The Cherry Harvest

The Cherry Harvest

Book - 2015
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A memorable coming-of-age story and love story, laced with suspense, which explores a hidden side of the home front during World War II, when German POWs were put to work in a Wisconsin farm community . . . with dark and unexpected consequences.

The war has taken a toll on the Christiansen family. With food rationed and money scarce, Charlotte struggles to keep her family well fed. Her teenage daughter, Kate, raises rabbits to earn money for college and dreams of becoming a writer. Her husband, Thomas, struggles to keep the farm going while their son, and most of the other local men, are fighting in Europe.

When their upcoming cherry harvest is threatened, strong-willed Charlotte helps persuade local authorities to allow German war prisoners from a nearby camp to pick the fruit.

But when Thomas befriends one of the prisoners, a teacher named Karl, and invites him to tutor Kate, the implications of Charlotte's decision become apparent--especially when she finds herself unexpectedly drawn to Karl. So busy are they with the prisoners that Charlotte and Thomas fail to see that Kate is becoming a young woman, with dreams and temptations of her own--including a secret romance with the son of a wealthy, war-profiteering senator. And when their beloved Ben returns home, bitter and injured, bearing an intense hatred of Germans, Charlotte's secrets threaten to explode their world.

Publisher: New York :, William Morrow,, [2015]
Edition: First edition
Copyright Date: ♭2015
ISBN: 9780062343628
Characteristics: 326 pages


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Dec 11, 2016

I also read this book in one day. Many twists and turns, many of which were to be expected and some a bit questionable but on a cold winter day it was a good distraction.

Aug 07, 2015

Sanna has created an enjoyable first novel. Set in Wisconsin during World War II, it presents a accurate picture of life on the Home Front. Husband and wife, Thomas and Charlotte, own a cherry orchard, and with the young men fighting in Europe and the Pacific, they encourage the growers to turn to prisoners of war to harvest the crop. As expected, this turns out to be both good and bad. Karl, becomes almost a part of the family, tutoring their daughter, Kate, in math as she prepares for college. But the attempted rape of Charlotte by another PW changes the picture entirely, especially when the couple’s son, returns from the war in Europe with deep resentment of the German prisoners of war. At times I was confused at whose story this was; that of Charlotte’s or Kates. (LibraryThing Review copy). The book came to a conclusion abruptly, and although I still had unanswered questions, I read this book in two evenings. (Librarything review copy)

Jul 06, 2015

I read this fast-paced novel in almost one sitting. It's 1944 in Door County, Wisconsin and the Christiansen family is desperate for workers to pick their cherry harvest. Since the harvest wasn't picked in 1943, Charlotte Christiansen is convinced that using German POWs this year will allow her family to have money for food and other necessities for the next year. Despite much community controversy, the prisoners arrive. An uneasy truce exists until a prisoner is killed after attacking Charlotte. Fascinating characters, unexpected plot twists, and the differing experiences of Americans during World War II make an unforgettable novel.

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