Books have a way of reflecting or blending into our lives, and this is part of what makes or breaks a book. It's the internal and external moments in our lives that coincide with the books we read. We might need a book to make us feel not so alone, laugh, take us to another dimension or simply keep us company. At this time in my life, On Folly Beach by Karen White happens to blend with my life. I have lived in Germany and I'm still coping with the loss of my mother. This is what attracted me to On Folly Beach.
On Folly Beach switches from present day 2009 to 1942, during World War II, showing the struggles of two women, Emmy and Maggie, who are trying to cope with their lives and loss. Emmy lost her soldier husband in Afghanistan, and Maggie lost her love to the perils of war through secrets and deception. Even though these women were from different times, they were brought together by the things in life that keep us all going and that can make us crumble--love and loss. Emmy tries to remain the person her husband, Ben, fell in love with while fighting with the fact that she never said good-bye. This haunts her and prevents her from letting go and moving on with life. Maggie has taken care of everyone else but herself. The people in her life are secretive, and the man, Peter, she has waited for her entire life deceives her in many ways. From one lie to the next, Maggie is able to overcome and forgive. Both of these women carry the same phrase in their hearts--Come back to me.
I either liked or disliked the characters in this book, and to some degree, understood their troubles. Most of all I had the pleasure of crying with Emmy and Maggie. This book demonstrates the sacrifices of war, and I learned about how close the Germans were in taking over the U.S. with spies and U-boats. Seeing Germany and the U.S. today gives me a greater appreciation of the struggles German citizens had under Hitler's dictatorship, and how Americans dealt with the scarcity of supplies for the sake of defending our land.
I recommend this book to anyone who has experienced war, loss, and/or love.