My rating: 5 of 5 stars
In the past year, I took a big interest in books written about WWII. And I am very happy to come upon this wonderful book.
We have 3 completely different characters that build the story of the book. French refugee Annelle LeMaire, Mabry Springs – American by birth and a wife of wealthy Brit, and another American – Reid Carr, a soldier in the past and a champagne seller in the present. And in May 1940 they all meet at Wickwythe Hall.
Annelle LeMaire and her 2 older brothers became orphans after a tragic death of their parents. They were taken in and raised by nuns in a convent. When LeMaire brothers became older, they joined the French and Spanish armies. Annelle was about to join a convent to become a nun when Germans have invaded the France. Desperate for freedom and to reunite with her brothers, Annalle leaves the convent and ends up in England. She is being noticed by Mabry, who takes a young refugee in and offers her a job and a roof over her head. Annelle never loses hope to reconnect with her Legionnaire brothers. And when she meets Reid, he gives her hope that one day she will reunite with her brothers.
All Mabry Springs wants is a happy marriage and a child. She left America for England, where she found a great suitor, Tony Springs. Years and 6 miscarriages later, Mabry finds herself in a troubled marriage and loses all the hope of ever becoming a mother. She turns her attention to war victims. Mabry is helping soldiers who are back from the war, takes in 23 kids from London and arranges their stay and comfort in Wickwythe Hall. Meeting Reid again makes her rethink her past choices, and find her true calling of becoming a mother.
Reid Carr, a seller of French champagne “Pol Roger”, is actually a mediator between President Roosevelt and Prime Minister Churchill. On Roosevelt’s request, Carr is heading to England where he makes negotiations between America and England. While at Wickwythe Hall, Reid meets Annelle, learns of her story and gives her a promise to find her long-lost brothers. Later, he is sent by Churchill to an attack on Mers-El-Kébir. After the attached, Reid discovers that Annelle’s brothers there on the ships that Brits have bombed. Instead of going back to England, Carr sets of to find LeMaire boys.
The story ends in June 1946. The war is over. But will each character get their happy ending?
A Beautiful story of friendship, love, and loyalty during a wartime.