The Great Alone

The Great Alone

Book - 2018
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Lenora Allbright is 13 when her father convinces her mother, Cora, to forgo their inauspicious existence in Seattle and move to Kaneq, AK. It's 1974, and the former Vietnam POW sees a better future away from the noise and nightmares that plague him. Having been left a homestead by a buddy who died in the war, Ernt is secure in his beliefs, but never was a family less prepared for the reality of Alaska, the long, cold winters and isolation. Locals want to help out, especially classmate Matthew Walker, who likes everything about Leni. Yet the harsh conditions bring out the worst in Ernt, whose paranoia takes over their lives and exacerbates what Leni sees as the toxic relationship between her parents. The Allbrights are as green as greenhorns can be, and even first love must endure unimaginable hardship and tragedy as the wilderness tries to claim more victims.
Publisher: New York :, St. Martin's Press,, 2018
Edition: First U.S. edition
Description: 440 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm
Copyright Date: ©2018
ISBN: 9780312577230
Branch Call Number: Hann


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Mar 14, 2018

this was a riveting story about a family that went to Alaska bc the abusive , PTSD father wanted to. They grew to love Alaska, but the abuse of mother and eventually daughter, once she was pregnant by son of father's enemy there, lead to his murder by the wife. Sad story but one of great redemption. The daughter does return to Alaska to marry baby's father, despite his invalid status. I loved this book. The writing is amazing.

Mar 12, 2018

As a former Alaskan I looked forward to this popular book and enjoyed the first few chapters. Yes, some of the situations seemed contrived, but not totally unimaginative given the context. People do migrate to Alaska to escape or hide, and many come unprepared. But once this family acclimates to their locale, the story line disintegrates. How many conflicts must this young girl face? And is there any circumstance that the author has not included for her to deal with? Frankly, when the novel turned into a romance novel I quit.

Mar 11, 2018

I hated this book. It was a depressing mix of "Little House in the Big Woods" and "The Shining". Not saying it was poorly written. War veteran Dad had PTSD, addiction to alcohol etc. Continually makes stupid choices. Mom loves him so much that she allows her young daughter to be caught up in a twisted version of love as dependency and horrific abuse. This story didn't need the background of Alaska and all it's terrible beauty. It could have been played out any place. The cycle just got boring.........went to town, Dad gets jealous, wife gets beaten.....winter starts and....wife gets goes to town meeting and..........wife gets beaten.. But "THEY LOVE EACH OTHER". I just couldn't accept the ending "eulogy" that "Mom was a strong woman and a survivor." She failed in a parent's most basic job...keep your children safe. Can't believe it's number One on sales lists. I agree with previous reader's comments that this seems more like a Young Adult Book.

Mar 08, 2018

A great read!

Mar 08, 2018

There are a lot of new books that are really good, memorable plot and characters, and page turning suspense. But few can compete with Kristin Hannahs' novel, “The Long Alone.” After reading the first page I was totally hooked and could not put it down. After her best selling novel, “The Nightingale”, the author was afraid of publishing her next book that could not live up to its high standard but she need not have worried. This novel is definitely in the award winning category.
Hoping for a fresh start, a battle scarred veteran with PTSD, is elated to find one of his Vietnam war buddies has left him a house and 40 acres in a remote part of Alaska. With very little planning he takes off in their VW bus with his wife and 13 year old daughter. They all hope this will be the answer to overcoming his nightmares that left him angry, hostile, and paranoid. He was insanely jealous of any attention paid or shown between his beautiful wife and other men, resulting in assaulting her.
The story is told from the viewpoint of Leni, coming of age during a tumultuous time, caught between the passionate and stormy relationship of her parents. They arrive in Alaska during the summer when the sun shone eighteen hours a day. With help from a number of new neighbors, they learn how to live in this new and dangerous environment and to prepare for the long winter of darkness. For a while things are better, they all work hard and her Dad does not have reoccurring nightmares. But as winter approaches and darkness descents, her fathers' fragile mental state deteriorates. Despite it all, Leni falls in love with Alaska and the son of neighbor who she is forbidden to see.

I would love to see this in a movie. What a story! What splendid scenery and unexpected twists in the plot!

Mar 08, 2018

This is not my genre, but I decided to give it a try, mainly because the author lives in the Northwest and Alaska is our next door neighbor. It is very readable, but is not my type of book.
I thoroughly enjoyed the portrayal of the people in the village and most of the female protagonist's point of view narration. It is just that the story was never very compelling. The brief allusions to the time 1974-85 gave it some value, especially if you were actually alive during that era.
The romance novel aspects never resonated with me, up to and including the end. Lots of different types of love and its effects on others, apparently a staple of romance novels, are exposed.
One final observation- in one passage the author makes reference to a Dick's Drive in on Aurora. While one exists in our present, it is recent and not from the era of the story.

DPLalyssab Mar 08, 2018

Told from the perspective of the daughter, this is the troubling tale of a family seeking a new start in the Alaska frontier. Takes place in the 1970s and discusses domestic abuse and resiliency.

marycatlyons Mar 06, 2018

A fascinating look at life in the 70's, particularly life in Alaska with a father who suffers from PTSD. I definitely think it's worth a read, if not two!

Mar 05, 2018

Loved The Nightingale, but this one was very disappointing. More suitable as a young adult romance novel. Predictable ending.

Mar 05, 2018

One of the best books I have ever read!!! It was amazing!

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AL_MARYA Mar 13, 2018

You know what they say about finding a man in Alaska—the odds are good, but the goods are odd.

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