THE LAST GREEN VALLEY By MARK SULLIVAN
A Review By MONICA WEST, Monica Reads
Do you want a page-turner book to read? Do you want to learn something about the Ukraine issue? Are you interested and learning about the past? Do you know how you feel about self-reliance, honesty and compassion? Do you think your life is serendipitous or self-made?
Okay then, this book is a must read for you. The author follows the lives of the Martel family who were born and raised in rural Ukraine. Their story is real. The author has used their basic information and how they found their last green valley.
Do you know what the Holodomor of 1932 –1933 was? Do you know that four million Ukrainians died in this era. Stalin also imprisoned and enslaved millions of people in the aftermath of World War II. The Martel family were Ukrainians of ethnic German blood. Was this a hindrance or a blessing?
The Martel family were farmers and l fell in love with the characters in the family. They were loyal, loving, forgiving and as nutty and fun as some of my family. The communist regime seemed to go out of its way to punish the people who worked hard and knew how to bring in a good harvest. The prisons in Siberia were always to be feared. This book had me at the first chapter and I couldn’t put it down.
After reading the book, I have been looking at my life through the lens of my feelings of connection to the rest of the world. What would I do in these situations? Adeline is the heroine and Emil is the hero.
Mark Sullivan has conjured up a world that I fear is going to happen on my children’s time on this earth. Beware. This book will make you think, teach you about an historical horror time and make you think about what is really important in your life?
Mark Sullivan took a tale he heard of a family from Ukraine and made it historically accurate with some fictitious characters added to fill in gaps that could not be found in his search of this family. It broadened my horizon on why and how the Ukrainian people today are standing behind a red line to keep the Russians out of their country.
Monica West reviews books for InDepthNH.org. Monica is known for her love of history and her lifelong love for reading. She has a bachelor’s degree in History, with a minor in English. “My years of reading for leisure and pleasure have given me the insight to read a book and analyze the author’s baggage, cargo and ability to write the language of his/her mind and utilize the gift of prose to educate and entertain the reader. Go get a book, read it and enjoy the adventure.”