Published by St. Martin's Press on February 6th 2018
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Alaska, 1974.Unpredictable. Unforgiving. Untamed.For a family in crisis, the ultimate test of survival.
Ernt Allbright, a former POW, comes home from the Vietnam war a changed and volatile man. When he loses yet another job, he makes an impulsive decision: he will move his family north, to Alaska, where they will live off the grid in America’s last true frontier.
Thirteen-year-old Leni, a girl coming of age in a tumultuous time, caught in the riptide of her parents’ passionate, stormy relationship, dares to hope that a new land will lead to a better future for her family. She is desperate for a place to belong. Her mother, Cora, will do anything and go anywhere for the man she loves, even if means following him into the unknown.
At first, Alaska seems to be the answer to their prayers. In a wild, remote corner of the state, they find a fiercely independent community of strong men and even stronger women. The long, sunlit days and the generosity of the locals make up for the Allbrights’ lack of preparation and dwindling resources.
But as winter approaches and darkness descends on Alaska, Ernt’s fragile mental state deteriorates and the family begins to fracture. Soon the perils outside pale in comparison to threats from within. In their small cabin, covered in snow, blanketed in eighteen hours of night, Leni and her mother learn the terrible truth: they are on their own. In the wild, there is no one to save them but themselves.
In this unforgettable portrait of human frailty and resilience, Kristin Hannah reveals the indomitable character of the modern American pioneer and the spirit of a vanishing Alaska―a place of incomparable beauty and danger. The Great Alone is a daring, beautiful, stay-up-all-night story about love and loss, the fight for survival, and the wildness that lives in both man and nature.
~~Reviewed by Shelly~~
Wow! What a thriller! Leni grows up in a totally dysfunctional family. She sees her dad beat her mom but she won’t leave. Dysfunction galore abounds. The family has relocated to a small town in Alaska. Toss in months of darkness and you know evil is going to rise. Leni finds unlikely friends in the cute boy from school, and friends throughout town. They protect Leni and have her and her mom’s back as a “mystery” unfolds. This is a thought-provoking story. How could this have been prevented? Why did no one do anything? Will Leni and her love survive? Will her mom survive? Will they stay in Alaska? You have to read it to get the answers. I do believe you will be surprised.