As Bright As Heaven by Susan Meissner
The Bright family never could have predicted how their lives would transpire after moving from the country to Philadelphia. When Tom and Pauline decide to move their three daughters to start anew and create a life in the city, they expect to move forward from the loss they have encountered in losing their youngest son, Henry. As war wages on overseas, and the Spanish flu epidemic hits the cities, escaping death and heartache becomes impossible. Young girls, Evelyn, Maggie, and Willa are pushed into a world of love and loss that no one could have seen coming.
As Bright As Heaven is a beautiful, heart wrenching tale of resilience. Each character, in their own right, has to endure crushing loss. From the very beginning, Pauline and her family losing baby Henry sets forth a motion of heartbreak. It seems as though they won’t get a break then when the war becomes more demanding of their neighbors and family, and once more a tidal wave when the flu hits the city. Through it all, the girls are determined to support one another, care for those they find in their own despair and continually grow within themselves to follow their hearts. I felt a connection to each character, and was encouraged by how the girls’ grew into themselves as young women, yet didn’t lose their unique individual personalities.
Fate plays an extravagant role in the lives of the Bright sisters. These girls are drawn to their interests- their heart strings, but regardless fate found a way to turn their lives in the direction it was planning to head in whether or not they were ready for it. Wow, such a lovely novel that I highly recommend!