Band of Sisters by Annette Lyon
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Wow. This book is one of the best I've read this year. It's definitely my favorite by Annette Lyon.
Here's the book blurb.
When the war on terror calls their husbands to duty, five LDS women are left behind to fight battles of their own: Kim, newlywed and pregnant, frightened of what the future might bring. Brenda, struggling to manage three unruly boys and a crippling bout of depression. Jessie, secretly grappling with mixed feelings about her crumbling marriage. Marianne, wrestling with a rebellious teenage daughter. And Nora, the seasoned Army wife with perfect hair, an immaculate home—and an ill-tempered mother dying of cancer.
Knowing the separation of deployment is extremely difficult, Nora gathers the wives every week to share lunches and burdens. In good company, they worry over safety in the field and stability at home and offer one another counsel and comfort.
But as their personal crises build, each woman faces the risks of forming deep bonds of trust. And when tragedy strikes, they must confront the painful realities of war that pull families apart and bring friends together as sisters.
Lyon does a fantastic job creating five distinct and real women, and I was able to identify with each in some way. Her writing is compelling, and the way she sets up the chapters had me not wanting to stop, with each chapter focusing on a different woman. There were a couple times I felt like she head jumped, but it was never so big of a jump that I got confused or was bothered by it.
Read it expecting to laugh, to see yourself (even if your husband isn't in the Army), and with a box of tissues. Last night Nathan asked me both, "What's so funny?" and if something was wrong because I was crying so hard. He thought there might be something more than just a sad part in the book, but nope.
While I'm not positive, the book's dedication leads me to believe that there is some truth to the novel. Lyon dedicated it to five women and their husbands who served in the military, so while I know it's fiction, I can't help wondering if there's some truth to the story.
One really cool thing I learned on Lyon's website is she is willing to participate in your book club via telephone or in person if you choose to use the book. I thought that was pretty awesome.
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