Shirley D. (Amherst, MA)
THE THINGS WE CHERISHED
Once I understood the sudden shifts in time, locale and characters, I was drawn into the personal pain of brothers and the women they loved and the pain of the Holocaust repeated in the present day struggle of two brothers and a woman, a survivor of the Holocaust herself. My heart ached again for the Holocaust victims as highlighted by Jenoff. Having lived in that era, I felt again the madness of those times, the old struggle of love and pain in wartime, everything loosely held together here by a clockmaker, the Nazis and an antique clock.. It is a novel of love in the horrors of war and in the sufferings of the men and women who lived it.
Harriette K. (Northbrook, IL)
The Things We Cherished
The story takes off from a pre-trial meeting of the protagonist and an elderly man who is accused of betraying his brother during the Holocaust. The brother had led a secret life rescuing Jews and sending them out of harm's way. Is he guilty or just the victim of his own innocence.
This is a good enough read, but doesn't offer us too much that's new in the way of a "Holocaust" story.
The most interesting part of this read is the conflict between brothers, different pairs at different times during from the early 20th century to the present. All in all, a good read, but not exceptional.
Jane N. (Little Egg Harbor, New Jersey)
The Things We Cherish
This is a story about the human cost of World War 11. It is a story as old as time. One brother falling in love with another brother’s wife, the other brother in love with mankind in general but can’t find time to show his love for his family. Jenoff tells the story by moving back and forth through time and does it beautifully. She uses the dynamics between brothers to move the story along. She goes back to the turn of the 20th century to create the setting that will eventually lead to the story’s conclusion. Her writing is clean and easy to follow. Jenoff demonstrates that things are not always what they appear to be, both in the past and in the future, and it is always foolish to jump to quick and easy conclusions based on appearances. This is a simple story told with tenderness and in the end, broke my heart. I enjoyed it.
Lucy B. (Urbana, Ohio)
Holocaust Hero's brother
I loved this story of love and suspense. There is a love connection not only between the public defender and the brother of her ex-lover but between the accused Nazi collaborator, who the public defender is asked to help defend, and the accused's brother's wife.
The book starts in 2009, jumps to 1903, 1922, 1940, 1942, 1961, and 1911, jumping into 2009 in and about the earlier years. I sometimes got confused as to where I was.
All in all, a lovely story.
Carolyn L. (Summerville, SC)
The Things We Cherished
I liked this book a lot, and will look for more by this author. I became involved in the story right away, and found it quite interesting. Chapters alternated between the past and the present, and it worked for me in this novel, providing an understanding of how, and perhaps why, certain things happened. I am drawn to books which have connections to the World War II era, and this one did not disappoint.
Elise B. (Macedonia, OH)
The Thigs We Cherished
The book, The Things We Cherished, is a combination of a modern day romance and historical fiction. It is the story of a man, Roger Dykmans, who is being accused of war crimes during World War II, and is refusing to assist his attorneys in providing a defense. The three attorneys involved in the case have an interesting love triangle between a woman and two brothers. This story is interwoven with various tales of historical fiction involving the clock and the various families that owned it - primarily throughout World War II. Each of the individual stories were quite engaging separately; however, the blending of the clock into people’s lives, leading into modern day, was very forced and not very plausible.
Deanna W. (Port Jefferson, NY)
Skip This One
Described as an ambitious novel that spans decades and continents...this book disappoints in every way. The plot is trite and predictable. I would not recommend this book.