Distant Signs

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 09 Oct 2019

Member Reviews

I found this difficult. The different vignettes were in themselves interesting, but following the overall arc of the story was a challenge.
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I had high hopes for this book as I can distinctly remember hearing on the news and hearing my parents talk about the Berlin Wall falling, but it just didn't draw me in.  I terrible at understanding how a book is written but I think this was written in 1st person and I always seem to have a hard time with that.  It seemed slow to me. I thought the writing was beautiful and very though provoking, so maybe this just wasn't the right time for me to be reading this book.  I remember so little about this time period that I thought learning about it through this book would be interesting, but unfortunately not at this time.  For the fact that it was beautifully written I see that this is a good book, just not right for me.
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This exquisite novel is a depiction of two families covering three generations amidst tempestuous political change. Margret and Hans, the middle generation and the main characters, struggle to contend with their different backgrounds, and the emotional scars they bear from childhood in the aftermath of WWII. Many segments of the narrative are full of tension, historical restrictions, and family misunderstandings. The plot covers aspects of WWII, the German Democratic Republic and the fall of the Berlin Wall. The reading is somewhat slow. I give it 3 stars out of 5.
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A family saga an involving story that kept me turning the pages.A time in history Berlin when the wall fell .Two families heartache drama relationships so well written highly recommend.
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I enjoyed this look at three generations of a familiy and how they were effected by WWII. It was an entertaining read. I hope to read more from this author soon. 

I would like to thank netgalley and the publisher for providing me with a copy free of charge. This is my honest and unbiased opinion of it
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Very slow but beautifully written literary fiction that made no sense to me.
We follow Margret and Hans, their parents and later their children. There are hints we're in Germany, but really, this could have been anywhere. 
Each chapter moves the timeline up a few years, which made me miss events. Suddenly the couple has two children? Suddenly someone returns from hospital after trying to take their own life? Somehow the Iron Curtain disappeared and now the daughter lives in France?
We basically get to know the characters through their surroundings. Ordinary people living ordinary lives in a supposedly extraordinary time, but it doesn't feel extraordinary at all. The only overlap in my experience with the Eastern European system is the gloom that spreads its grey blanket over everything. There's not much joy in this book. I'm not sure what story I was supposed to read, but to me this was just a sum of life in general. 

Thank you Netgalley and Neem Tree Press for the ARC.
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