“If I have learned anything in this long life of mine, it is this: In love we find out who we want to be; in war we find out who we are. Today’s young people want to know everything about everyone. They think talking about a problem will solve it. I come from a quieter generation. We understand the value of forgetting, the lure of reinvention.”
Hello, my bookish friends. I hope you’re doing great. The Nightingale is one of the books that I wanted to read before the year ends, because I heard so much about it. I finished it last week, and I’m still having a book hangover. I want to read another book, but I can’t seem to let go of the story and the characters yet. The struggle is real. Without further ado, let’s review this book!
This book follows the lives of two sisters during world war two. Vianne is happily married and has one daughter named Sophie. She’d never thought the war would come, but when her husband tells her that he’s going to the front, her life is not the same anymore. The invasion of France has begun, and everything Vianne had dreamed of vanished away. On the other hand, Isabelle is still young but reckless. And she is willing to fight the enemy and defend her country not matter what. When the man she loved abandons her, she joins the French Resistance Movement and leaves her old life behind. However, Vianne and Isabelle’s lives will intersect during one of the most painful and terrifying times, and the war will force them to make risky choices in order to stay alive.
I’m a big fan of historical fiction books, because every time I read one, I learn some facts and stories that really happened or I’ve never heard of, which is awesome. Even if the story is not based on a real war story, it always leaves me with something. When I started reading The Nightingale, I didn’t expect the story to be a rollercoaster of emotions. It was literally heart wrenching. And I think what makes this story interesting, is that it’s about the relationship of two sisters during the German invasion of France. Their childhood wasn’t perfect, because their mother died, and their father was always drunk and upset. What they went through as little girls taught them so much. When it comes to Vianne, she’s become a teacher and a loving mother who appreciated her family more than anything. Even when the war started, keeping Sophie alive was her priority. And Isabelle changed from being an impetuous girl into a courageous and strong woman who helped so many people. She wanted to be known for her bravery and fighting for her country. Her character development was remarkable. She went through hell to save people from getting killed. She is such a role model.
My favorite thing about the story is that it focuses on the role of woman during the war. Like Vianne who helped many children. And Isabelle, who helped so many men with the her friends in the French Resistance Movement. They both helped and fought in different ways. The story also shows how the German Nazi soldiers were treating the French people, and how they made them lose their jobs just because of their religion. Everyone was struggling from the lack of food and money at that time of war. People were killed and some of them were sent to the Ravensbrück concentration camp. Reading about all of that was heartbreaking. It’s impossible to read this book without crying. So keep a tissue box beside you, because trust me, the end will make you ugly cry.
To wrap up my review, The Nightingale isn’t just a story about war, it’s a story about family, love, survival, and sacrifice. And what people are willing to do just to protect their loved ones. It’s a haunting and tear jerking story. I highly recommend it.