Received: Received a copy from Sourcebooks in exchange for an honest reviewRelease Date: April 1, 2013
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Decades ago, as Nazi planes dominated the British sky, eighteen-year-old Lily Verner made a terrible mistake. She’s tried for decades to forget, but now an unexpected event pulls her back to the 1940s British countryside. She finds herself remembering the brilliant, lustrous colors of the silk she helped to weave at her family’s mill, the relentless pressure of the worsening war, and the kind of heartbreaking loss that stops time.
In this evocative novel of love and consequences, Lily finally confronts the disastrous decision that has haunted her all these years.
This book was such a beautiful love story, I always say on my blog how I used to love chick lit and love stories before reviewing books, and I always love coming back to those once in awhile. Liz Trenow takes readers back to the time of WWII and you are taken into the lives of the Verner family. The family owns a silk factory, that has been in their name for generations, and they learn to stay afloat by making parachutes to help the war effort.
I loved how Liz Trenow placed this story during such a hard time for people, and the love story that she added in was such an amazing part to this story. This book is about so much more than a romance though, this is about Lily's growth over the years and the secrets she struggles with for so long. I loved Lily's character, she learned a lot about herself during hard times and she really grew over time. There are a lot of hardships that Lily must overcome to become stronger, but there are definitely a great cast of characters that help her through things.
The secondary characters were very important to Lily's story as well. Some of them stood in her way of success while others were always behind her helping her achieve what needed to be done. I find in more books, the secondary characters are just there without any real purpose but in THE LAST TELEGRAM, every person had their purpose to the story. Gwen was one of my favourites, she had her own secrets, but she was the one that really gave Lily her strength when she hit bottom. This is a character that I want with me when I'm in a crappy mood, she knows when to let you talk and when to just sit there in silence. Gwen was one of the strongest people and I absolutely loved her from the beginning.
I really enjoyed how this story was told, readers begin years after the event, following the death of Lily's husband and she begins to reflect on a past mistake that has haunted her for years, and we begin to learn her story and the secret that she has kept with her for so long. The harsh reality of what happened to Lily all comes together when she finally opens up and it is such an emotional journey that Lily must take. This book is really about learning to forgive yourself and showing how secrets can affect your life.
I also have to add how much fun it was learning about silk weaving in this book, in the back of the book there is an added section and Liz Trenow talks about the research that she put into this book, and that though the characters were not real, this is still very loosely based on some interesting facts (that interestingly came from Liz's family tree).