I was lucky enough to receive this book as an advance readers copy in a giveaway. I read the summary of what the book was about & thought it sounded interesting. When the book arrived to our house months ago, I truly meant to read it but as a full time mom & full time out of the house job on top of that…it just sat in a pile with the million of other books & magazines I keep meaning to get around to.
This past weekend I was reading an article in one of my magazines & at the end of the story, there was a little blurb about how the author wrote a book about her experience, with the same title. It reminded me about the book sitting on my dresser. It was an very unusually cold weekend in Michigan, we didn’t get above 60, so the boys were content in their cozy PJ’s, playing inside, and I decided to crack open the book.
Some stories take me a few pages or chapters to really immerse myself in, to start believing in the story. This book had me hooked on the first line. I am in love with this format & how well done the authors did it. This book is strictly you flipping through old letters during the war between two women who have never met. Pen pals – the real deal. Glory was given the address of Rita – both on different coast lines – because they both had husbands fighting in the war.
You’re bouncing between two women’s lives as they endure the same waiting game, waiting for the latest V-Mail from their husbands to reassure them they’re still alive, waiting for the dreaded telegram to tell them they’re not. They trade recipes back & forth with ideas on how to “spice up” the limited ration amounts they are allowed to purchase. They trade advice, they lean on each other during hard moments and whisper secrets they wouldn’t share with anyone else.
I was thrilled to learn that not only was the book written in the point of view through letters, but that is literally how this book was written. Suzanne Hayes & Loretta Nyhan, the amazing authors behind this book, have never met. The same as Rita & Glory. They found each other online & emailed back & forth with the idea of writing a book together. Then one day, Suzanne wrote an email to Loretta in Glory’s voice, the first letter in this book. When Loretta wrote back as Rita, they started forming this book.
I couldn’t put it down, I read it from start to finish in three days. Yes…I let the kids watch one more episode of TV than I normally would to do so. Win win right? I had the book cracked open as I put meals together, reading it as I stirred breakfast together or plated up lunch. I gobbled up the story line during naps and stayed up past my bedtime because I just had to know what happened next. I am so excited to pass this book on to a friend to share the magic I just witnessed. I think both of these ladies have a bright future in writing.