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Night Music: A Novel Paperback – February 18, 2018
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"The central characters are bold and courageous as they seek out their place in the world. Beautifully written, not easily forgotten." --Readers' Favorite
About the Author
Deanna Lynn Sletten is the author of MAGGIE'S TURN, FINDING LIBBIE, ONE WRONG TURN, and several other titles. She writes heartwarming women's fiction and romance novels with unforgettable characters. She has also written one middle-grade novel that takes you on the adventure of a lifetime. Deanna believes in fate, destiny, love at first sight, soul mates, second chances, and happily ever after, and her novels reflect that.
Deanna is married and has two grown children. When not writing, she enjoys walking the wooded trails around her home with her beautiful Australian Shepherd, traveling, and relaxing on the lake.
Connect with Deanna at her website: deannalsletten.com
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Night Music takes us to a tough time in our past, the Vietnam War period. Emotions were high and there were very strong opinions and feelings on both sides of the issue. It was a very tumultuous time in our history, a very troubled time for young men and women. This story took me back to that time and the craziness of that war. I lived through it and she gets it. She does a wonderful job of capturing both the turmoil and the love of that time.
Charlotte's older brother is killed in Vietnam and she finds herself between two men who have very opposite feelings about the war. There's Deke, her boyfriend, who is leading campus protests against the war and Joe, a Vietnam vet, who comes back having to deal with the aftermath of that controversial war.
I loved watching Charlotte mature and form her own opinions and beliefs as she learns what matters most to her. She works very hard to see both sides, in order to understand where the two men are coming from. She finally listens to what is in her own heart and sticks up for her beliefs.
One of the things that will stay with me and that I just love from this book is the term 'night music', the wonderful melody of the sounds of the night – crickets, frogs, etc.
"In Nam, as long as we could hear the sounds of the night, we knew we were safe. It's a comforting sound."
I love to relax on the patio in the evening and listen to the sounds. I never thought of it as 'night music' but that's exactly what it is. I'll always think of that now and will be drawn back to this wonderful story.
Charlotte joined a college group of girls and decided to send letters to Army men and try and find answers as to why young men are dyeing. She ends up corresponding with this soldier, Joseph (Joe) and other than Char, he has no one. They write for a long time and Char tells him all about her wonderful small town and about her life until one day his letters just stop.
Joe is living day by day through the letters from Char, after a war injury, he is sent back home and decides to start over in the small town that he's been dreaming of. Thinking he may get a glimpse of the girl that has stolen his heart, he moves into this rental and starts school. What he doesn't expect is to see more of her than he expected.
Char is dating a loud and obnoxious boy that is very anti war. Deke is trying to get everyone on his side, start rallies and do everything possible to stop the war. Deke is not a friendly person to any of the war veterans especially the boys coming back from Vietnam. When he sees Char hanging around Joe, something snaps and sends him into an even more crazy state.
This was a wonderful story that I can't say enough good things about. I read it in just over a day and will happily read it again soon. The romance between these characters is so sweet and real, the story paints such a clear picture in your mind and the story holds you captive until the very last page. This isn't one of Deanna's normal stories like she has written lately but for sure one of my favorites!
Most of the characters were believable. There was a sweet love story between Char and Joe. Some of the anti-war rhetoric was quite unbelievable. The character of Deke was more of a cartoon character when it came to his anti-war activities. Things were much more organized and more violent in reality. Char was wishy-washy when it came to how she felt about the war. Joe, having lived it, knew exactly what he believed.
I would recommend Night Music.
I received a free copy of the book from NetGalley and Deanna Lynn Sletten in exchange for my honest review. Thank you.
A wounded Vietnam veteran seeking the American Dream in a small town in the early seventies, against the background of the anti-war movement and college student activism.
Joe is a wonderful character, wounded but not bitter or resentful, an honest, gentle and kind man. It’s great that his character is shown through his actions and dialogue.
I found Charlotte a bit naïve sometimes and a bit too easy to manipulate, but she’s a good counterpoint to the hero.
I enjoyed the slow romance, really ideal for Joe to accomplish his dream in this small town (Grand Falls) context.
The author tries to offer different perspectives on the US intervention in the Vietnam War, simultaneously depicting the ravages of war on American soldiers (PTSD, suicide, disabilities).