The book is historical fiction and is based on the Nazi occupation of France during WWII. The story follows two sisters, Vianne and Isabelle, who handle the occupation in very different ways based on their personalities. Vianne, the elder sister, is very conservative and shy. She is also a wife and mother and is determined to do her best to keep her head down and protect her house and child during the occupation. Isabelle is very outspoken and is equally determined to do what she can to help France in their fight against Germany.
Each woman has their own insecurities and difficulties in their past that they must overcome in the very trying time of war. Hannah not only shows growth of both characters throughout the story but also ties this is beautifully with the struggles that not only the Jewish citizens of France went through in the war but those who were left behind when the Nazi's implemented their "Final Solution."
I learned a great deal about this time period while reading this novel and was very sad when the book ended. I will be reading more by this author in the future.
I give this book 5 stars.