From the award-winning, much loved writer: a deeply moving novel about an American woman’s place during the Spanish Civil War, the lessons she took from it, and how her story will shape her granddaughter’s path.
Marian cut herself off from her conservative, wealthy Irish Catholic family when she volunteered during the Spanish Civil War—experiences she has always kept to herself. Now in her nineties, she shares her Rhode Island cottage with her granddaughter Amelia, a young woman of good heart but only a vague notion of life’s purpose. As the narrative unfolds, their daily existence is intertwined with Marian’s secret past—the blow to her youthful idealism when she witnessed the brutalities on both sides of Franco’s war, and the romance that left her adrift in Spain with yet another family who misunderstood her. When Marian is diagnosed with cancer, she speaks at last about what happened to her in Spain—which compels Amelia to journey to Spain herself, to reconcile Marian’s past with her own uncertain future. With the exquisite female bond at its core, this novel of how character is forged in a particular moment in history and passed down through the generations will linger long with its readers.