The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah
The darkness seeps into your soul up in Alaska, just like the land. It’s enough to drive a man…well, you’ll have to read it to find out.
This book took me a little longer than usual to get into it, but the payoff is totally worth it! A vast, sweeping story, just like the mysterious land where it takes place.
I love the setting – 1970s Alaska. Very unique. There’s lot in here that reminded me of growing up in the 70s, but also, there was so much about Alaska back then, which blew me away. The raw, un-settled, wild land plays a major role in the story and I feel like Alaska is my friend now, but not the kind of friend you invite for a sleep-over.
Leni is the character we cheer for, and her mom is a character we cringe at every time she makes another choice. And then there’s Leni’s dad. As a Vietnam vet, he’s dealing with a lot after the war. And then he takes his family to Alaska with no preparation and no knowledge of what it takes to actually survive the wilds of that unforgiving country.
I loved learning about survival and the land. I loved the gradual character arcs and the slow deterioration of a family. I hoped right alongside Leni. I hoped for the best. I hoped she would get a better deal. I hoped the winter wouldn’t be too harsh.
Kristin Hannah has a knack for making the reader care. She pulls us into the story, and makes us feel what the characters feel and that’s great and awful twisted up together like a swirly half and half ice cream cone. A heartbreak of a story, it’s a wonderful read. After the first 50 pages, I couldn’t put it down. Highly recommend!
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