[F]ractured but fine-tuned narrative revealed through the sum of its pieced-together parts. The story is based on actual events and told from the perspective of six distantly related characters in alternating chapters stretching from New York in 1939 to France throughout WWII, and to East Sussex, England, and Los Angeles, Calif., both in 2010.... Using restraint and a subtle dose of foreshadowing,...the writing is what makes this remarkable book soar.
[A] spare, elliptical story of human connection, framed by the horror of World War II.... [T]he narrative leaps back and forth in time, introducing characters and events whose associations emerge slowly.... Verdict: At first glance, clues to what's happening seem uncomfortably scattered; at second glance, the story snaps together beautifully. A brilliant if elusive novel that shows how a single act can echo through time; definitely recommended, though not for easy-reading folks. —Barbara Hoffert
Wartime violence prompts a handful of lives to intersect deeply.... [T]he author retains an abiding interest in interconnectedness, and his tone remains poetic and optimistic.... [T]he overall sense is that Van Booy is foregrounding a we're-all-in-this-together theme that many novelists needlessly obscure. This gentle book feels like a retort: Why not just say how much we owe each other? And so Van Booy does.
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