I had the wonderful pleasure of reading this book as part of the goodreads give away! I cannot recommend this book enough. I was shocked to find this was the authors' first novel.
This is a wonderful story that takes you from the beginning of WWII to Sept 10, 2001. Not only is there a wonderful love story that covers throughout this time, there is a wonderful first person narration from multiple people of what it was like to be a solider in WWII and to live in these eras in history. I am a huge lover of history and they did a wonderful job of being accurate about the true history while making it enjoyable with the characters. This is a story that will stay with you long after you finish.
The plot: Joel is about to leave for WWII when a chance encounter has him meeting the women of his dreams while trying to buy a present for his aunt. One problem is she is engaged and her man is already serving overseas. Despite this the two fall in love and promise to get married when he returns. However, when her fiance returns with extreme injuries it causes her to call off her plans with Joel. The rest of the story is about the paths their lives take in the following years and what happens to the country as well. The second plot is about a girl and her struggle to become an author and find a path for her life. She is devastated to see that in her spending 3 years to write a novel on Dolly Madison has been one upped by no other then Joel. It is so exciting to see what is going to happen next.