Book Title: Three Daughters
Book Author: Consuelo Saah Baehr
Book Rating: ☆☆☆☆ (4 out of 5 stars)
Synopsis: “From the fertile hills of a tiny village near Jerusalem to the elegant townhouses of Georgetown, Three Daughters is a historical saga that chronicles the lives, loves, and secrets of three generations of Palestinian Christian women.
Born in rural Palestine, just before the dawn of the twentieth century, Miriam adores her father and is certain his love will protect her, but she soon finds that tradition overrides love. Uprooted by war, Miriam enters a world where the old constraints slip away with thrilling and disastrous results. Miriam’s rebellious daughter, Nadia, is thrilled with the opportunity for a modern life that her elite education provides. But when she falls in love with an outsider, the clan reins her back with a shocking finality. Nijmeh, Nadia’s daughter, is an only child and the path her father, the sheik, sets for her is fraught with difficulties, yet it prepares her for her ultimate journey to America, where she finds her future.
Each woman, in her own time and in her own way, experiences a world in transition through war and social change…and each must stretch the bounds of her loyalty, her courage, and her heart.”
This is a sprawling family saga depicting the lives of three generations of Palestinian women. There’s always been something about family sagas that has appealed to me, and this one was quite enjoyable. Despite the substantial size of this book (720 pages), I didn’t really feel that the story ever seemed to drag along. It was absolutely fascinating to read about the lives of these Middle Eastern women, and a culture that I honestly knew very little about. The synopsis for this book was a little vague, so I wasn’t really sure what to expect other than a story of three generations of women. For the few first chapters, I thought that maybe this book was Christian fiction, but after the first “love scene” I quickly dismissed that idea. This is a piece of fiction that is very hard to fit perfectly into one genre because the story has so many layers.
The book begins with the story of Miriam, and then trickles down to her daughter Nadia, and then her adopted granddaughter Nijmeh. You know those stories where you find yourself becoming so engrossed in the lives of the characters that you find yourself beginning to care about them as if they are real people? This is one of those books. Each of these women were so vividly described and completely unique, and their strength and determination blew me away. Each is faced with their own struggles during their lives, with hardships ranging from an unwanted marriage to being displaced during the war to infertility to immigrating to America. I honestly cannot say enough good things about this book, and would recommend this to anyone who loves historical fiction or family sagas.
Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book from Netgalley.