Title: Mrs.Sinclair's Suitcase
Author: Louise Walters
Genre: Historical/Contemporary Women's Fiction
Length: 288 Pages
Part historical novel, part modern cautionary tale, MRS. SINCLAIR’S SUITCASE weaves the stories of stoic Dorothea, an unhappy World War II-era British housewife circa 1940, and her present day granddaughter Roberta, a lonely bookstore clerk whose life in 2010 is seemingly stalled. When Roberta stumbles upon an old letter inside her centenarian grandmother’s battered suitcase from Jan Pietrykowski, her grandfather, to her grandmother, Dorothy, she’s baffled by its contents. Dated the year after her grandfather supposedly died, it calls into question everything Roberta ever knew about her family history. As she digs into the mystery, Roberta uncovers a secret so momentous it sends shockwaves for generations to come. Who was Mrs. D. Sinclair, the name found labeled inside the old valise? What was her connection to Dorothea Pietrykowski? And why did Dorothea lie about the details of Jan Pietrykowski’s death? War looms large in Louise Walters’s story, delivering an utterly original account of love, betrayal, and family secrets, that lingers in memory long after the final page is turned.
There are very few books that absolutely should not be read on an e-reader. Mrs. Sinclair's Suitcase is one of those rare exceptions. With lines like "Books smell, they creak, they talk. You hold in your hand now a living, breathing, whispering thing, a book." you can't read it on an electronic device without feeling cheap and dirty. I love my Kindle, but in this instance, am so glad I had a hardback in my hands.
That line really stuck with me. It's beautiful and so very true. This is a beautifully written, engaging story of love, loss, family, and life. There are two stories woven together perfectly in this book. My husband and I are on year six of infertility, so on a very personal level, I completely related to Dorothy. My heart ached for her. I know her pain. I live it every day. I just can't say enough about Mrs. Sinclair's Suitcase. It was such a wonderful, heartbreaking story. I'm very grateful that I was asked to review it. I know it'll be one I visit again.
*I received a free hardback in exchange for an honest review.