From the New York Times bestselling author of The Giver of Stars, a sweeping bestseller of love and loss, deftly weaving two journeys from World War I France to present day London.
Paris, World War I. Sophie Lefèvre must keep her family safe while her adored husband, Édouard, fights at the front. When their town falls to the Germans, Sophie is forced to serve them every evening at her hotel. From the moment the new Kommandant sets eyes on Sophie’s portrait—painted by her artist husband—a dangerous obsession is born.
Almost a century later in London, Sophie’s portrait hangs in the home of Liv Halston, a wedding gift from her young husband before his sudden death. After a chance encounter reveals the portrait’s true worth, a battle begins over its troubled history and Liv’s world is turned upside all over again.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Jojo Moyes is the queen of heartache—in the best possible way. This time-shifting romance tells the emotional stories of two resilient women living generations apart. We begin in World War I with Sophie Lefèvre, a striking Frenchwoman who unwittingly becomes the object of a menacing German officer’s obsession after he sees a painting of her created by her husband, who’s far away on the battlefield. In present-day London, that same portrait ends up in the hands of Liv Halston, a young widow struggling to keep everything together after her husband’s sudden death. Moyes connects her heroines’ stories not only through this piece of art, but also through their shared experiences with love and loss. Sophie’s harrowing wartime journey is balanced by her enduring (and hot!) romance with her husband. Meanwhile, Moyes’ choice to explore Liv’s mourning through her infatuation with Sophie’s painting makes for particularly captivating reading. Even when all seems lost for Moyes’ characters, their against-all-odds hope makes The Girl You Left Behind very cathartic.
Moyes's enchanting latest (after Me Before You) entwines two love stories set 90 years apart, connected by a painting called The Girl You Left Behind. In 1916, 22-year-old Sophie Lef vre struggles against a new German commandant in her occupied village in northern France. Trying to keep her family safe and their restaurant open while her and her sister's husbands are away, Sophie makes greater and greater sacrifices as her living conditions grow more spartan. But when things reach their lowest, she must decide whether to gamble everything on the German commandant's powerful fascination with her husband's portrait of her. Jumping ahead to London in 2006, the story turns to 32-year-old Liv Halston, whose architect husband David bought Sophie's painting for Liv shortly before he died in an accident. Still deep in the throes of grief four years after his death, Liv now faces eviction from the beautiful, heavily taxed house he built. But an unlikely reunion with a former classmate and the unexpected entrance of a new man, Paul, into Liv's life make her feel better than she has since David died until a restitution company tries to claim The Girl You Left Behind. An unfortunate coincidence twists the knife deeper, and Liv is forced to fight tooth and nail for what she has come to love most in the world. Lovely and wry, Moyes's newest is captivating and bittersweet.
The Girl You Left Behind
Another fabulous book by Jojo Moyes. I always look forward to her latest books and this one did not disappoint. Can't wait for the next one!