Wednesday, May 4, 2011
Review: Far To Go by Alison Pick
Publisher: Harper Perennial
Pages: 336 pgs
Genre: Historical Fiction/World War II
Challenges-100+ Reading Challenge, Outdo Yourself Reading Challenge
Buy this Book: Amazon, Powell's, Indiebound
Summary from publisher:
When Czechoslovakia relinquishes the Sudetenland to Hitler, the powerful influence of Nazi propaganda sweeps through towns and villages like a sinister vanguard of the Reich's advancing army. A fiercely patriotic secular Jew, Pavel Bauer is helpless to prevent his world from unraveling as first his government, then his business partners, then his neighbors turn their back on his affluent, once-beloved family. Only the Bauers' adoring governess, Marta, sticks by Pavel, his wife, Anneliese, and their little son, Pepik, bound by her deep affection for her employers and friends. But when Marta learns of their impending betrayal at the hands of her lover, Ernst, Pavel's best friend, she is paralyzed by her own fear of discovery—even as the endangered family for whom she cares so deeply struggles with the most difficult decision of their lives.
Interwoven with a present-day narrative that gradually reveals the fate of the Bauer family during and after the war, Far to Go is a riveting family epic, love story, and psychological drama.
I am going to do something that I very rarely do on this blog. I am going to gush about a book and it’s going to be pretty disgusting because I loved this book…hard.
I fell in love with this book from page one. I loved Marta as the narrator. Her POV was excellent. She was a part of it but her outside look at the family was amazing. Her POV was really amazing and I found her voice to be engaging and reliable. Pavel and Anneliese were also great. They were in such an impossible situation but their sole concern was the well-being of their little boy. Pepik was such a sweet little boy. His innocence in the face of this situation was such a contrast and was so powerful.
Far To Go kind of reminded me of one of my favorite books from my early blogging days—Galway Bay. I don’t even know why because they are about completely different things. Perhaps it’s because of the writing and the focus on a family. But it’s a complete compliment because Galway Bay is one of my favorites and this may be as well. This one had the narrative strength of Galway Bay with just the right amount of emotional connection. The writing is also extremely strong. Pick conveyed the emotions and point of views of the Bauer family perfectly and also managed to give Marta a strong voice. I also love how the book weaves between the past and the present. It's really fluid and not jarring at all. I did not know much about the Kindertransport before reading Far To Go but now find myself with the insatiable need to read about it.
*A copy of this book was provided to me by the publisher for review. My opinion is my own and has not been influenced in any way and any monies made from associate or affiliate accounts are recycled back into the blog.