Now available in mass market paperback for the first time, this novel by the #1 "New York Times" bestselling author takes readers on an unforgettable journey into a harrowing world where forbidden passions have catastrophic consequences.
As in her earlier novels, Shreve (Eden Close) affectingly explores themes of love and loss with piercing clarity, once again capturing the fragile emotions of those in pain. Here, however, she moves from her customary domestic, contemporary milieu to WWII Europe�to the Belgian village of Delahaut, where young Claire Daussois and her husband, Henri, are members of an underground resistance movement. When a British plane goes down outside the town in December 1943, the plucky 10-year-old Jean Benoit finds a survivor, Ted Brice, hides him in his father's barn and then summons the aid of Mme. Daussois. As she has done with other refugees, Claire shelters the 22-year-old captain in her attic. When it becomes necessary for Henri to go into hiding, Claire and Ted embark on a brief affair, a passionate liaison made more poignant by its simultaneous inevitability and futility. With deceptive simplicity and superb control, Shreve evokes the impersonal horrors of wartime and its heartbreaking personal tragedies�often combining those elements to almost overwhelming effect, as when Jean witnesses the execution of several townspeople as reprisal for their resistance activities. (Apr.)
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Little, Brown and Company
March 31, 1996
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