The Stars are Fire
As reviewed in our May newsletter:
Centered around the historic true event of the catastrophic disaster of 1947 when a severe drought caused fires to rage uncontrollably through Maine devastating and burning homes to the ground leaving thousands homeless and 16 dead.
Grace Holland is alone with her two children, her husband Gene out voluntarily helping to fight the fires. With the speed of the fire catching them unawares at night she flees along with her neighbour Rosie down the sea where they lie in the freezing water until they are rescued in the morning. Without any word or whereabouts of her husband she is taken into care by an older couple until she is well enough to consider what next. Along with her mother they move into the prestigious home of her mother-in-law recently deceased, a woman who never liked her. She begins to rebuild her life , her independence and finds a happiness that was missing while married to Gene. Until one day things change and she is put to the test as never before.
I'm sure all Anita Shreve fans will enjoy this latest book. Christine
1947. After a summer-long drought, fires are racing along the coast of Maine, ravaging two hundred thousand acres - the largest fire in the state's history. Five months pregnant, Grace Holland is left alone to protect her two toddlers when her husband Gene joins the volunteers fighting to bring the fire under control. Along with her best friend, Rosie, and Rosie's two young children, the women watch in horror as their houses go up in flames, then walk into the ocean as a last resort. They spend the night frantically trying to save their children. When dawn comes, they have miraculously survived, but their lives are forever changed: homeless, penniless, and left to face an uncertain future in a town that no longer exists. As Grace awaits news of her husband's fate, she is thrust into a new world in which she must make a life on her own, beginning with absolutely nothing - she must find work, a home, a way to provide for her children. In the midst of devastating loss, Grace discovers glorious new freedoms - joys and triumphs she could never have expected her narrow life with Gene could contain - and her spirit soars. And then the unthinkable happens, and Grace's bravery is tested as never before.
Delicate, poignant storytelling Good Housekeeping
Anita Shreve is the acclaimed author of seventeen novels, including Rescue, A Change in Altitude, Testimony, andThe Pilot's Wife, which was a selection of Oprah's Book Club. She lives in Massachusetts.