The Great Alone

by Kristen Hannah

The Great Alone is a novel about survival. Ernt Albright has survived as a POW of the Vietnam War and now he is trying to survive life with PTS. Cora, Ernt’s wife, is trying to survive the unpredictable violence of her husband. Their daughter  Leni is learning to survive the volatility of her home life. To compound this need for survival, Ernt decides to move his family to an isolated cabin in Alaska, where they intend to live off the land…and off the grid. 

Once in Alaska, Ernt becomes involved with a group of anti-government survivalists, thus feeding his paranoia and violent outbursts.

With her father’s escalating violence and her mother’s inability to leave, Leni attempts to live life as best she can by attending school and becoming friends with the only person her age, a boy named Matthew with whom she eventually falls in love.

Soon her father’s rage and paranoia become so intense, Leni begins to fear for her life and the lives of those she loves.

The Great Alone is a quick and easy read. Its plot is engaging but at times predictable. It was a perfect read for me to finish in a day of airports and layovers.

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