Friday, 14 September 2012

Friday Recommends...

My Friday Recommended read 

is

The Girl You Left Behind

by




The Girl You Left Behind
Published 27 September 2012
Penguin


My thanks to Real Readers for a review copy in advance of publication


From Goodreads

In 1916 French artist Edouard Lefevre leaves his wife Sophie to fight at the Front. When her town falls into German hands, his portrait of Sophie stirs the heart of the local Kommandant and causes her to risk everything - her family, reputation and life - in the hope of seeing her true love one last time.

Nearly a century later and Sophie's portrait is given to Liv by her young husband shortly before his sudden death. Its beauty speaks of their short life together, but when the painting's dark and passion-torn history is revealed, Liv discovers that the first spark of love she has felt since she lost him is threatened...

In The Girl You Left Behind two young women, separated by a century, are united in their determination to fight for the thing they love most - whatever the cost.


My 5***** Review

This dual time narrative set alternatively in wartime France, and modern day London explores the history of an enigmatic painting which acts as a link between two very different women.

What I enjoyed most about  The Girl You Left Behind was the ease of transition between the dual time frames. 

The story starts in 1916, with the first third of the book involved with Sophie’s story. The description of her life in occupied France is vivid, and made all the more evocative by the sense of unrelenting hardship, and restriction of choices. I felt a sense of loss when Sophie’s part in the story ended, only to be drawn quickly into life in modern London, and newly widowed Liv’s despair at her dreadful financial status. With great skill, the author infuses such warmth into her characters that Liv very quickly becomes as much loved as Sophie, and as the lives of these two very different women intertwine, we are drawn into a story of devastating sorrow. 

I really enjoyed this story; it’s very easy to get emotionally involved with both Sophie and Liv, and as neither time frame outshines the other, I was just as enthralled with the modern day mystery, as I was with the historic setting of occupied France. 

Without doubt  The Girl You Left Behind will be in my top ten reads of 2012 - and if you have never read a book by JoJo Moyes, then please give her books a try - you won’t be disappointed.


There is a prequel to The Girl You left Behind available now as a novella ebook

Honeymoon in Paris: A Novella

2 comments:

  1. I loved this one too, Josie and have been singing the praises of Jojo at my reading group where noone had heard of her!!! Spreading the word, one book at a time... :-)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Treez - I love the thought of spreading the word, one book at a time..:)

    Jojo Moyes seems to go from strength to strength !

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for taking the time to comment - Jaffa and I appreciate your interest.