Wednesday, July 25, 2012

The Bungalow by Sarah Jio

In the summer of 1942, twenty-one-year-old Anne Calloway, newly engaged, sets off to serve in the Army Nurse Corps on the Pacific island of Bora-Bora. More exhilarated by the adventure of a lifetime than she ever was by her predictable fiancé, she is drawn to a mysterious soldier named Westry, and their friendship soon blossoms into hues as deep as the hibiscus flowers native to the island. Under the thatched roof of an abandoned beach bungalow, the two share a private world-until they witness a gruesome crime, Westry is suddenly redeployed, and the idyll vanishes into the winds of war. A timeless story of enduring passion, The Bungalow chronicles Anne's determination to discover the truth about the twin losses-of life, and of love-that have haunted her for seventy years.
Initial Thoughts:
Uh, the title of the book is The Bungalow. Which means I was sold from the get go.

The Pros:
This is wonderfully executed historical fiction. I was so involved in the characters lives, that by the end of the book I was so sad to be finished.

The way that the author paints a picture of the island really makes you feel like you were there with Anne.

I learned a lot about WWII and how bases were during this time.

The dynamic between Anne and her best friend, Kitty, changes throughout the book which kept me guessing.

There were so many twists and turns that this book was nearly impossible to put down.

The way the story was told from the past and the present was very interesting.

The Cons:
I didn't like who Anne ended up "choosing".

Gerard's character was vastly underdeveloped.

I couldn't get a feel for how I really felt about Anne's mother. 

Kitty's motives were unclear. Why did she do all of those horrible things? What changed her so much?

The Wrap Up: 4.5/5
I loved this book. I finished it in one sitting. After I finished, I had that heavy heart feeling. The one I get after reading a truly great love story.

Favorite Quote:
"He was there, of course - in uniform, shyly smiling at me as the waves fell into the shore. I could hear them - their violent crash, followed by the fizz of a million bubbles kissing the sand."

Click here to get your copy of The Bungalow.

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