A WWII story unlike any other I've come across. It follows the lives of three characters -- James, a fighter pilot shot down on his first mission, his wife Rose, and his sister Enid. We see, through each of their lives, the disruptive force of war as it plays out over decades. One of the best books I've read in recent years.— Kathy
"The Evening Chorus serenades people brutally marked by war, yet enduring to live -- and relish -- the tiny pleasures of another day. With her trademark prose -- exquisitely limpid -- Humphreys convinces us of the birdlike strength of the powerless." -- Emma Donoghue
Downed during his first mission, James Hunter is taken captive as a German POW. To bide the time, he studies a nest of redstarts at the edge of camp. Some prisoners plot escape; some are shot. And then, one day, James is called to the Kommandant's office.
Meanwhile, back home, James's new wife, Rose, is on her own, free in a way she has never known. Then, James's sister, Enid, loses everything during the Blitz and must seek shelter with Rose. In a cottage near Ashdown forest, the two women jealously guard secrets, but form a surprising friendship. Each of these characters will find unexpected freedom amid war's privations and discover confinements that come with peace. The Evening Chorus is a beautiful, astonishing examination of love, loss, escape, and the ways in which the intrusions of the natural world can save us.
"The Evening Chorus sparkles." --Jo Baker
"A poised, lyrical novel about the griefs of war, written with poetic intensity of observation." --Helen Dunmore
"This riveting novel is a song. Listen." --Richard Bausch