Publisher St. Martin Press, January 22, 2019
This new novel by New York Times bestselling author Lynda Cohen Loigman, author of THE TWO FAMILY HOUSE, will appeal to readers of J. Courtney Sullivan’s Saints for All Occasions and Jennifer Egan’s Manhattan Beach.
Set in the 1940s, Loigman offers readers another family story, this one of two very different Brooklyn-born sisters who love each other but cannot get along. Ruth, the elder sister is serious and well-behaved while Millie, the impetuous younger sister, is far less reliable, but so beautiful that Ruth grows up feeling doomed to always come in at second place.
As World War II is raging in Europe, a quite battle is taking place in Brooklyn.
Eager to leave Brooklyn and her family behind, Ruth marries the first man who asks for her hand, a steady, smart, good man who is an ordinance officer in the US Army. They move to the Springfield Armory in Massachusetts where they begin a family.
But when Ruth and Millie’s parents are killed in a car accident, to avoid taking on responsibility for her younger sister, Ruth secretly encourages Millie’s ne’er-do-well boyfriend Lenny to marry Millie, a marriage that is predictably disastrous. Not only is Lenny a petty criminal, but he abuses Millie and later abandons her, along with their small son.
After Millie receives word that Lenny was killed in the war, Ruth feels obligated to take her in. What will happen to the new life Ruth has so carefully constructed? Can the sisters put the past behind them and make peace? That is the question that lies at the heart of this novel.
“Fresh off her stunning debut The Two Family House, Lynda Cohen Loigman returns with The Wartime Sisters, an evocative home front tale set against the backdrop of the Springfield Armory during World War II. Through stoic, stubborn Ruth and her beautiful younger sister Millie, Loigman skillfully chronicles the complex sibling bonds and rivalries, the secrets we keep and truths that set us free. Loigman’s strong voice and artful prose earn her a place in the company of Alice Hoffman and Anita Diamant, whose readers should flock to this wondrous new book.” — Pam Jenoff, NYT Bestselling Author of The Orphan’s Tale
“Complex and intricately woven, The Wartime Sisters is truly everything I love in a novel. Beautifully written, rich in historical detail, and anchored by two strong women who must reconcile their past – and their secrets – in order to survive. Loigman is a master storyteller and this novel had me from its very first page. – Alyson Richman, international bestselling author of The Lost Wife and The Velvet Hours
“The Wartime Sisters by Lynda Cohen Loigman is a powerful and moving story of secrets, friendship, and sisterhood. In Ruth and Millie, whom we follow from their childhood in Brooklyn to their entwined lives as young mothers at a wartime armory in Springfield, Loigman masterfully portrays the complicated sister relationship. Beautifully written, emotionally charged, and rich with historical detail, this novel, and these sisters, will stay with me long after I turned the last page.” – Jillian Cantor, author of Margot and The Lost Letter