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Monday, November 12, 2012

The Girl You Left Behind by JoJo Moyes

A lost painting, an involved court case, and a moving love story which crosses the generations. What could be better?  I am a big fan of JoJo Moyes and she hasn't let readers down with this large novel.

The first part of the story involves Sophie, a desperate young French woman trying to survive in the First World War.  Before he left for the war, Sophie's artist husband painted a beautiful portrait of her.  Unfortunately, the German Kommandant of the tiny village falls in love with Sopie and Sophie determines to risk everything to save her husband.

Years later, Liv, a pretty young widow is also in trouble.  Her husband gave her the painting but when she falls in love with Paul, she learns about the bitter history of the art.  The painting comes between the lovers and Liv decides to do anything to find out Sophie's true story.

Sensitively written and intricate, the involved and suspense-filled story will keep most readers up late.  I loved the characters and the interesting historical background.  I do have to admit to almost giving this book up, however.  The beginning is extremely harrowing so be warned.  My advice is to keep reading if you want to enjoy a great story.

Another problem is that I read this on my computer which I found difficult.  It's the kind of book which should be enjoyed while lying in a hammock in the garden in spring or before a crackling fire in the winter.  However, I got this free from Net Galley so I am extremely thankful.

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