The Four Winds by Kristin Hannah, 5 Stars

I’m not sure how she does it. How Kristin Hannah can basically take any moment in history and immediately make me feel like I am right there, living in it right also with the characters she has created to live through those moments. Every time! Have I ever read anything by Kristin Hannah that was bad? Nope.

Okay, this is when I become a crazed fan girl, when I just fall completely in love with pretty much anything an author writes. I’ve gone full gaga on many an author when I’ve met them – Augustan Burroughs, Ann Patchett, Ayelet Waldman. I think Kristin Hannah is safe for now. There aren’t many author events during a pandemic!

Still, The Great Alone was one of my favorite books about a year ago and now? The Four Winds for sure makes top 5 of 2020 for me. And it was a year where there wasn’t much else to do but read! That’s a pretty good track record!

From the Publisher:

Texas, 1934. Millions are out of work and a drought has broken the Great Plains. Farmers are fighting to keep their land and their livelihoods as the crops are failing, the water is drying up, and dust threatens to bury them all. One of the darkest periods of the Great Depression, the Dust Bowl era, has arrived with a vengeance.

In this uncertain and dangerous time, Elsa Martinelli—like so many of her neighbors—must make an agonizing choice: fight for the land she loves or go west, to California, in search of a better life. The Four Winds is an indelible portrait of America and the American Dream, as seen through the eyes of one indomitable woman whose courage and sacrifice will come to define a generation.

My Review:

Have you ever read a book that is so well written and so all-encompassing that you feel terrible the whole time you read it? Because the worst stuff is happening in the book and there’s no hope and it’s just awful. But also so good that you can’t put it down? And things just keep getting worse and worse. So you keep reading because you can’t look away and it feels awful. Then, when you finish, you wish you could read the whole thing over again for the first time?

That’s The Four Winds. Elsa is dealing with a lot. And basically nothing good happens. First she’s an old maid, there’s the Dust Bowl, during The Great Depression. Then trouble with her marriage. I can’t say much, but it is so hard for Elsa to catch a break. It is painful. But in the best possible way.

The Four Winds is a richly drawn work of historical fiction that transports the reader to that moment in history. Hannah does this in a way not many authors can master and it’s breathtaking. Special thanks to Netgalley and St. Martin’s Press for an advanced e-galley in exchange for my honest review.

The Four Winds is out February 2 and it is a MUST read. Pre-order your copy.

Indiebound

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