Tuesday, May 26, 2015

It's You, by Jane Porter

Penguin Group, ISBN 9780425277157, June 2015

Over a year after his death, Alison McAdams is still emotionally hamstrung by the suicide of her fiancé, Andrew Morris. It doesn't help that her mother died a few weeks after that, and it may not help that Alison, a dentist, as Andrew was, is working in Andrew's father's dental practice. She'd like her father, now living in a retirement community in Napa Valley, to come live with her in Scottsdale, but he refuses.

Reluctantly, she takes a month off of work to go visit her father.

On the plane flight, she makes a new friend, Diana, a florist. At Napa Estates, she meets her father's friends, including a very prickly old woman named Edie Stephens. Edie had gone to Germany to study music before WWII, then went to work for the US Embassy there, and met and fell in love with a German officer, Franz.

Edie and Ali keep annoying each other, but they also keep coming back to each other. They start telling each other things they've never told anyone else. And Edie shares her diary of the war years, an American living in Berlin, married to a German officer.

Neither finds what they expect to find.

We get the story in both voices, or rather three: Ali's, Edie's now, and Edie during the war, in her diary. And the more Ali gets drawn into Edie's story, her heart breaks again, and starts to heal.

Edie and Ali are both compelling and moving characters, and I became totally drawn in to their shared and intermingled stories. Highly recommended.

I received a free electronic galley of this book from the publisher via NetGalley.