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Readers' Comments for THE NIGHTINGALE

In February, a select group of readers who participated in one of our Women's Fiction Author Spotlight Contests won copies of THE NIGHTINGALE by Kristin Hannah. Take a look at some of the readers' comments to give you more insight into this book... but watch out for SPOILERS!




Julie M. of Hellertown, PA

Thank you so much for sending me this book. I just finished it and it was absolutely amazing. The descriptions were riveting, and the story intense and wonderful. I’d give this book ten stars if Goodreads would let me! Such a good book. I have read books about the Holocaust before, but never a story like this. It was devastating and yet uplifting. A total must read.


Elizabeth A. of Springfield, IL

Thank you for this book. I bought a copy the morning it came in the mail and gave one book to a friend.  It was a remarkable story. I loved it. The two different sisters were beautiful and came to life while I read their story. It was a heartbreaking story, but a wonderful one. I would recommend it over and over and over. Thank you so much.  It will go into the rotation of books at my Ladies Lunch. My friends will love it!


Judy O. of Marshalltown, IA

I can’t thank you enough for sending this wonderful book to me.  I’ve been reading it almost non-stop for the last two days --- driven to find out what happens.  It is just a wonderful story of life in France during WWII.  Every time I read a book about life under German rule, I am incensed to think that such a thing could happen.  Where does that cruelty and disregard for life begin?

I liked the way that the two lives of Vianne and Isabelle were written.  They both did important things in the war to help the cause of the French, but they both suffered greatly in the wake of that.  Even though women didn’t go into the army and actually fight, one can see that the women’s resistance was very important.

[SPOILERS] I particularly like the way that the story was all wrapped up at the end when Vianne went to Paris with her son and ended up speaking at the meeting.  My eyes really filled up when her long-lost son Daniel/Ari came up to her and said he’d been trying to find her for years. [END SPOILERS.]

I just loved it and I’m so glad that I got to read it.


Jayme G. of Virginia Beach, VA

I am so glad that tomorrow is a federal holiday and I don't have to work.  It would be a bit embarrassing to explain that my eyes are swollen and red because I had been blubbering like a baby over the ending of a book. I have read many historical fiction books set during WWII and really didn't think anything new could be said, but under Hannah's gentle guidance, an extraordinary story of a complicated love between two sisters unfolds as each of them tries to survive the war and keep those they love safe in Occupied France. One of my favorite passages in the book was when they were discussing the possibility of being captured by the Gestapo:

"Don't think about who they are. Think about who you are and what sacrifices you can live with and what will break you."

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to read this heartbreakingly beautiful book. Highly recommended.


Sheila S. of Supply, NC

I have been reading the advance publicity for Kristin Hannah’s THE NIGHTINGALE for some time so was very pleased to receive a copy from Bookreporter. I have read many of Hannah’s books and enjoyed them, but with this book I feel that she really raised the level of her writing.  This was a powerful book, and one that I will be thinking about for some time. Her description of life in Nazi-controlled France was mesmerizing --- the everyday deprivations, the crushing fear, the presence of evil. This was balanced by the heroics of brave French citizens. Isabelle, always a rebel, helps form a network to help downed Allied pilots escape from France by traveling over the Pyrenees Mountains into Spain. Her bravery is breathtaking.  Meanwhile her sister, Vianne, the rule-follower, is equally brave in saving Jewish children under the noses of Nazi officers billeting in her home. Each, in her own way, is a heroine and a passeur. Their intertwining stories are beautifully told and are absolutely unforgettable.


Michelle C. of Kenosha, WA

This was the first Kristin Hannah book I have read, and I am now a huge fan. THE NIGHTINGALE was an amazing and stirring novel. It is a true testament to the bonds we hold with family and the bonds of sisters. While we all face tremendous difficulties in our lives, we must hold onto to what is most important to us. This was an amazing book that will stay with me for many years!

Thank you to Bookreporter for another wonderful giveaway and wonderful reading experience! I truly appreciate all that all of do!


Yuka L. of Sammamish, WA

I am a fan of Kristin Hannah and I'm very happy to say that THE NIGHTINGALE does not disappoint! Readers will be transported to France during World War Two and will be caught up in the lives of two sisters. Isabelle craves action and results, and finds that the French Resistance movement is a way for her to fight the Nazis. Vianne is a teacher and a mother who does all she can to protect her family while her husband is away.

This is a story of motherhood, family, sacrifice and the resilience of the human spirit. I enjoyed the well-written and well-researched story, the characters that you feel connected to, and the way Hannah had me smiling in some chapters and reaching for the tissues in others. I'm recommending THE NIGHTINGALE to my family and friends, and I'm looking forward to Hannah's next novel.


Rosa A. of Glen Arm, MD

This is a heartbreaking story that made me think about how lucky we are to live in a time and place where we do not experience war at home. And I do not mean to discount the many families who have men and women serving in our Armed Forces. Set in WWII France, this is about two sisters, Vianne and Isabelle, who live through the war with courage that I cannot comprehend. The story is about their role in the French resistance and what the French people had to go through to survive. This is definitely a book club book. Much to contemplate and discuss.


Ellen S. of Wilmington, DE

THE NIGHTINGALE is a very intense and emotional read. For that reason I did not read it all at once. It is extremely well written and historically accurate. Kristin Hannah is one of my favorite writers and it is nice to see her pursue something perhaps out of her comfort zone.


Peggy B. of Carol Stream, IL

I very much enjoyed THE NIGHTINGALE by Kristin Hannah. I have read other books by her and this was my favorite of them. While I'm not much interested in history, I found the sister dynamic of the two leading characters very intriguing. Such different personalities who end up being very similar as you get through the novel. The atrocities of that war were made more real in the plot. [SPOILERS] I was surprised at the twist at the end --- thinking the whole time one sister was writing it and then finding out differently. [END SPOILERS.] I also was very happy that she shared what happened to all the characters, instead of leaving us hanging. As soon as I had finished this book, I got word from my local library that ALL THE LIGHT WE CANNOT SEE had come in for me --- if you've read that book, you know that it’s also centered around WWII and France and Germany.  I feel much more educated on this subject after both these books.


Kathy C. of Hays, NC

I have just finished reading THE NIGHTINGALE and I absolutely loved it.  It is the best book I have read in quite a while.


Linda D. of Fargo, ND

I’ve read THE NIGHTINGALE and all I have to say is wow! One of the best books I’ve read. I highly recommended it to historical fiction fans, especially those who have read SARAH’S KEY, THE WINTER GARDEN and THOSE WHO SAVE US. Undeniably, this book is a winner!


Deby M. of Blaine, MN

I loved this book. I've read quite a few books lately where the story is set in two separate time periods and the stories flip back and forth. Some of them are confusing, but this wasn't so at all. I was captivated trying to find out who the narrator was in the present day sections. For anyone who enjoys historical fiction, this book will be an absolute treat. While the subject matter is sad, the story is beautifully written and left me wanting to know more about the characters and their lives. I highly recommend this book!


Suzy M. of Tampa, FL

I was disappointed in the book and did not find it well-written. The language was inconsistent with the characters and the story was not enthralling (the premise was interesting though). I read many books every month and do not feel that this is a book I could wholeheartedly recommend. Thank you for the opportunity to read this book, and I may try other of Ms. Hannah's books at some later date. I do appreciate the time and effort authors, editors, and publishers put into the production of books for us to read but with the sheer number of books published, this one just wasn't as good as I would have liked, nor could I ask patrons, friends, and relations to spend their free time reading it.