Winter Garden

Winter Garden

eBook - 2010
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The dying wish of a loving father ignites a family drama that brings two sisters and their acid-tongued, Russian-born mother together in a story that reaches back to WWII Leningrad.
Publisher: New York :, St. Martin's Griffin,, [2010]
Description: 1 online resource (436 pages)
Copyright Date: ©2010
ISBN: 9781429938464
1429938463
9780312663155
0312663153

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t
t_lynschm77
May 04, 2021

As expected, a Kristin Hannah novel left me moved. This one is a tough one though, lots of pain and sadness, but such is life for some, especially during times of war. It is hard to imagine living through times of air raids, ration cards, starvation, desperation....but people did and they survived to tell their story. I always learn so much historical context from Hannah's novels and this one was no exception. To be honest, the beginning of the book was a little slow. I knew it would get better but the build up took about 50 pages too many, but once the "fairy tale" started, I was hooked. I'm kind of use to that with Hannah's work and I let it go in faith that the story would end amazingly, which it did.

s
sbspong
Aug 02, 2020

Excellent story, though a bit of a slog to get to where it was hard to put down. Kristen Hannah is a gifted story teller.

a
AaronAardvark1940
Jun 08, 2020

Hannah says this is her favorite novel. Although she has been one of the authors my wife wants me to read to her, this one has been difficult. It has the same strength of research, the same sense of its historical context, and good storytelling. So, you may ask, why the comparatively low number of stars? I have usually been able to invest myself in characters whose stories I read; not just understanding them, but feeling their emotions, even sometimes having dreams that involve incarnations of them. This story is so full of pain and suffering that I found myself wanting to finish it as quickly as possible to stop having the reactions I felt. If you thought her "Nightingale" dwelt too much on pain, stay away from this one.

a
andreabilyeu
May 28, 2020

Very sad story, I almost couldn't keep reading it. But I'm glad that I did finish the book. It was well written and I learned about the Seige of Leningrad.

b
BellJuju
Jan 26, 2020

Wonderful, wonderful book. Powerful topic. I find military history very interesting. I have toured Civil War sites, WWI sites, and the DDay Beaches. These tours have included the impact of the wars on the life of the civilian populations during the war and after. A goal of mine has been to tour the Eastern Front of WWII. Reading this book makes me want to tour the Eastern Front even more. Highly recommend this book. Wonderful author.

IndyPL_MaryW Jan 15, 2020

I read the Nightingale and The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah. So I though what next? A coworker that is a fan recommended reading Winter Garden and Firefly Lane. Ironically found an interview of Kristen Hannah about The Great Alone. Someone in the audience asked what book of hers to read next and Kristin also recommend Winter Garden and Firefly Lane. So I started with Winter Garden. The story is told in a back and forth manner between the current lives of two daughters and their mother Anya. At a slow pace Anya reveals details about her young life under Stalin and the Siege of Leningrad. The daughters finally gain an understanding of their mother; her past hurts and appreciation for her survival of such atrocities. The historical aspects of this book really appealed to me. Anya didn’t know what history tell us about that time, but she does know what she experienced and felt. The book is a gut-wrenching story about suffering, broken hearts, the will to survive and reconciliation.

m
mardscott
Dec 11, 2019

This is one of Hannah's better novels. The story has much more depth than how it appears. Yes, again, Hannah's central characters are sisters, which always works for her. These two sisters are Meredith and Nina; they spend much of their life at odds with one another because they are so different. But they also have two uniting elements: one, their father, whom both sisters always adored; two, their mother, whom both sisters always sought for her love but believed she did not love them. The beauty of this novel is the means by which Hannah brings the girls and their parents together--through a Russian "fairy" tale that their mother tells the girls when they were young and retells now they are adults. This is a novel in which the sisters find not only who and why their mother is as she is but also find out about themselves, reflecting growth, maturity, and acceptance . . . and love.

b
betsymarzoni
Apr 11, 2019

Kristin Hannah is so effective when writing about human relationships and hardship. Her novel "The Nightingale" remains my favorite among her books.

JCLHeatherC Mar 14, 2019

A powerful book that showcases how not dealing with your past prevents you from appreciating and enjoying your present.

ArapahoeKati Jan 11, 2019

A devastating story within a story about sisters, mothers and history. If you love historical fiction, but you're tired of WWII Europe, try this novel that takes place in WWII Russia instead.

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M_ALCOTT Apr 10, 2015

"He is my home. How will I live without him?"-Anya

M_ALCOTT Apr 10, 2015

"Every choice changed the road you were on and it was too easy to end up going in the wrong direction."

M_ALCOTT Apr 10, 2015

"Sometimes when you opened the door to your mother's past, you found your own future."

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