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The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah

The Book ✯✯✯✯✯

Kristin Hannah has done it again. Another spectacular historical fiction, The Great Alone is an instant classic that examines how young lives can stubbornly flourish in a land as deadly as it is beautiful.

Ripping your heart out and then piecing it together again, Hannah illuminates the reality of a dark family secret that the great long darkness in Alaska can dredge up from the depths. It reminds us that young love can be true love. And it is the picture of the strength of pioneer women.

While I adored this novel, the biggest issue I had with it was the use of 'Nam to give an explanation as to why Dad beat her mother. While PTSD is a true illness, and one many Vietnam veterans continue to suffer from, it was a disservice to those that came home broken but loving. While PTSD flashbacks can result in domestic violence issues where they still believe they are in a combat zone, this man was evil and rotting long before the war broke him fully. 

That being said, there are descriptions of domestic abuse, alcohol abuse, and PTSD. 

Beautifully done, and the perfect pick for a book club, I can still claim Hannah as one of my most favorite contemporary adult fiction authors.


Comments

  1. Looks like interesting read, Nice Review.

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  2. This is one of those books I keep meaning to read and just can't seem to get to...

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    1. Just do it! It's a bigger one and takes a bit more time, and the pacing is more cozy. But if you need a winter read: this is IT.

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  3. Sounds like an interesting read but I do hate it when mental illness is portrayed as the cause of cruel behaviour. I would never intentionally hurt anyone yet I live with mental illness. As you said, the man was cruel prior to going into war. I liked your review and that you pointed out that issue.

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    1. To be fair, the main character goes from a child to a grown woman and ends up recognizing his PTSD was a part of the puzzle, but not the cause of his violence in the end.

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  4. Sounds like an interesting read.

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  5. I got this one from Book of the Month and still need to get around to reading it! I know I need to sooner than later.

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    1. Yes! I finally did after waiting forever. It has to be picked up when you have the time and the patience for a cozy winter pacing.

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  6. This sounds really poignant. I love books set in Alaska too. Great review.

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  7. Great review, this book looks and sounds very intriguing I don't usually read historical fiction books if there is no romance in it but I am really curious and intrigued about this book. Thank you so much for sharing your awesome post.

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