Thursday, October 6, 2016
In the beginning was Mabel and Bertie. In the summer of 1927 Mabel knew something would soon happen to Bertie and that the only way to escape would be to take her sister away. She thought she planned out the only way things could be done to give them a restart at life. Only, something went wrong. Bertie never got on the train. Suddenly both Mabel and Bertie are thrown out into the world, alone and uncertain, and full of emotions they keep tucked away from prying eyes.
What follows is a story like most others, Mabel finds herself in photography and unusual friendships, Bertie marries and devotes herself to making sure her little family holds together. But the original tragedy colors everything.
Jensen weaves a tale that may seem simple enough, only that there is a thread running through all of it that most of the characters are never aware of even as it changes things for them permanently. This family that hides truths about what they are doing, what they feel, and they change the course of each other's lives with these hidden facets. Amazingly, something that happened in 1927 effects the great-granddaughters in 2007, even as the child has no idea of the events that occurred.
Not only is this an amazing story to show how tragedy colors each and every one of us without us having gone through the event itself, Jensen is an incredible writer. Her imagination is vast as she develops this family and chronicles their lives. At the worst moments in the book she gives us just enough of the scene to make it stick with you, make you cringe, without having to take it too far. And her characters are so diverse and real that you can't help but feel for each and every one of them.
I am so glad that picked up this novel and I will be looking for more of Jensen's works in the future! I recommend everyone pick this book up!