Thursday, 13 May 2010

White Picket Fences by Susan Meissner

The Janvier family has it all, a comfortable marriage, a lovely home, two seemingly well adjusted teens, even a white picket fence...or so it seems. When Amanda Janvier's niece is abandoned by her nomadic father, the Janviers welcome Tally into their home believing they can provide her with the stable environment she has missed all her life.

He was fairly certain he could trust Tally. She had secrets too.

Seventeen year old Chase Janvier is intrigued by his cousin and her unusual life but troubled by his own. As he and Tally share a school project interviewing two Holocaust survivors, Chase realises he may have finally found someone he can confide in about his troubling dreams and disturbing memories of a house fire from his childhood.

And life was easier pretending that something didn't exist, especially if that something could send your world spinning off its axis.

Amanda Janvier knows her marriage is not what it seems but will she consider the unimaginable? Neil Janvier prefers to escape to his woodworking than face his fear of his son's rejection. Will their perfect world shatter when the truth finally comes to light?

Poignant prose and understated characterisation are hallmarks of Susan Meissner's novels and White Picket Fences is no exception. A beautiful tale of a past tragedy that remains unacknowledged, giving it a power the Janvier family cannot see. Tapping into the heart of a family struggling to realise the depth of pain they are hiding from each other, this is a moving and thought provoking story that reveals Susan's sublime talent. As in The Shape of Mercy, Susan weaves historical fact into her contemporary story as two elderly Holocaust survivors share their part in smuggling Jewish babies out of the Warsaw ghetto in the 1940s. White Picket Fences will pull at your heart strings as Amanda, Neil, Chase and Tally discover that the truth really can set you free.

As seen at ~ with thanks to TitleTrakk for my review copy

Relz Reviewz Extras

Review of The Shape of Mercy

Interview with Susan

Visit Susan's website and always insightful blog

Buy Susan's books at Amazon or Koorong


Amber Holcomb said...

I haven't read White Picket Fences, but I loved The Shape of Mercy. Thanks for sharing your review! :)


Anonymous said...

I temporarily stopped reading Sarah's Key because the Holocaust content was so difficult to absorb and picked up White Picket Fences. Well, unbeknownst to me, White Picket Fences included a Holocaust story, too. I finished it in record time and then went back to Sarah's Key realizing I was obviously meant to immerse myself in some historical reality that week...
White Picket Fences has everything: secrets, history, romance, and an amazingly clever way of tying it all together.
Definitely a book I will read again :)

Ann Shorey said...

Sounds like a fantastic story. I loved The Shape of Mercy!

Tracy said...

I love Susan's books, so I'm sure this one will happily join her other works on my shelf....after I've indulged myself with reading it, of course. Sounds like an intriguing story.

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