Genre: Adult, Historical Fiction
Source: I received a copy to facilitate my review. The opinions expressed here are my own.
The story takes place in the late sixties. Hilly Grunier has been in love with Danny Boyd since she was a kid telling scary stories on summer nights at the fire hydrant while Danny pulled lcose on his bike. But when Danny is thirteen, their friendship ends when he and his brother Sukey have a vicious fight over Hilly. Years pass, and Hilly carries a secret and growing love as she watches Danny rise athletically to the top of their school's food chain. He even dates the prom queen and rumor says they are engaged. Now Danny has graduated and shows up in her dad's shop looking for some temporary employment until the army picks him off for Vietnam. He's thrown aside his college scholarship and the golden girl. He seems to be searching for something new before he leaves town. he seems to be searching for her. Hilly can't let him go overseas without showing him how she feels. But once he's gone, her own battle intensifies. It's a long road to finding her thunder.
I really enjoyed this book. Hilly Grunier plods along in life with an alcoholic, abusive father who doesn't really seem to know she exists, and with a mother who is mentally ill. She is and has been in love with Danny Boyd for years. Danny is good for Hilly. With him she learns to be stronger than what she thought she was. She learns her family's secrets and decides to let them make her into a better person. The author did a wonderful job of creating the time period and the characters. You feel the tension of the time with all the racial tension, the Vietnam War, the hippies and free love. She gives you characters that are so well drawn that you can't help but hate some of them. Hilly's father was a real piece of work. I hated him from the beginning. I understood part of what shaped him, yet I could not forget the way he let his hatred of her mother and Naomi cloud his opinion of Hilly. I think I realized how strong my feelings were when he tried to get to move out of the house. This author has a way of weaving the feeling through the writing that makes it almost poetic. I will be reading and reviewing her book Me and Mom Fall For Spencer in a week and now that I've read this one I can't wait to start on it.
About the Author:
Diane Munier was raised as a midwestern urban kid. She spent a lot of time nosing around in the many establishments that filled the neighborhood. Love of story grew as she sat in various places--pews, restaurant chairs, barstools, and listened to the story-tellers, the keepers of the tales that patched us together. Lots of colors in the neighborhood quilt, lots of threads and shapes and patterns. It was all music ad she wondered how to capture what she was feeling; she wondered how to share it. Diane wanted a voice and to take her place in the quilt. She's currently learning to stitch some small part of it together.