderness.
I greatly enjoyed it, in particular for how it built suspense. I consumed it mostly via audio CD, and thought the narrator was quite good. In the last third of the story, there were times when I couldn't get out of the car until I had heard the end of a suspenseful chapter. A couple of things seemed a bit unbelievable in the last third of the book -- but even so, it kept me listening in the driveway once I arrived home!
Way too predictable.
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