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Kristin Hannah

    Reading Wednesday

    Book Review The Four Winds by Kristin Hannah

    We listened to several audio books while on our recent road trip through the southwest USA. This new release by Kristin Hannah was one of them. I struggled to enjoy the voice of this audio book, but in the end I enjoyed the overall story. Here is my book review The Four Winds by Kristin Hannah.

    This is the story of the dust bowl and the migration to California and those who suffered through it, those who survived it, and those who didn’t. But Hannah is no Steinbeck, so don’t expect Grapes of Wrath here. It is however a touching story, and in true Hannah form, a story of women who endure the unimaginable for their families and what they believe.

    We are introduced to Elsa, a young women who has been coddled by her wealthy family her entire life after being a sickly child. Elsa’s family expect her to live her life as a spinster, refuse her hopes of college and rarely even let her leave the house. By age 25, she has no self-confidence and no future. And then she meets a younger man whose family is from Scilly and soon is pregnant with his child. Elsa’s reputation- obsessed Texas family disown her and she is literally left on the doorstep of the Italian speaking family whose son gives up college to marry her.

    This is certainly not a good way to begin a marriage, and you can only imagine how things develop, particularly as crops dry up and fail, drought takes over the land and Texas becomes a dust bowl.

    Elsa will find herself abandoned and alone with two young children looking for a new life in California, with thousands of other families just like her. When she becomes involved with a movement for better conditions for workers things get both complicated and dangerous for Elsa, her family and all the downtrodden, starving and destitute depression era laborers.

    Although there was much of this book I found weak, and I disliked Elsa’s character in the beginning, she definitely grows throughout the book and finds her voice in the end. I might have liked the book better if I had read it instead of listened to it.

    If you are a Kristine Hannah fan you won’t be disappointed. I hope you enjoyed my Book Review The Four Winds by Kristin Hannah.

    ****Four stars for The Four Winds by Kristin Hannah

    Read last week’s review of News of the World by Paulette Jiles

    My current read The Beekeeper of Aleppo by Christi Lefteri

    This week’s top performing Book Review Pin is Ordinary Grace.

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    Reading Wednesday

    Book Review The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah

    Reading Wednesday

    Location: Reading Wednesday

    Book Review The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

    I started reading Kristin Hannah ALONG time ago, when she was doing romance novels.  She, like her writing, has matured into an excellent storyteller.  I prefer her recent works much more than her early books.

    However, I struggled with the first few chapter of The Great Alone.  But I am glad I stuck with it, because it is a beautifully written and compassionate tale of love and turmoil within ourselves, within our families and within the unpredictable wilderness of Alaska.

    One of the reasons Hannah is able to so accurately describe life in Alaska is revealed in the acknowledgments chapter at the end of the book.  Here Hannah talks about her own upbringing with pioneering and adventuresome parents, who eventually settled in Alaska to open an adventure lodge.

    So perhaps there is a little of Hannah in The Great Alone’s main character, 13 year-old Leni.  Leni, an only child, struggles to understand her parents passionate but often violent relationship, and her fathers PTSD from his time as a POW during the Vietnam War.

    When Leni’s father Ernt decides to move the family to a remote and off-the-grid cabin in Alaska, the  family unravels and the story begins.  Wholly unprepared for Alaska and its long, dark, fierce winters, Leni, Ernt and Cora Albright begin a life of subsistence, barely surviving if it weren’t for the help of neighbors and the folks of the small town of Kaneq.

    The long dark winters take a toll on the already fragile psyche of Ernt Albright, and one extreme violent night will change the direction of Leni and Cora’s life forever.

    Does love conquer all?  Sometimes yes, and sometimes absolutely not.  In the end The Great Alone is one thing – a story of survival.

    ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️Five Stars for The Great Alone.

    Read last week’s review of The Good Earth by Pearl S. Buck

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