The story continues as winter turns to spring and the Mahoney family faces situations at once heartbreaking and heartwarming. Not yet halfway through Liam’s year-long deployment, Emilie keeps a close eye on news from the Middle East as she attempts to maintain a sense of normalcy for everyone around her. She tries—but doesn’t always succeed—to be both mother and father to Finn and Rory, who must deal with the usual pressures of high school while worrying about their dad’s safety in a war zone.
Meanwhile, Fakhir becomes part of the family, providing comic relief with his language mishaps but still unable to open up about the past he left behind in Baghdad. The family welcomes Lucia into the fold, a would-be high-school dropout whose saucy exterior belies a new-found determination to do whatever it takes to keep her life on track.
Wade carries on the fight to save his marriage to Isabel, all while battling his personal demons and navigating a system ill-prepared to care for its veterans. The quirky and vivacious Aunt Dottie enters the scene with her leisure-suit-wearing boyfriend Joey, a Vietnam veteran devoted to Dottie and her tyrannical Jack Russell Terrier, Jacques.
Set against the backdrop of the Iraq war in the year 2008, Since You Went Away portrays in intimate detail the effects of a distant war on the families and returning veterans at home. With an undercurrent of suspense, it is a fly-on-the-wall account of the innermost workings of a military family—their fears and hopes, their struggles and disappointments, their unexpected moments of joy and comfort and laughter.
This is Part Two of a novel that will be released in four parts.
CO M I N G S O O N: Part Three: Summer