'The Nightingale' sells well, receives critical praise

Kristin Hannah's 'Nightingale' follows two sisters living in World War II-era France.

'The Nightingale' is by Kristin Hannah.

The novel “The Nightingale” by Kristin Hannah is selling well and receiving some positive reviews. 

“Nightingale,” which was released earlier this month, follows two French sisters, Vianne and Isabelle, living during World War II. After Vianne’s husband leaves for combat, the Germans take up residence in Vianne’s home. Meanwhile, Isabelle falls in love but, once she is betrayed by her paramour, decides to become part of the Resistance. 

The book ranked at number five on the IndieBound hardcover fiction bestseller list for the week of Feb. 19 and it’s at number five on the New York Times hardcover fiction bestseller list for the week of March 1.

Amazon selected the novel as one of the best books to be released this month and Amazon editorial director Sara Nelson predicted it would be a novel the public would be hearing a lot about. “This is going to be a huge book,” she said. 

Barnes & Noble staff called the book “penetrating,” while Library Journal writer Julia M. Reffner of Midlothian, Va. called the book “full of emotion and heart.” 

Meanwhile, Shelf Awareness writer Jaclyn Fulwood wrote that Hannah “delves unflinchingly into a time and place when the world was at war…. With her instinct for capturing family dynamics and female relationships, Hannah offers her fans everything they've come to love and expect in her writing. She shows how war creates circumstances that bring out the best and the worst in humanity. Spanning the entire war, Hannah's epic is an emotional powerhouse that lays bare the human heart's capacity for courage, compassion and resilience.”

Kirkus Reviews staff found that “[Hannah’s] tendency to sentimentalize undermines the gravitas of this tale” but noted that Vianne’s story is “no less wrenching” than her sister’s and that the book is “vivid…. a respectful and absorbing page-turner.”

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.
Real news can be honest, hopeful, credible, constructive.
What is the Monitor difference? Tackling the tough headlines – with humanity. Listening to sources – with respect. Seeing the story that others are missing by reporting what so often gets overlooked: the values that connect us. That’s Monitor reporting – news that changes how you see the world.

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to CSMonitor.com.

QR Code to 'The Nightingale' sells well, receives critical praise
Read this article in
QR Code to Subscription page
Start your subscription today