The Four WindsKristin Hannah

The Four Winds

4.5 star

Total 5,611 Ratings

The Four Winds by Kristin Hannah Book Summary


"The Four Winds seems eerily prescient in 2021 . . . Its message is galvanizing and hopeful: We are a nation of scrappy survivors. We’ve been in dire straits before; we will be again. Hold your people close.”—The New York Times

"A spectacular tour de force that shines a spotlight on the indispensable but often overlooked role of Greatest Generation women."—People

"Through one woman’s survival during the harsh and haunting Dust Bowl, master storyteller, Kristin Hannah, reminds us that the human heart and our Earth are as tough, yet as fragile, as a change in the wind." —Delia Owens, author of Where the Crawdads Sing

From the number-one bestselling author of The Nightingale and The Great Alone comes a powerful American epic about love and heroism and hope, set during the Great Depression, a time when the country was in crisis and at war with itself, when millions were out of work and even the land seemed to have turned against them.

“My land tells its story if you listen. The story of our family.”

Texas, 1921. A time of abundance. The Great War is over, the bounty of the land is plentiful, and America is on the brink of a new and optimistic era. But for Elsa Wolcott, deemed too old to marry in a time when marriage is a woman’s only option, the future seems bleak. Until the night she meets Rafe Martinelli and decides to change the direction of her life. With her reputation in ruin, there is only one respectable choice: marriage to a man she barely knows.

By 1934, the world has changed; millions are out of work and drought has devastated the Great Plains. Farmers are fighting to keep their land and their livelihoods as crops fail and water dries up and the earth cracks open. Dust storms roll relentlessly across the plains. Everything on the Martinelli farm is dying, including Elsa’s tenuous marriage; each day is a desperate battle against nature and a fight to keep her children alive.

In this uncertain and perilous time, Elsa—like so many of her neighbors—must make an agonizing choice: fight for the land she loves or leave it behind and go west, to California, in search of a better life for her family.

The Four Winds is a rich, sweeping novel that stunningly brings to life the Great Depression and the people who lived through it—the harsh realities that divided us as a nation and the enduring battle between the haves and the have-nots. A testament to hope, resilience, and the strength of the human spirit to survive adversity, The Four Winds is an indelible portrait of America and the American dream, as seen through the eyes of one indomitable woman whose courage and sacrifice will come to define a generation.

The Four Winds (Kristin Hannah) Book Reviews

Can't stop crying!Had no idea the ending would touch me so much. Great read..Score: 5/5

Amazing, heart-wrenching storyA very inspiring, sad and thoughtful story that also educated me on an issue I knew little about. Excellent read..Score: 5/5

So good!A great, easy read- makes you think about your blessings today. My hope for every reader is to find yourself in this story and do better!.Score: 5/5

The Four WindsEvery sentence painted a vivid picture of love, courage and a spirit that surpasses all hardships, fears with a determination to rise above our circumstances. A very great read!.Score: 5/5

Sad and lovelyNot an easy read but worth it.Score: 5/5

I couldn’t put it down.This is the book they should have given us in high school instead of grapes of wrathe..Score: 5/5

One of the best books you will ever read. Savor each page. Reflect on the true message.Incredible journey. Strength, spirit, courage, risk, love..Score: 5/5

Fantastic👏.Score: 5/5

Excellent historic fictionOnce again Hannah's in creates a beautiful story of mothers and daughters. In the backdrop of a horrific time in American history, she captures the horror of the time and the resilience of a mothers love and fierce strength that mothers have. I can't stop reading this author. Her research of the dust bowl period was eye opening to me. I have bought her books for family and friends, too. Highly recommend this book and her others..Score: 5/5

5/5Kristen Hannah does it again. This is a must read! I highly recommend The Great Alone & The Nightingale also..Score: 5/5

Five starsLove this book. Slow start but then hard to put down kept thinking of similarities to today’s problems at one point enjoyed this book totally and learned from it. Never knew much about the Great Depression in depth but I can see this being many’s story. Oysterlady.Score: 5/5

Just fantasticThe four winds us there, bringing us back to reality today by see through their eyes the hardships they all endured and we are today humble we are today, and lucky we are with all we have, when they had nothing in a cruel world and still survived. Mikel M , March 2021 Las Vegas NV.Score: 5/5

A sad, sad bookThe book was well written, however it was the saddest book I ever read. I kept checking the number of pages left and was hoping for a happy moment. It never came. It was a sad time in history and a sad depiction..Score: 5/5

A great read!I could hardly put the book down. Made me feel as if I was in it. I highly recommend it!.Score: 5/5

The Four WindsThis was a book I could not put down. Very well written! Heart wrenching, spell binding, interesting, emotional! Everything in one beautiful story!.Score: 5/5

WowBeautiful and moving.Score: 5/5

Excellent read for any motherThe first book I have read in years. Soup for the soul and grounded in real hardships yet wrapped in love..Score: 5/5

So disappointedI am half way through the book and could summarize what happened in three depressing pages. I feel like I need to read the book because I paid for it, but it is a chore and a drag. So disappointing, save the money & time and pick another..Score: 1/5

Love it!I looked forward to reading it every night. I didn’t want the book to end. Enjoyed it very much!.Score: 5/5

Kept waiting for a turn...Painfully sad and pointless..Score: 1/5

Excellent ReadThis author never lets me down. Makes me proud to be a strong warrior.Score: 5/5

BeautifulJust read it, it’ll be worth your time..Score: 5/5

Depressing BookNothing good happens.Score: 3/5

WonderfulNever knew about this chapter of American history. What a wonderful story of courage and perseverance!.Score: 5/5

Depressing ReadIf you like to read for enjoyment and to escape this is not the book for you. While the book is well written. The main character in the story has almost every possible depressing thing happen to her that existed during the Great Depression. Including the ending. I kept reading because I thought it has to get better, but it really didn't. However it does show as a nation how far we have come to support low income workers. And while this year has been tough it's been nothing compared to the Great Depression..Score: 3/5

Very moving.I cried, wiped my tears, then cried again. When a book (and author) can make the reader feel what the characters are feeling, it is a truly remarkable experience. I highly recommend this book..Score: 5/5

Heart wrenching, inspiring, a lesson for today more than ever.Quite simply, the most empowering book I’ve ever read!.Score: 5/5

You won’t regret it.Couldn’t put it down. Spectacular!.Score: 5/5

Another Winner!Loved learning about The Dust Bowl era! The author once again craftily develops the characters to draw you into her story..Score: 5/5

The four winds guide usThe historical truths in this wonderful story about fortitude are timeless and fundamentally human. Elsa is each of us..Score: 5/5

The Four Winds by K HannahOne of the most beautiful books I have read..Score: 5/5

Loved this book and learning about the history of The Great Plains and droughts of 1930’s. effectedPerseverance of people held me steady and hopeful in our human nature through any crisis!.Score: 5/5

Loved it!This was one of the best books I have read in a long time. I was brought to tears several times..Score: 5/5

Four WindsExcellent book. Could not put it down. The history of on going bias in this country and the cruelty to people always astounds me. The description of the dust storm made me feel like I was right there with them. No happy endings here..Score: 5/5

Love, courage, and fmailyAn amazing book, filled with twists and turns. You will learn a great about the Depression and what it means to be a family..Score: 5/5

Too SadI love to read. I love twists and turns, highs and lows, sadness and joy. This story, which was beautifully written, was a never ending sadness..Score: 4/5

Be braveBe brave... best book I’ve read all year..Score: 5/5

Heart-breaking yet inspiringThis is a true American tale of resilience through terrible times. As always, this author does not disappoint..Score: 5/5

Firefly laneLoved it. Couldn’t put down. Read last 10 chapters in one night!!.Score: 5/5

PowerfulThe only single word to describe this book is powerful. Full of heartache and struggle this family faces. Beautifully written the author takes you on a journey full of emotions. Absolutely loved this book and I shed some tears along the journey with each character..Score: 5/5

Four windsGreat read! Really puts everything into perspective. Especially in today’s times..Score: 5/5

Wow...The Four WindsOnly one word I can say.... AMAZING!.Score: 5/5

Not since reading John Steinbeck have I enjoyed a book so muchThe Four Winds by Kristen Hannah is a epic novel about the hardships faced by farmers in the Texas Panhandle during the Great Depression and Drought. It is the story of one woman’s courage and fight to survive in order to give her children a better life. Like John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath, it follows the central characters from their drought stricken farm in the Dust Bowl to California in search of the American Dream that, in reality, becomes an American nightmare as the family faces prejudice, corruption, neglect, abject poverty and starvation in the land of milk and honey. Characters are well developed; the story is riveting and the plight of this family makes your heart weep and your mind cry out for justice..Score: 5/5

Beautiful StoryBeautiful story..terribly sad but triumphant at the same time. I love story and many different types of love but all love nonetheless..Score: 5/5

Great storyI could feel the grit in my eyes and wonder how they made it through even one day of those storms..Score: 4/5

An amazing story of hope, strength and courage!Remarkable story!.Score: 5/5

Amazing plain and simpleAs a reader who normally prefers non-fiction, The Four Winds captured me completely. A page turner and emotional roller coaster. The development of the characters is remarkable. You can see them, you can feel what they feel, you can empathize. Tragedy and triumph through tragedy ... it’s a concept I was not prepared for. Excellent read..Score: 5/5

Basically Grapes of WrathStory is very similar to Grapes of Wrath. Wonderful read nonetheless.Score: 4/5

The Four WindsI just finished this magnificent book. I learned so much about what happened during the “Dust Bowl” era. Coming from a very strong Union family I only wish I could have shared it with my late husband, who participated in many local strikes. This is my first reading by Kristin Hannah. I cannot wait to start another one of her books..Score: 5/5

MLBSo I.Score: 5/5

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Amazing!Wonderfully written with rich colorful characters. Gripping novel that shows the horrors of the great depression and the poverty that ensued from American greed. Another great novel by Kristin Hannah..Score: 5/5

Another Wonderful NovelThank you for another wonderful novel!! I couldn’t put this down and I was sad when I was nearing the end. Can’t wait for another!.Score: 5/5

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