I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the author. All views expressed are only my honest opinion. Affiliate link included. Full Disclosure Here.
Have you ever read a book that you want to read again just so that you can enjoy it once more? This is one of those for me. Every page was grand and I couldn’t stop reading. In fact, it’s my number one book so far this year. This dual time-line book goes back and forth from 1905-1998. It’s based on a true place but the main characters are fictional. On the Penikese Island off the coast of Massachusetts, a leper hospital existed in the early 1900’s.
A family with two daughters was experiencing tragedy after their mother died and the father drank heavily and beat the youngest. The oldest girl, Atta, was to marry and take Gertie with her (saving her from her Papi). Then Atta was diagnosed with Leprosy and taken to Penikese Island to be treated. She was desperate to save Gertie and after time rowed back to her. Then Gertie got Leprosy and joined her on the island.
They went through horrible experimental treatments and their story was an emotional and terrifying read. But, Atta and her doctor were falling in love even though they knew they could never be together. All the characters were so interesting.
In the contemporary time, Emily is the granddaughter of Gertie and is going through an awful time herself. After a bad decision, this high school girl is pregnant and her parents have dropped her off at her grandmother’s house. Her father is a politician and doesn’t want her situation to ruin his chances of winning. She has a hard time at school, but makes a friend at the library.
She finds a picture of her relative on Penikese Island and convinces her grandmother to tell her the story about her past. It’s an amazing story and I can’t begin to tell you how wonderful it is. It truly relates to me, when I read Atta’s story as she tries to become content in all her circumstances.
The author gives many amazing scripture passages and hymns that are perfect in each moment when you feel like Atta can’t possibly handle one more minute of her miserable life. The book is filled with true Christian thought, grace, and love. Please read it!
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