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Winter Garden by Kristin Hannah

Winter Garden (2010)

by Kristin Hannah

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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2,0481224,813 (3.94)78
  1. 00
    Ugly Ways by Tina McElroy Ansa (akblanchard)
    akblanchard: Both books feature a mother who pays more attention to her garden than she does to her adult children.

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» See also 78 mentions

English (125)  Dutch (1)  All languages (126)
Showing 1-5 of 125 (next | show all)
I really got into the Russian story more than the contemporary one. I really didn't see the ending coming with Anya being alive. The author's descriptions of WWII Russia were pretty good. I haven't read any stories from that time and place so I found it very interesting. ( )
  eliorajoy | Dec 12, 2018 |
Read this as a Buddy Read on Litsy and enjoyed it very much! It is a powerful story of misunderstanding and family love between 2 daughters and their mother. There are a lot of historical reference to Russia during the war. Anya has told her daughters, Meredith and Nina, a fairytale which turns into a reality by the end of the book. It is a tearjerker that you won't be able to forget and one you should not miss! ( )
  EadieB | Dec 12, 2018 |
Meredith and her sister Nina grow up with a very involved and loving father and a distant, mysterious mother. They react to this upbringing in different ways. Nina, a photojournalist, flits around the world, never forming attachments or setting down roots. Meredith is extra-rooted, in the family business, devoted to her father and a very dedicated and nurturing mother to her two children. When their father, Evan, dies, his last wish is for their mother, Anya, to tell the girls a story.
Anya's story is of a young girl growing up in Stalinist Leningrad, and it is harrowing. When Nina and Meredith finally realize what it has to do with their family, the hope (and the point of the book) is to explain why Anya was such a cold and distant mother. Unfortunately, while it's all very fascinating, I find it a little implausible. Why would Evan stay with Anya and watch her parenting style without intervening or even explaining until after his death? I also don't find the result of Anya's tale explanatory of her behavior, but I guess everyone reacts differently to different situations.
That being said, however, I really couldn't put it down. I just had to get to the end and find out the answers and have the mystery revealed and all that, even though I'd guessed the 'twist' about halfway through. ( )
  Persislee | Dec 8, 2018 |
Winter Garden was selected as a local book club choice, and I found the book to be hauntingly beautiful! It's an emotional journey through the lives of 3 women, and their relationships with each other and other significant people. It's gut wrenching and poignant, but a beautiful story of hope and forgiveness. ( )
  NanceeM | Oct 25, 2018 |
Another novel by Kristin Hannah that I was really drawn into. There were a lot of layers to this story. There were many stories within stories.

When I first started this, I got pulled in by the imagery, and the idea of the winter garden itself. Of course I had no idea what the symbolism was until I reached the end of the novel, but it sounded pretty. At the same time, the characters themselves in the beginning were somewhat stiff and lost. They all seemed to be drifting, each in their own way.

Meredith was the one who, although she tried at all costs to keep everything together, to keep busy, to block her feelings out, was the most restless.

Similar to Night Road, there is the strong growth of the characters, and the redemption. Kristin Hannah seems to have become my more recent Jodi Picoult, because I want to read more and more of her novels and have only read two so far. The good thing is that these have somewhat less controversy in them, and, thus far, much less courtroom drama. ( )
  Melissalovesreading | Sep 30, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 125 (next | show all)
Resisting the urge to skip ahead so I could find out what happens was a serious problem with this novel. Even though there are a number of stories told in this novel; Meredith's struggles with her marriage, Nina's struggles with love and family, Anya's struggles with her past, and Veronika's story in Russia, everything flows so smoothly.

What starts out as a story of three struggling women turns into a beautiful story... one that literally brough tears to my eyes. I found that this book allowed me to laugh, cry, yell and hurt and a book that does that is a very powerful book.

Overall, this book needs to be read... it deserves a place on anyone's bookshelf! Well done Kristin Hannah, I will be reading many more of your books in the future!
For this reader, it doesn't work.
The Whitson family is rocked by the sudden death of patriarch Evan, a warm, loving man who doted on his two adult daughters, Meredith and Nina, and his reserved Russian wife, Anya. Meredith, who runs the family business, and Nina, a photojournalist whose job takes her to war zones around the world, have never been able to connect with their cold, forbidding mother. When Anya begins to act strangely, Meredith thinks she belongs in a nursing home, but Nina decides to try to fulfill her father's dying wish and get her mother to tell her and Meredith the elaborate fairy tales she used to share with them. Anya is initially reluctant, but once she begins, Nina realizes these tales are actually the story of Anya's life in Stalinist Leningrad. Meredith and Nina decide to attempt to uncover the truth about their mother's tragic past in the hope of understanding her, and themselves.
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Kristin Hannahprimary authorall editionscalculated
Ericksen, SusanNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Prologue: 1972
To my husband Benjamin: As Always. To my Mother: I wish I had listened to more of your light stories when I had the chance. To my dad and Debbie: Thanks for the trip of a lifetime and memories that will last even longer. And to my beloved Tucker: I am so proud of you; your journey is just beginning.
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On the banks of the mighty Columbia River, in this icy season, when every breath became visable, the orchard called Bele Nochi, was quiet. Dormant apple trees stretched as far as the eye could see.
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The dying wish of a loving father ignites a family drama that brings two sisters and their acid-tongued, Russian-born mother together in a story that reaches back to WWII Leningrad.

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