Review: The Edelweiss Sisters by Kate Hewitt

Johanna, Birgit and Lotte Eder have always lived quiet lives, working in their father’s clockmaking shop and helping their mother in the house. But like many other Austrians, they find it impossible to ignore the changes in the world around them.

Can three women who would die for each other, also be prepared to die for what is right?

Review

The Edelweiss Sisters is yet another stunning, poignant read by Kate Hewitt.

This is a story of three sisters, Johanna being the eldest. She is always by her mother’s side taking care of their household. It seems that is the plan that her parents have for her life. However, Johanna has different plans and ambitions that do not involve spending her life in a kitchen. Her plans drastically changes though when she meets her father’s new apprentice, Franz.

Birgit is the second sister in the Eder’s family. She spends her days working with her father in the family’s clockmaking business. Birgit is content with her role but that soon changes when her father takes on a new apprentice. Lotte is the youngest sister. She is beautiful, talented and full of life. Her parents have big ambitions for her but she instead yearns for a much more quiet, serene life. These three are the Edelweiss sisters. The normalcy of their lives, dreams and ambitions was soon shattered by the influence of Nazism in Austria.

The story is narrated through three POVs alternating between the sisters. At first, the narratives were separate as each sister had her own life and ambitions. With the Nazis coming though, the stories began to merge. Each of the POVs was captivating. The three characters were so well developed with very interesting stories that I did not favor any over the others.

This was a unique, poignant read. I have read plenty of stories about World War 2 with Germany and France being the setting. However, this is the first story that I have read set in Austria. It illustrates how the Austrians were affected by Nazism. The Eder family was so endearing and I enjoyed meeting other characters such as Franz and Weber through this family.

This is undoubtedly a heartbreaking read. It is quite well -written and utterly captivating. Despite the heavy themes, I couldn’t stop turning the pages. I highly recommend The Edelweiss Sisters by Kate Hewitt to all fans of historical fiction.