Rarely does any book strike me so hard with its brutality and honest that leaves me in tears. But when it does, I make sure to recommend it to every second person on the street. Okay, that’s taking it a bit too far, but you get the idea.
One such book has been The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah which questions humanity, kindness, friendship and family ties. It teaches that actual kindness and friendship is helping a person because they are human, not because they belong to the same nationality as you. It also reiterates the age old belief that friendship aside, nothing comes in the way of family.
It is a tale of love and belonging at the time of war, the war here being the Second World War. It is a tale which answers the question ‘How far will you go and how much will you sacrifice for your country?’ It is a tale which spans the past and the present, love and hate, Germans and French, set in France and America. It is a tale about the Rossignols(French for Nightingales) and how their belief in a free France leads them to aid the French, save Jews from concentration camps, spy on the Germans, help the French, American and Canadian RAF pilots to cross the difficult and treacherous Pyrenees, lie to their loved ones, and even commit murder.
The whole book can be summed up in the first line of the book itself
‘In love we find out who we want to be. In war we find out who we really are’
This book will be the best book you’ll ever read. Keep a few tissues handy.