Love and loss during the tragedy of war

Guernica is a classic story which stretches for a period of nearly half a century, and allows the reader to watch the characters grow from youth into adulthood.

Boling, in this first novel, begins in 1893 with brothers Justo, Josepe and Xabier Ansotegui growing up together on a sheep farm in Guernica.

Their mother died after giving birth to Xabier.

Justo and his two younger brothers run their farm and raised themselves after their father left them. Josepe became a fisherman on the coast of Spain, while Xabier became a priest.

Justo married a Basque girl who gave birth to their daughter, Miren.

Justo's wife and daughter are both dancers and cheerfully spirited women. Even as war strips the Basque people of food and supplies, the people remain vibrant and united.

You will find out how the war affected European countries and how they responded to it. The story behind Pablo Picasso's famous Guernica comes up throughout the novel.

The bombing shocked the world and inspired Picasso, a native of Spain living in Paris, to create one of his best-known paintings. Picasso's black-and-white mural, Guernica, is a powerful icon, offering a clear statement on the horrors of war.

Many people might be more familiar with the Picasso painting of Guernica than with the historical tragedy that inspired it. Boling knits the fictional story of the Ansotegui family with the story of Picasso's painting.

It is a story of unimaginable tragedy and determination to recover and motivation to live again. Overall, the novel is about loss, love and endurance.

The story of the bombing of Guernica is so moving and sad that it becomes almost unbearable.