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I'll Be Seeing You Paperback – May 28, 2013


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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Readers of Hayes and Nyhan’s entertaining epistolary novel will be transported to 1940s America, when people on the home front watched, waited, and worried about loved ones fighting overseas. Two women, separated by age, circumstances, and geography, find each other through a 4-H address exchange for war wives. Their correspondence reveals that Glory, from well-off New England society, is a young mom who “went from debutante to war bride,” while the more practical Rita is a professor’s wife who lives in the heartland and has both a husband and a grown son in the armed forces. Authentic touches bring the era alive. Allusions to sharing an easy recipe that “doesn’t touch the sugar ration,” recycling tinfoil, anti-German bigotry, blacked-out portions of censored V-mail, and victory gardens all provide a specific, everyday context for such timeless and universal passages and struggles as birth, death, grief, wartime temptations, divided loyalties, and hope. Interspersed is correspondence with the men in service, adding layers to Hayes and Nyhan’s deeply satisfying tale. --Whitney Scott

Review

"Engaging, charming and moving, a beautifully rendered exploration of WWII on the homefront and the type of friendship that helps us survive all manner of battles."
-Kirkus (starred review)

"Timeless and universal...[a] deeply satisfying tale."
-Booklist

"A wonderful affirmation of the life-enhancing potential of female friendship." -Margaret Leroy, author of The Soldier's Wife

"I devoured this story in one greedy, glorious gulp. Oh, the women! I love them. I love their families and their voices and their stories. I bet you'll love them, too." -Marisa de los Santos, bestselling author of Love Walked In

"A delight! I'll Be Seeing You made me want to get out a pen and paper and write a friend a good old-fashioned letter." -Sarah Jio, author of The Violets of March

"Original and heartfelt...Set in World War II, yet somehow timeless, this novel is as beautifully written as it is captivating. An absolutely terrific debut." -Sarah Pekkanen, author of The Opposite of Me

"Women on the WWII home front faced loneliness and terrible fears. But I'll Be Seeing You tells the compelling story of two women who endured, bolstered by duty, love and, most important, friendship. I read this sweet, compassionate novel with my heart in my throat." -Kelly O'Connor McNees, author of The Lost Summer of Louisa May Alcott

"Vivid and well-crafted, I'll Be Seeing You poignantly illustrates the hopes and struggles of life on the home front. Readers will laugh, cry and be inspired by this timeless story of friendship and courage." -Pam Jenoff, bestselling author of The Kommandant's Girl
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Harlequin MIRA; Original edition (May 28, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0778314952
  • ISBN-13: 978-0778314950
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (179 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #40,678 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

32 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Tara VINE VOICE on May 28, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
When I first realized this book was written entirely in letters...I thought "uh oh...all telling, no showing."

I couldn't have been more wrong.

Yes, it's all told through letters, but the words draw you into the page. As I read, I stepped back in time, into the lives of two women left on the home-front during WWII. Everything--from their gardens to their recipes to their nosy neighbors all served to totally transport me and draw me in.

Two pen-pals develop an incredible bond. And I found myself comparing these two women to modern-day women on Facebook. We make friendships, incredible ones, through the Internet, so I believe many friendships were made back then via snail mail.

Rita is an older woman. She has a grown son in the Navy and her husband is also serving. She has so much to lose. Her strength helps those around her, as well as Glory across the country. Glory is much younger and at times, stupid, but she's discovering herself.

There's worry and fear and all kinds of guilt in their letters. There's infidelity. There's grief. There's conflicting emotions. There are pregnancies. There's romance. (Now, remember, these ladies are talking about others in their lives too.)

There's so much really within these letters, but I'm just going to mention two things I loved very much...I felt Glory's story, her changes, really showed the evolution of women during this time. First, she learns to take care of a house without servants, she then begins to speak up for women's rights, and by the end of the war, she's looking around her and speaking for all rights. Her story, despite some of her wrongdoings, really spoke to me. The Glory pre-war was not the same woman after the war.

Rita...Rita changes too.
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By momof3 on May 29, 2013
Format: Paperback
I simply couldn't put this book down! It kept me reading through the evening hours and I finally had to force myself to go to sleep so that I would be able to function at work the next day. My advice is to make sure that you are wearing sunglasses while reading on your commute, at the pool or at your desk over lunch. I went through that ugly sob cycle. You know the one where your eyes and nose get really red and you inadvertently suck in that big sob so you don't look like an idiot, but wind up sounding even worse... Now add to that the spontaneous guffaw and you will understand why my family was starting to think that I had lost it.

Sure this is an epistolary set during WW II which is cool in and of itself, but it is so much more than that. It is also a story of true friendship. Rita and Glory are thrown together by chance and through their letters find unconditional support and acceptance during a very difficult time. They face the everyday battle on the home front and the consequences for decisions made. Dare I say BIG decisions at times? I won't include any spoilers, but suffice it to say that it is definitely a page turner.

Nyhan and Hayes did a very good job of creating characters that were relatable and interesting. What impressed me also was that they were able to add in historically accurate extras, such as recipes using rations, that instead of seeming trite fit into the story seamlessly. I definitely recommend this book to family and friends.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Janet on June 20, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
When I read the premise of the book, a story relate din letters, I was immediately reminded of why I liked The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. I was hoping for the same type of emotional response. I was not disappointed by my response. I did enjoy the book. I just had a hard time distinguishing the characters voices, one from another. The letters needed more differentiation accounting for age and background - which should have affected speech patterns and idioms.
I rated it 3 stars. Though I liked the story, I wasn't captivated by the character's voices.
*I received my copy from NetGalley.com in exchange for an honest review.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Jenny on May 28, 2013
Format: Paperback
"I'll Be Seeing You" is a beautifully written tale of love, loss, sacrifice and hope set in the WWII era. What's unique and especially entertaining about this novel is that it's written entirely from the perspective of two women on the home front, Rita and Glory, who have never met in real life but who have become pen pals (and in an interesting twist, this is mirrored by the two authors, who as of the publication date have not yet met in person). Through Rita and Glory's individual stories, we get a glimpse at the sacrifice and daily life of women on the home front and their numerous struggles including fear for their men on the front, more minor frustrations like creating family meals on rations or caring for a sick child as, essentially, a single parent. Little do the women realize what a source of strength and support they will become for each other as the war drags on and their lives become increasingly intertwined. Written as a series of letters between the two women and with plenty of wonderful period detail including the "ration recipes" of WWII, "I'll Be Seeing You" is moving, funny, poignant and always entertaining. The growing friendship between Rita and Glory -- two women at two very different stages of their lives -- had me hooked from the first page and it had me in tears more than once. A stunning debut -- I can't wait to read more from these talented authors.
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