|I’ve read several wonderful books recently, and my One Book I Love for today is Mare’s War (Knopf, 2009), by the fabulous Tanita Davis.
Two sisters, Octavia and Tali, are unwilling passengers on a road trip with their unconventional grandmother, Mare. Alternating (kind of) chapters intertwine the story of the road trip with Mare’s story of her life in the segregated South and in an African American battalion of the WAC during WWII.
I love the grandmother, who doesn’t take any guff from anybody, but who also isn’t the all-knowing, wise old woman. She’s human and, along with the rest of the family, makes her own mistakes. So do the two sisters, whose rocky relationship reminds me of my two daughters.
I did learn some history in the novel, but you can tell that’s not the point of it. This is no history lesson. It’s a real story of real people, and I learned as much about myself (as with any good novel) as I did about the characters or the period in history.
Yay, Tanita! I loved A La Carte (Knopf, 2008), and this novel is totally different but has the same essential heart and strength of that one.