Coming Closer by Karen Heenan
This week on the blog, I’m reviewing Coming Closer by Karen Heenan. This is the second novel in her Depression era historical fiction series. I absolutely loved this book! You can find my review below, but first here’s the blurb to give you a glimpse:
Coming Closer – the Blurb
It’s hard to leave the past behind
Recently widowed Ava has moved to Philadelphia, determined to start over. With her children and blossoming career as a dressmaker taking up all her time, she’s not ready for charming, persistent Max Byrne, even if he is a family friend and her daughter’s doctor. But he shows up at every turn, making it impossible for Ava to ignore him – and worse yet, she’s not sure she wants to.
Claire is torn between pride in her sister’s self- reliance and finding a way to pay back the debt she owes her. When an unexpected meeting in Washington DC gives Claire the chance to make change on an even larger scale, she jumps at the opportunity – abandoning her family duties in pursuit of good works.
The sisters find themselves on opposite sides: while Claire neglects her family for greater causes, Ava considers sacrificing everything for hers. As they confront their pasts and take on new challenges, will they be able to overcome their differences and remember that family always comes first?
This novel continues the story of the two sisters, Ava and Claire. The book seamlessly switches between the two protagonists as they navigate life in the Depression-era 1930s. Despite Ava’s grief, she has found some contentment in independence. However, when she continues to meet Dr Max Byrne, she considers sacrificing this for the sake of her family.
Claire does the opposite – although she loves her family, she longs for a purpose outside the home. When she finds a worthy cause, she devotes her heart and soul to it, at the cost of her family. Can Claire fulfil her vision and calling while still prioritising those she loves?
Like the first book in the series, this is an exceptionally well written, immersive story. Right from the first line, I’m transported to 1930s Philadelphia. The pacing moves brilliantly as both sisters must overcome obstacles and there are plenty of twists and turns.
One of the strongest points of the novel is following the conflict of Ava’s friendship with Max while still grieving her first husband and the pull he still has on her heart. Ultimately the novel is about the sisters coming closer to each other, but also about accepting who they are and the feelings they have. Without spoiling anything, I particularly loved the ending for this.
Check out Coming Closer
I highly recommend this series – book 3 has just been published, so I’ll definitely be grabbing that! (Heenan’s Tudor series is also brilliant, I recommend checking those out too). You can find Coming Closer on Amazon below:
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Till next time,