I got an ARC of this book via the First to Read program by Penguin Books. This is my most honest review.
I have loved this book by Hazel Woods, even though it started a bit slow and it took me some time to get into it. But once Hensley and Charles start sending letters to each other, the book improved quite a lot. Set in America during the First World War, this love story talks about fears, conventions, families, and romance. When Hensley Dench is forced to go to live to New Mexico with her father, leaving her sophisticated life as a teenager in New York behind, her life will suffer a complete change. However, she cannot leave everything in New York. The only thing that can keep her spirits high is getting letters from Charles, her father’s penpal friend, who has been playing chess via letters with him.
Charles enlists and goes to Europe to participate in the Great War. His life as a soldier is not an easy one. As an ambulance driver, Charles sees horrible things. While he tries to make some sense out of the chaos of the war, he looks forward to getting letters from Hensley, the only thing that can keep him alive. When the unexpected happens, things will get more complicated for the long-distance couple, who have never met before.
When there are secrets in any relationship, things cannot be easy, but love always finds a way. The ending of the story was quite predictable, and that’s why I am giving this book just four stars, but the writing was impeccable and this book is definitely a page-turner. Very interesting characters in general terms, although there are a couple of characters who are not very dimensional. However, it is a wonderful story of love and secrets that will keep you reading until the very end.