"This compulsively readable tale of loss and love during and after the Second World War is a masterpiece." —Kristin Harmel, New York Times bestselling author
"A gorgeously written, impeccably researched historical novel, spanning decades and continents, and filled with a richly drawn cast of characters." —Jillian Cantor, USA TODAY bestselling author
This epic World War II tale of star-crossed lovers separated by class, circumstance, and tragedy—from the international bestselling author of the "gripping...filled with passion and hope" (Kate Quinn, New York Timesbestselling author) The Girl They Left Behind—explores the impact of war on civilian life and the indestructible resilience of first love. Hungary, 1943: As war encroaches on the country's borders, willful young Eva César arrives in the idyllic town of Sopron to spend her last summer as a single woman on her aristocratic family's estate. Longing for freedom from her domineering father, she counts the days to her upcoming nuptials to a kind and dedicated Red Cross doctor whom she greatly admires.
But Eva's life changes when she meets Aleandro, a charming and passionate Romani fiddler and artist. With time and profound class differences against them, Eva and Aleandro still fall deeply in love—only to be separated by a brutal act of hatred.
As each are swept into the tides of war, they try to forget their romance. Yet, the haunting memory of that summer will reshape their destinies and lead to decisions which are felt through generations.
From the horrors of the Second World War to the tensions of the 1956 Hungarian uprising and beyond, When the Summer Was Ours is a sweeping story about the toll of secrets, the blurred lines between sacrifice and obsession, and the endurance of the human spirit.