To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.
When We Were Strangers: A Novel Paperback – January 25, 2011
See the Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
From Publishers Weekly
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
More About the Author
Read excerpts, reviews, check out the photo gallery, or get in touch at www.PamelaSchoenewaldt.com
Top Customer Reviews
She started out in Cleveland looking for her brother who left before her but soon moved on to Chicago. Irma had a skill as a seamstress and the talent she possessed to create intricate works of art from pieces of cloth earned her an income and a living enough to move on to San Francisco to start yet again in the field of medicine. Irma was a believer who never stopped to wallow in self-pity and always said thank you for the good this new life brought.
Her life was never easy; the times were difficult on good days and despondent on others. She worked hard, never complained and suffered such atrocities no one should endure but still she moved on. But the Opi girl became an American Woman and showed everyone what determination looks like and how to be something when everyone tells you that you are nothing.
Irma is an accumulation of each of our ancestries who did not start out but came to America and made a great life for the generations that followed. Poverty was a way of life and Ms. Schonwewaldt writes this with such clarity you stomach starts to grumble with the hunger these people felt. In this time of immigration critiquing it might be nice to have someone read this book and remember that everyone has a dream to live a better life and shouldn't we be proud they believe all this is possible in the United States of America.
I mean, it's about time I read a b0ok in 2011 that gripped me as much as this book did and honestly, the binding I got for the Advanced Copy was rough to read, the words were half-faded and still, I didn't mind at all. Not a single bit. Because the story was that powerful.
Irma is a woman with strength, character, and resolve, yet also I found in her innocence, fear, and a sense of loneliness. This character in a story exhibited every trait that I would strive to have when finding myself faced with the challenges she faced. This is an immigration story that, though told on a nearly day-by-day, common occurrences basis, was filled with adventure, longing, hope and more.
Pamela Schoenewaldt writes so beautifully about Italy, about the culture, the food, the scenery. She describes with a brush of truth what life would have been like for a plain girl such as Irma. Without emotion to cloud the story (other than Irma's own emotion), I followed the ups and downs of every event with my heart in my throat. Honestly, this would make for a fantastic book club discussion book and I intend to write it down on my list.
Fantastic, powerful novel and I'm so thankful to TLC Tours for providing me with the opportunity to read it.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The storyline does not progress fast, but it kept me interested. I wanted to see what would happen next, I didn't want to stop reading.Published 2 months ago by Lucia C.
Did not care for the style of writing. Unfortunately, it was a club member's choice right after we had read THE SHOEMAKER'S WIFE which was one of the most beautifully written and... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Claire W
Beautiful prose. Well researched. I enjoyed the vivid depictions of Irma's journey and interactions. I never considered many of the challenges people like her must have faced. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Jack_Roberts
I don't gravitate toward historical novels, but something about this one appealed enough to buy it. I was riveted from the beginning. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Dawn A. Lajeunesse
Absolutely loved this book. The story is told in a very touching and sensitive way, so it kept me interested and I had a hard time putting it down.Published 8 months ago by Clasina Gm Oneill
Awesome book with a great story and many interesting characters. Definitely recommend!Published 8 months ago by Amazon fan