I am so late in reviewing this book!!! It was so good. I feel like this would be a hard one to not love. Going to share what I thought but I don’t want to give away anything about the storyline because I think you guys should still read it if you haven’t – so forgive me for being vague! But I want to hear what you guys thought too so leave comments and feel free to be detailed .. a warning to those who want to read it not to read comments 😉

This is a fictional novel based in France during the German invasion — it is so well written that you can see yourself in every scene .. walking down the street, picturing every facial expression and feeling all the emotions. I realize it was (mostly) fiction (not sure that is made clear or not?), but I know there are true stories that aren’t far off from this exact one. I couldn’t help but think what an empowering book it is for women to remember the lives of those women who were so incredibly brave. In the beginning she says “If I have learned anything in this long life of mine, it is this: In love we find out who we want to be; in war we find out who we are.” .. and I kept wondering who I would be. The women in this book are so fearless it gives me chills. I love how Isabelle said “they can hurt my body but they can’t hurt my soul”… even to have that mentality during everything that was going on is just incredible. I loved her character.

April's Book of the Month

I am not going to lie, after finishing it I had a few days with waves of sadness.. I just felt sad. Knowing all of that horrible stuff happened just gives you a pit in the stomach. And remember that day that I said I was feeling so overwhelmed? I think a part of it was because we as a society have it so easy in comparison that it made me feel sick and ungrateful that I ever get stressed or annoyed about anything. I know you can’t compare but just reminded me not to take this freedom we have for granted, because we are so fortunate to have that. Definitely ended this book in tears and feeling so grateful for all of the soldiers who fight for our freedoms.

April’s book I am late to announcing of course ha, but I have started to read The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle. I wanted to start it to make sure I love it before I suggest it.. but I love it! I am listening on audible and his voice is kind of quiet and lacks energy so I do have to listen very intently but I get so captivated in what he is saying – sometimes I have to turn it off just to think about it for a minute because I don’t want to forget. I am not too far in but already think about the things he talks about in my daily life. It has already made me feel like I can control my feelings and thoughts more.. like I have more power over both. I can’t wait to keep listening so if you want to as well PLEASE DO!

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  1. I totally agree with you!! It was sooo sad but empowering and I felt grateful that yes, I’ve had hardships in my life but we’ve never really had to experience wartime issues at home at least.

  2. GREAT recommendation Amber!!!! I’ve already passed it along to four other people…seriously a soul touching book, knowing it was real, that that is what war was like 😬😫 I cried so much!! And the end…….the WHOLE book I was convinced that old lady was Isabelle………imagine my jaw dropping shocker when Vianne stood up to speak at that convention! I had to spend hours in the 🛀 to recover after finishing this book.. 💖💖💖

    I’ve began reading All The Light We Cannot See!!!!

    …same time frame, same country… Not finished yet, but I recommend to anyone who enjoyed The Nightingale!

    Thanks again Amber!!!! And LOOOVE and Soo excited for y’all on the house progression!!! Yayayyy🎉

  3. So after this was posted, I remembered that I had been wanting to read this book, so I jumped on Amazon and two days later it was at my door. From that moment on, I could not put the book down. Like you said, Amber, I could see myself in every scene. I finished the book last night with a full on grab-me-the-Kleenex-here-come-the-water-works bawling session and I still feel myself overwhelmed by the emotions brought on by that. I think the author does such a great job of bringing life to the stories of so many strong women in such a devastating time and because all these acts of bravery and moments of darkness are summed up in the two sisters, the emotions are highly concentrated and that hits hard. There was so much life in this book and I still have such a vivid image of it all in my head. It all makes this book so impact.

    Thanks for the recommendation!

  4. THE BEST BOOK EVER!!!!!!! Soooo captivating and so exquisitely written! You really get attached to the characters in this book. Also, I gained so much appreciation for the people who fought for human life and freedom in past wars and in present wars. This book will gnaw at your heart strings, make you sad, make you happy, and give you hope and a dose of gratitude for life. I is a true testament to the quality of pure love. Thanks so much for recommending this book!

  5. Hi Amber,
    I couldn‘t stop reading the book and am sad about that it has to end! Thank you so much, without you I wouldn‘t know the book.
    Tonight I watched the movie „Charlotte Gray“ with Cate Blanchett. After reading the book I can highly recommend the movie. Many scences reminds me of the book. Maybe you like to see it, too.
    Best wishes, Jasmin

  6. I absolutely love this book. I have passed it around to all my family and friends. It truely does make you do some soul searching and realize what kind of person would you might have been during that time? And even today we are faced with challenges that can really test our true character. I’m so happy to see this book on here! Definitely one on my top 5 favorite books! Thanks for sharing!

  7. I loved this book so much. I loved it from page one! I was so excited when you said you were going to add it to your club, I had just finished it when you decided to read!!! I love the characters. I agree I felt awful. And small spoiler alert.. I didn’t think the character who she was at the end until the very end.. which made the book EVEN better! Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

  8. You have to read Magic Hour by Kristin Hannah. It was amazing. I couldn’t put it down.

  9. Oh this book is one of my favs!! And I read it when I was 16! Literally changed my view on life!

  10. I Love Love Love this novel! One of my favorite and had me in tears for days!!

  11. I read this book for an essay in school, which can be dreading, but I ended up actually loving it!!! It was so detailed and has a great plot! I loved the scenery that I would picture in my head in France and the braveness of Vianne and Isabelle! I think that everybody should read it as it teaches very powerful lessons about life!!!

  12. I loved the Nightingale! Was the first time in a long time that I read a fiction book. But I really liked it and I also felt sad when it was over! It made me feel for the characters and it was hard not to tell others about it and how sad I felt.

  13. This book has been a favorite so much so that i read it in 48 hrs. Thank God for Shabbat! Being that my grandfather was a holocaust survivor I always have a hard time reading about the stories since it mostly leaves me with so much sadness. But this one was a true winner, instead of leaving me with the pain i was inspired by her and her bravery.

  14. Kristen Hannah is one of my favourite authors! I read this one a little while back and then immediately after started reading her other books. Summer Island is also a great read!
    I just read the best book of my life and I don’t think anything will ever compare. It’s long but worth every minute I spent with it. It’s called “A Little Life” by Hanya Yanagihara and has hit me harder than anything else. There’s nothing like fantastic writing.

  15. Where you mention what kind of woman you would be in the war…I challenge us all to consider what kind of women can we be NOW? I have been having some discomfort regarding bloggers lately (I follow a few major ones) and all I rutinely see are bags that are worth more than my monthly income, these houses being built that could house a city, extravagant trips, and free “blogger gifts” daily. Don’t get me wrong- I love seeing the fashion and the home decor and the travel tips but I wish there was also a significant amount of giving. We as a society have so many people in need and so many causes worth fighting for and I am just really disappointed that people who have the platform and following don’t use it to spread any amount of charity or fundraising or volunteerism. Just some thoughts on my mind that this discussion sparked….

    1. This is a serious question I have.. do you really WANT to see bloggers talking about how much money they donate or what they do to help others? I have always been taught to serve quietly. And I would never do a post telling everybody how much money I just donated or how I helped a family in need or whatever it might be. My point in this: maybe these bloggers ARE helping .. and it’s definitely not right to assume they AREN’T just because you don’t see them post it on social media. Xo

      1. I actually would LOVE that! I don’t think it would come across as bragging or flaunting your charity, but instead possibly inspire others to give back as well. You can help lead by example! 🙂

      2. Amber, I’m inclined to agree with you–to me, it says “Look at me!” when one shares the exact details of their charity and giving. It’s like when someone posts on Facebook when they do something nice for someone else; it’s wonderful that they did it, but you’re not supposed to do things for others so that you can be recognized, and it always makes me a little itchy when people share things when they’re obviously seeking praise. Does that make sense? Maybe folks would appreciate a roundup of causes you believe in, or something? I don’t know. I just wanted to let you know that I’m with you, and I don’t doubt for a minute that y’all give tremendously. Also, ohhhh the Nightingale. One of my favorites, and one I’ll re-read.

      3. Britt— I think this is such a great sentiment and a great question to raise. It’s something I often consider as I enter the world of blogging.

        As to Amber’s point, I agree that there is a fine line to walk when it comes to your service. On one hand, you don’t want to exploit the charity or those in need by making posts that are me-centric. However, I think something like posts highlighting causes that you are passionate about and ways you are involved (and ways your readers can help) or hosting charity events and creating products that give back (see Ben Higgins and his Humanity & Hope missions and his Generous Coffee) would be really well received!

  16. This was my favorite book I read in all of 2017. Absolutely loved it — everyone needs to read it. I loved that it told a story/side of the war that we don’t always reflect on — what is going on back home.

  17. Hi Amber! First off, I love you. You’re my absolute favorite blogger in the whole wide world. I talk about you like we are friends! HAHA! Hope that isn’t too creepy. Anyways, I LOVED the Nightingale. One my all time faves. Kristin Hannah just had a new book come out called The Great Alone. I would highly recommend reading it! It will give you all the feels! Sending all the love and best wishes your way!

  18. This was one of my favorite books too! I did end it feeling so sad though! I get so invested in books that I am reading that I feel super sad when reading books about the war thinking how hard that would be to live at that time! I loved the authors way of writing in this book though, it felt so real!

  19. I loved this book so much. I have a sister and it was so easy for me to see myself as Isabelle and my sister as Vianne. She was always the obedient and ever faithful one and I was always more of the rebel and free spirit. The fact that they characters were so relate-able and so well written made me love the book. Like you, I found myself wondering how much strength I could find if ever met with this situation – and I really hope I could make the kind of difference both of these sisters made! I’m sure there are so many untold true stories that mirror this fictional version – it makes me so appreciative of all the freedom and pure peace I have in my life! Great choice for a book club book!!! xo

  20. THIS WAS MY FAVORITE BOOK SO FAR. I could not put it down. I, too felt that it stuck with me even once I was finished reading. I had this urge once I finished the book to pay my respects to all the men, women and children who lost their lives during that time. My mama and I visited the Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust and it was so hard to learn more stories and see pictures of all the brave men, women and children who lost their lives but it was amazing to learn how people stepped up to help even though it meant risking it all. We also learned about some of the survivors and hearing their memoires and what they went through during this horrific time was heartbreaking. I felt so inspired by their bravery. The book was just so beautifully written it really does make you open your eyes and be grateful for the small things that maybe taken for granted or overlooked in the day-to-day routines! I really hope you can get the book club together for the premiere of the movie that would be such an incredible adventure! Also, I’m so happy about this month’s book choice! I bought it a few months back and have not started reading it yet!

  21. Omg this book!! So so so good. I legit had to skip the part where they came to take Daniel, it was way too sad for me !! I can not get over how fragile life is and how this book really proved the point that no matter what nationality you are, we as a global community have so much more in common than we think (American pilots, British pilots, Beck, the French) and I just think that’s so important for everyone to recognize. Also, not to get too political…I think we as a global community really need to reflect on how diversity was used during WWII to insight fear and hatred of groups of people who were “different” and really take a second to evaluate how we as a Western society treat refugees, or Muslims, etc.

    Sorry- soapbox over lol LOVED this book!!

  22. One of my very favorite books! I agree that it makes you think about who you would be in that situation. I’m pretty confident I’d be Isabelle because I tend to be pretty rebellious, but I think there’s a really underrated strength about Vianne as well.

    briana | youngsophisticate.com

  23. Absolutely LOVED The Nightingale. I, too, was in tears when I finished it. And at many points along the way, for sure. Was I the only one who didn’t realize who the narrator at the beginning of the book was, until the very end?

    1. I didn’t know who it was either! I figured it was either Vianne or Isabelle but didn’t know til the end either!

    2. Yes, I was not expecting that! For some reason I thought it was Isabelle the whole time. It was a good plot twist for sure!

    1. I’ve heard women in the castle is so good!!! I’ll have to read it! Xoxoxo

  24. Loved this book so much! And yes, I totally agree! I loved her character and I felt like I knew what she was feeling/thinking throughout the book. At times I felt certain emotions based on her character which made me feel so invested in it. So eye-opening and sad but I also didn’t want it to end!