The Great Alone

The Great Alone

Book - 2018
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Ernt Allbright, a former POW, comes home from the Vietnam war a changed and volatile man. When he loses yet another job, he makes an impulsive decision: he will move his family north, to Alaska, where they will live off the grid in America's last true frontier. Thirteen-year-old Leni, a girl coming of age in a tumultuous time, caught in the riptide of her parents' passionate, stormy relationship, dares to hope that a new land will lead to a better future for her family. She is desperate for a place to belong. Her mother, Cora, will do anything and go anywhere for the man she loves, even if means following him into the unknown. At first, Alaska seems to be the answer to their prayers. In a wild, remote corner of the state, they find a fiercely independent community of strong men and even stronger women. The long, sunlit days and the generosity of the locals make up for the Allbrights' lack of preparation and dwindling resources. But as winter approaches and darkness descends on Alaska, Ernt's fragile mental state deteriorates and the family begins to fracture. Soon the perils outside pale in comparison to threats from within. In their small cabin, covered in snow, blanketed in eighteen hours of night, Leni and her mother learn the terrible truth: they are on their own. In the wild, there is no one to save them but themselves.
Publisher: New York : St. Martin's Press, 2018.
Edition: First U.S. edition.
ISBN: 9780312577230
Branch Call Number: HAN
Characteristics: 440 pages ; 25 cm

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JenniferG_OshLib May 23, 2018

This book made me cry no less than three times. That rarely happens. It’s interesting, too, as there was a point I wasn’t sure I wanted to continue reading it. It’s possible the topic was a bit difficult for me in that it was realistic and not part of a thriller or murder mystery, where I might expect it. Ernt did frustrate me to no end, and I couldn’t figure out why his family put up with him for so long, but I realized they didn’t have much of a choice, and really, neither did he.

The writing is honest and straightforward, and the author truly makes you fall in love with the Alaska wilds. I loved Leni’s character and how strong and realistic she was. There was a scene at the end that almost changed my opinion as it was rather trite, but the moments prior to it were enough for me to let it go. Overall, this book surprised me, and I would recommend it to anyone who enjoyed “All the Light We Cannot See” or “The Alice Network.”

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weezie1
May 10, 2018

One of the best books I have read. The story line and characters were great. Living in Alaska will bring out the best in you or the worst in you. It is a great life and full of love for family & friends. I could not put this book down and the ending will keep yu on your toes. Happy Reading!!!!

a
annphi
May 06, 2018

The premise was a familiar theme if one has read The Glass Castle. A good read, a bit of a departure from Kristin Hanna's previous works but enjoyable. It would be difficult for any of her future novels to captivate the reading world as The Nightingale continues to do so,finding new readers and praise.

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Bookskh
May 02, 2018

This book was so good I hated for it to end!!! It was so descriptive of Alaska that I felt like I was really there!! I have always liked Kristin’s books but after this one, I am going to make sure I read every one of hers!!!

johnston54 Apr 30, 2018

Enjoyed the characters in this book, and the visual descriptions of Alaska.

AL_MARYA Apr 25, 2018

The Great Alone will hook you with its compelling contemporary family drama, but its atmospheric prose will reel you in and hold you spellbound.

l
laphampeak
Apr 23, 2018

Hannah has a way of drawing the reader into the characters as they change and grow with and because of circumstance. The setting in remote backwoods Alaska was an interesting backdrop to a once wandering family composed of a damaged, ex-vet, wife-beating husband, a wife stuck in the codependent love of him, and a daughter who fast learned the way of the land as well as having to grow up fast. Combine this family with their new community members, shake things up, and you have a great mix for a story that you won't put down.

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pishposh9
Apr 21, 2018

I loved The Nightingale, but this repetitious tale was a trifle boring. I skimmed through a lot and was glad when it ended.

lauz32 Apr 17, 2018

This was a fantastic read! I have always enjoy Kristin Hannah's books, and this one was no exception. She really described the harsh realities of living off the land in Alaska, "a place where people go to escape from the real world". A great novel of resiliency, bravery with a little bit of a love story thrown into the mix. Trigger warning for domestic violence.

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Marcley
Apr 15, 2018

I really loved this book!!! Kristen Hannah did an excellent job researching Alaska and the time period this story is set in. The detailed descriptions of the Alaska landscape & beauty is remarkable. I have been to Alaska and it is truly magnificent.
We see the main character grow from a 13-year old girl into a young woman, who has endured and survived many difficult and tragic experiences. This book tackles the subjects of PTSD (after Vietnam) and also Domestic Abuse. The Mother-Daughter bond is amazing and I cried a few times, thinking of my daughter and myself. I could not put this book down, once I started reading it. Great story and so well written.

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AL_MARYA Mar 13, 2018

You know what they say about finding a man in Alaska—the odds are good, but the goods are odd.

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