I have always loved Elizabeth Bergs' books & maybe my expectations were too high. But I found myself disappointed in this book. The storyline seemed to ramble at times and I actually found myself bored while reading it! A first for me when it comes to this writer and her books. It just seemed to miss something...not up to the quality of her previous works.
Whenever I start a Berg book I am always a bit excited, because as an author that I have come to love, I wonder how she can always create such wonderful characters that you care so much about. I am sorry to say that did not happen here.
Dream While You're Feeling blue centers on a little over a year in the life of the Heaney sisters. Kitty, Louise and Tish live in Chicago and when the book opens it is 1943, the height of WWII. Louise and Kitty have sent their respective boyfriends off to war, and younger sister Tish has a bevy of 'friends' she writes to every night, as her sisters write to their men and other boys they come to know at the weekly USO dances. Through these girls lives at home, and the letters they write and receive we get glimpses of both the home front and the war front.
I just didn't care for this book. It seemed like a paint by the numbers version of a WWII book. Ration Coupons, check; girls left behind while the boys go off to war, check; women taking factory jobs, check; Blue Star and Gold Star flags, check; the list goes on and on. At no time did this seem to flow through the story with any authenticity, it didn't feel genuine. I didn't care too much for the three main characters. Louise was too saintly in her demeanor (although she is hiding a big secret); Tish is very immature and doesn't seem to change much and Kitty, who is the main focus of the book, is the only one who shows any growth but still seems rather a chilly personality. The one character I really liked was Margaret Heaney, the girl's mother; unfortunately we only get small glimpses of her. Her story is one I'd really like to get to know.
The biggest flaw in the book is the ending, which is delivered in a startling rush and had me re-reading three times to make sure I understood correctly. The ending left me angry and feeling very shortchanged and extremely disappointed. I truly hope Berg goes back to her more contemporary works and leaves the past to others.
This was a great tale set in the 1940's during WWII when men were off fighting while the women stayed on the homefront and kept the country going. I love this era, so i thouroghly enjoyed this story. It involves 3 sisters who write to various men off at war. The story is heartwarming and bittersweet. Just some advice, DONT FLIP TO THE BACK OF THE BOOK and read the interview with the authour...as it basically will give away the ending. I did this by mistake, and was very discouraged as i read that i would know how it ended!
I LOVED this book. Elizabeth Berg made you feel like you were sitting at the supper table with these girls. I became interested in their "lives" and had a hard time putting the book down. The ending was exciting and completely unexpected. This is well written and thought provoking.
Enjoyable read! I was engrossed from the start, and cared very much about the characters. I didn't see the twist at the end coming, and actually shed a tear at one point (rare for me while reading). Great book!
This is a great book that takes place during WWII. I loved the interactions and relationships of the sisters. They were very realistic. This book was really entertaining and enjoyable, but also very moving at times.
Amy V. (amysv) reviewed Dream When You're Feeling Blue on
starts in the 1940's during WWII, so much atmosphere, such great details of everyday life, food, fashions, how mores were changing, this is Elizabeth Berg at her best, characters who feel and like, dilemmas that everyone has lived. Found the conclusion rather abrupt though, it's as if she lost her flow. But all in all, I so enjoyed this book about sisters and family and being young and vital, and then not do
I really loved this story and by half way through the book I was completely invested in the characters. Historical fiction stories like this that put you smack dab in the middle of a person's life are so emotional and immersive becuase you know that they are at least semi-realistic, it makes the story seem deeper and closer to home. I wasn't happy with the last few chapters, It was an odd mixture of predictability/twist/"realism" but then I suppose that's becuase she didn't sugar coat it. So even though I was disappointed for the characters, I felt satisfied with the outcome after it had time to sink in.
Elizabeth Berg's books are always good and this book is no exception. It's engrossing from the first page, has wonderful characters and gives people a glimpse into what life was like on the home front during WWII. This book is a real treat!
An excellent book about WWII and how it affects a large Irish family in Chicago. Well written, rich characters, brought me back to that time in history (even though I was born in '46). Fabulous and touching story of love, duty, country, family bonds and sacrifice.
I picked this up because I am a fan of Berg's other books, but I found this novel disappointing. It didn't add anything to my understanding of the war years (I have watched many movies from the 1940s), and without that setting as a novel framing device, the reader must rely on the interior life of the characters for the success of the novel. Unfortunately, the fact that the war is going on was pretty much the only interesting traits the characters had.
Honestly, watch Mrs. Miniver instead. (And The Miracle of Morgan's Creek for Tish's story!)