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Alice Bliss

Alice Bliss [Kindle Edition]

Laura Harrington
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £7.99
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Product Description


'Fifteen-year-old Alice is clever, funny and not afraid to stand up for what she believes in. So when her father, whom she idolises, leaves home to fight in a war she doesn't believe in, she is distraught. Alice Bliss is a powerful coming-of-age story of love, family and grief.' --Big Issue in the North

'Alice Bliss is a marvelous debut novel by author, Laura Harrignton. More than a simple story about a girl losing her father to a war she can't stop, it's a story of hope & love and growing up overnight. A story that will have you thrilled at the possibility of young love and have your eyes opened wide to the tragedy that comes with wartime. It's possible that I could write for hours about this brilliant novel that is definitely in my Top Ten books ever read, but I won't. I'll simply say, go read this novel it will change you forever!'

'If it sounds like a bit of an emotional heavyweight, it should. Stand by for tear-jerking flashbacks and, at one point, some distant echoes of Cecelia Ahern's PS I Love You. Harrington's playwright roots and heavy use of dialogue making the characters authentic. The emotionally taut conversations between Alice and her mother are particularly well executed.' --Stylist Book of the Week

'This moving debut novel, from playwright Laura Harrington, explores the emotions children experience when a parent goes to war.'
--**** Star Magazine

`Alice is 15 and not afraid to stand up for the things she believes in. But when her beloved father is sent away to war, she finds she has to grow up quickly in an emotional novel from this debut author.' --Bella magazine

`Alice's dad goes to war and then the unthinkable happens. This story of friendship, love, grief and growing up will yank on the heartstrings. And then some.' --Look magazine

`Seen mainly through the eyes of 14 year old Alice - whose relationship with her father is tenderly and movingly realised - she struggles to come to terms with this unlooked-for coming of age . . . The setting and writing style is American through and through, but the relationships at its heart are recognisable anywhere.'
--Sunday Times


"I put down this book and thought, there is no one like this girl, so fully has Harrington brought a new Alice to life. The great sorrow, of course, is that there are many Alice Blisses out there. The power of Harrington's richly delineated novel lies in putting a girl like Alice before us and asking us to remember how many beautiful, feisty others are staring down the long hall of adulthood with a father or a mother gone to war."
-Sarah Blake, bestselling author of "The Postmistress"
"Alice is a true heroine: intelligent, passionate, strong-minded. Watching her find her way is an absorbing pleasure."
-Margot Livesey, author of "The House on Fortune Street"
"This book may be the "Our Town" of the twenty-first century."
-Anne Roiphe, author of "Epilogue: A Memoir"
"Meet Alice Bliss, the heroine of Laura Harrington's gorgeous page-turner of a first novel. Like Scout in Harper Lee's "To Kill a Mockingbird," Alice is destined to become a household

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 663 KB
  • Print Length: 322 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0670022780
  • Publisher: Picador (15 July 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00545QGEA
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #39,871 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A slow burner, but enchanting 7 Jun 2012
By Bob and Billy's Mum TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Alice Bliss tells the story of 15 year old Alice and the relationship she has with her father, whom she adores. Matt Bliss is an Army reservist, but goes to fight in Iraq. Inevitably it is the realisation of life without her father that shapes her life at a time when she is working out her place in the world and relationships around her. Alice is surrounded by family and friends and they share many parts of the story too.

It took me a while to really get into the book, which is part diary, part conversation, part 3rd person narrative. I found the very 'american' happy family backdrop which juxtaposes against the reality of war a little cliched, but once I became absorbed by the character of Alice, I was swept along. The letters are beautiful, and I shed many a tear along the way.

This is a love story, from father to daughter and back again, and I'm glad to have read it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Alice Bliss by Laura Harrington 16 Sep 2012
By iandliz
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Alice Bliss is a fifteen year old living in upstate New York whose father, an army reservist, is called up to serve in Iraq. Alice is a Daddy's girl used to following him around his workshop and helping him chop wood, grow vegetables and mend roofs and she will miss him terribly. We see Alice as her family adjusts to life without Dad, trying to fill the void in her mother's life and maintain a sense of normality for her little sister Ellie.

The book is beautifully written and steadily paced. Alice is at a difficult age, finding her own interests in life and changing feelings towards the boy next door, Henry. I found Harrington's portrayal of teenage angst to be so realistic. Alice plays the aloof teenager, distancing herself emotionally from her family and yet crying out for attention and a hug, which she then dismisses when someone reaches out to her. So frustrating and yet so true to life for anyone who has ever been a teenager or who is raising one.

Although the plot is not fast-paced there is enough going on to make this an entertaining read. We are taken through the full range of emotions from sadness to laughter via uncertainty and fear but ending up most of all with hope for the future and moving on from what has gone before. It makes us think, not just of the servicemen and women at war and the dangers they face but also what it is like for the loved ones they have left behind who must worry about them constantly whilst trying to get on with their lives as normally as possible. I felt Harrington did an excellent job of bringing all this together realistically without resorting to clichés. A job well done and a very good read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
If a novel could have a heartbeat, Alice Bliss would have one. If an author could capture a slice of America's soul, Laura Harrington succeeded in doing so!

Alice Bliss is the story of Alice, a fifteen-year-old faced with the absence of her father who, as a member of the New York National Guard, is sent to Iraq. Laura Harrington does an exceptional job bringing Alice Bliss to life along with the supporting characters, that you will find yourself completely enthralled in her story. Each sentence leads the reader to form images and sounds and emotions and tastes and smells that jump right off the page. It's no wonder, Alice Bliss has received so many awards.
This novel is nothing short of a gift, a blessing to those who walk in Alice Bliss's shoes every day, but find it difficult to explain to others the emotions created by the absence of a family member who serves our nation. It also serves as a comfort to those who have experienced loss and provides hope when the world seems to dim.
Read Alice Bliss and see how poignant, powerful, stunning, and alive a novel can be. Pick it up, read it, share it, talk about it!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant 15 July 2012
By Carly
Really enjoyed this book but would advise you have a tissue at the ready as its a tear jerker, but a good read
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Moving and compelling 10 July 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
Alice Bliss, a 15 year old girl, is one of the most honest characters in a coming-of-age story that I have ever read. A daddy's girl, going through the trials of adolescence as her father serves in Falluja in Iraq. The detail and intensity of even the slightest change in emotion is perfectly executed by Harrington who makes us laugh, cry and sympathise wholeheartedly with the Bliss family. I couldn't put it down and urge others to read Alice's bravery and ponder on the true value of family and paternal relationships.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent story 23 Jun 2012
By Nana B
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A most moving story. So many times I wanted to cheat and look at the end to see how it ends. This I never normally do but this book really gripped me. It was funny as well but so moving. Such a good book
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Alice Bliss - Bliss! 6 Mar 2012
Not being one for having a great 'dad' relationship, I erred away from this at first, but am so glad to have overcome this to read it. Although based around the father-daughter relationship, it encompasses so much more, from family dynamics to war to the experiences of being someone a bit different.

It's beautifully written, with an ease which allows you to flow through it, absorbed and involved in the characters.

Wherever you stand in your opinions on the situation it deals with, you can relate to all the characters - as someone who doesn't stand anywhere particularly firmly, I was taken along with the journey and found that I had to stop reading in downtimes at work as I was precariously close to forgetting I was at work!

Overall, I found it a pleasure to read - absorbing and emotionally engrossing.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable
A great insight into a teenager's life as she copes with her father missing in action. A thoroughly enjoyable read.
Published 6 months ago by Anne-Marie
4.0 out of 5 stars Worth reading
This book is about wartime and the families left behind, and the impact on children trying to cope with it all. Moving and beautifully written.
Published 9 months ago by Macca
4.0 out of 5 stars A real heart wrencher
I wasn't really expecting much from this book but it was such a good read. A story of a family that is separated and how each deals with things in their own unique way. Read more
Published 12 months ago by Nikki Cunnah
4.0 out of 5 stars A good, easy read
A friend gave me this book for my birthday, and although I possibly wouldn't have picked it up otherwise, I haven't been disappointed. Read more
Published 13 months ago by JL Bowes
3.0 out of 5 stars Alice Bliss - Laura Harrington
This was a choice by my book club, and judging by the cover and the blurb on the back I probably wouldn't have chosen to read it.But, I'm glad it was chosen. Read more
Published 16 months ago by Jaycey
2.0 out of 5 stars depressing
It takes a lot for me to say I don't like a book - there's generally something I can settle on. Found this one too sad for me
Published 19 months ago by Mrs Gemma Godwin
5.0 out of 5 stars An amazing and powerful story
This has to be right up there as one of the best books I have ever read. I look back to when I first picked it up and feeling reluctant to read it and now wonder why I ever felt... Read more
Published 19 months ago by Katie85
5.0 out of 5 stars Best book ever!
This book was perfect. It's the best book I've ever read. That's all you can really say about it.
I'm 16 but I think that adults would also enjoy this book too.
Published 19 months ago by Lei
5.0 out of 5 stars alice bliss
wonderful story well written, the emotion of the writing makes you feel at one with the 15 year old Alice
Published 19 months ago by melani
4.0 out of 5 stars A good read
I enjoyed reading this book although it is a sad very true how the families suffer when loved ones go to war
Published 23 months ago by Jogger
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