Wednesday, April 1, 2015

After the War is Over (Jennifer Robson)

Last year, with book club, we read Somewhere in France. This is the second book in the series. I have never really read a series as it comes out. This has been fun. We really had a wonderful time discussing this book.

It is Spring Break and I had great plans to do a lot of reading. Last week I ended up spending s bunch of time in the hospital and did absolutely no reading. Tuesday we went on a road trip. I didn't do any reading then either. So today I was in a time crunch. I spent the day reading this book in just one sitting. It was a wonderful day!
This was a great book for discussion. Everyone had lots of comments to add to the discussion. I learned a lot about WWI. Sometimes with historical fiction it is hard to know what is true and what is fiction. It seemed like this book had a lot of truth and it was a great way to learn about history. For example, I learned at book club, that apparently Miss Rathbone, the lady that Charlotte worked for, was a real person in history. It seems the author has done a great job researching these books.
I liked that this book leaned a little more towards feminism. In the first book, I realized that they were all just products of their time, but the lack of opportunity women had really drove me crazy. I loved how Charlotte stood up for herself and was strong in this book.
Apparently Jennifer Robson is working on another book. I'll definitely read that one too!
The internationally bestselling author of Somewhere in France returns with her sweeping second novel—a tale of class, love, and freedom—in which a young woman must fnd her place in a world forever changed

After four years as a military nurse, Charlotte Brown is ready to leave behind the devastation of the Great War. The daughter of a vicar, she has always been determined to dedicate her life to helping others. Moving to busy Liverpool, she throws herself into her work with those most in need, only tearing herself away for the lively dinners she enjoys with the women at her boardinghouse.

Just as Charlotte begins to settle into her new circumstances, two messages arrive that will change her life. One is from a radical young newspaper editor who offers her a chance to speak out for those who cannot. The other pulls her back to her past, and to a man she has tried, and failed, to forget.

Edward Neville-Ashford, her former employer and the brother of Charlotte's dearest friend, is now the new Earl of Cumberland—and a shadow of the man he once was. Yet under his battle wounds and haunted eyes Charlotte sees glimpses of the charming boy who long ago claimed her foolish heart. She wants to help him, but dare she risk her future for a man who can never be hers?

As Britain seethes with unrest and postwar euphoria fattens into bitter disappointment, Charlotte must confront long-held insecurities to find her true voice . . . and the courage to decide if the life she has created is the one she truly wants.
Lilly and Charlotte regarding Lilly's mother (p. 35):
"How has she been treating you?"
"More or less as she always does - which is to say she ignores me whenever possible, and tolerates me when she cannot ignore me."
p. 139:
Had she ever spent an entire day having fun? She sifted through her memories, but couldn't recall a single instance - not when she was at university, not when she was Lilly's governess, not in all the years with Miss Rathbone, and certainly not during the war. There had been afternoons in the park, evenings out with friends, the occasional lazy hour or two reading a book that was entertaining rather than improving, but she'd never felt she could spend a day simply enjoying life.

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