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My last memory of my daddy was watching him walk out to his helicopter at the Norfolk Naval Base, where his student pilots waited respectfully at attention, their helmets under their arms.
They saluted him, and he saluted back. Then he turned to smile at me the way he always did whenever Mommy brought me to see him take off in a helicopter. He and I called it putting sunshine in our faces. In the years to follow, that smile would fade slowly like an old photograph until my imagination did more for it than my memory.
His face would always brighten with a fresh, happy surprise when he looked back at me standing beside Mommy. The specks of hazel in his otherwise light blue eyes would become more prominent. He used to call me Sailor Girl, and we would salute each other with only two fingers. He did it one last time that day. I responded with my salute, and then he turned back to his men.
My eyes drifted to a sea gull that looked lost, confused, even a bit frantic. It did a quick turn and dipped before shooting off toward the ocean as if it had seen something that had terrified it. I watched it until the sounds of the helicopter motors ripped the air and pulled my attention back to Daddy.
I stepped closer to Mommy. Something dark had already put its cold fingers on the back of my neck. My heart sank, and my stomach felt queasy. I had to feel Mommy beside me. Even at fifteen, I needed to be within the walls of her security. She and Daddy were my fortress. Nothing could harm me when I was with them.
"How he stands that noise is beyond me," Mommy said, but she looked so proud and so beautiful with her shoulder-length apricot brown hair dancing about her chin and cheeks. She was five feet ten and always stood with an air of confidence, regal. Anyone who glanced her way stared at her for a few moments longer as if he or she were hypnotized by her beauty.
Mommy's eyes were almost navy blue, which Daddy said proved she belonged with him, a navy man. She was as loyal to him as he was to the flag, her devotion and her admiration for him unflappable. My eyes were more turquoise, but I wished they were more like Mommy's so Daddy would think I, too, was meant to be always at his side.
"C'mon, Grace," she said. "I have errands to run, and you have studying to do and a guest for dinner."
She nudged me, and I followed along reluctantly. Something was telling me to stay as long as I could. I looked back only once as the helicopters lifted. I didn't see Daddy, and that disappointed me. They whirled off toward the ocean, following the sea gull.
A cloud blocked out the sun, and a long shadow fell around us as we continued toward our car.
I would remember that.
I would remember it all for a very long time.
And then, like the sea gull, it would all disappear into the distance and leave me standing alone, yearning for just one more smile, one more salute.
Copyright © 2003 by the Vanda General Partnership
Posted May 10, 2007
I read this book way back in 2003 when I was 15 and it left me feeling funny. I've read it at least twice since and every time I re-read it I see Jackie Lee as a very evil woman. Not only is she selfish, but she's vindictive too. After her husband dies she starts feeling like the world owes her something and she uses an older man to get everything she wants. Grace tries hard to fit into the new life her mother has chosen (rather carelessly) for them. Instead Grace is rejected over and over again and finally breaks down mentally. With no regard for her daughter Jackie Lee marries a younger man who has no intentions on being anything, but a leech. He sexually abuses Grace who's not in her right mind. She get's pregnant which throws her deeper into the abyss. After she has the baby she's too far gone to be saved and ends up in a mental clinic for the rich. This book includes so much sorrow and it truly shows the emptiness of the rich and of the poor. This book is very deep. It took me four years to understand this book, but I finally got it so I recommend it.
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Posted December 28, 2013
So it seems with each 5 book series, the last book in the series is a prequel. Like with flowers in the attic you had garden of shadows and with this series you have into the woods. If you already read the other books then you know what's to happen with our MC in this one. And wow was it uncomfortable. And sad. Both really. You feel for Grace and what her to find some happiness you know? This series..just...ugh!!!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 2, 2007
Into the woods was not like I thought it would be. At first the book started off O.K. but when I reached the middle and towards the end, it was not like I wanred it to be. Its not like this book is good, its that the end really killed it.
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Posted August 23, 2006
This is more of a prequel told through the point of view of Willow's mother Grace Montgomery and the story behind her years leading up to Kirby, Lindin, Claude and lastly Willow.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 3, 2004
It's very upsetting to me that a story supposedly well written,we tend to take our family life for granted.Grace had a close relationship with her father,but I can't understand the fact that after her father dies,her mother puts aside her pride and whisks Grace away to a place that makes Grace feel inferior to her mothers selfish behavior in the men she chooses.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted June 27, 2003
I'm not even half way done with this book, and I already know it's disappointing. First off, this is supposed to be a prequal to the first three books of the DeBeers series. And unless I'm mistaken, the first three started out in as much of present time as possible, and probably ventured a little into the 'future.' But Into The Woods is supposed to take place in the PAST. In not only the series' history, but I believe ours as well. So, how come the author is obviously placing this story in the present? It should take place in the 80's at the latest, but as far as I can recall, I don't think the Internet AND e-mail were as commonly used back then as is shown in this book, and I don't think anyone knew of Shania Twain yet. So, that gives me the further impression that the author has not been thinking about the books he's handing out. It's like he's just writing them to meet deadlines and get paid. They have no substance, and their always almost the same plot line. And it really angers me that we still haven't ventured from the same main heroine type. She's always portrayed as being so much better than everyone around her, except of course, for her parent's or her own children, usually. She's always perfect in school, really smart, yet is ALWAYS niave too...which is getting to be a little unbelievable. Her friends are never as good looking as her, they always have some flaw, whether their 'plump' or 'fuller figured' than her, or their eyes are too close together...whatever. And, their not as smart as she is. They always have emotional problems. And in this book I was easily able to predict that even though Grace's friend Autumn had a huge crush on this one guy, for some reason the guy likes GRACE! This always happens. And, if there are any girls who become her aquantance who are as pretty as her or prettier, they always are the enemies. They have bad attitudes, and you can always see it in their eyes for some reason. It's like, in the world of VC Andrews (just by name, i mean, not the actual vc, who was an awesome writer) no one but the main protagonist can be both beautiful and smart and NICE at the same time. If I hadn't read all of the already written VCA books, and made an unofficial pact with myself to keep the tradition up as each book comes out, just so I can say I've read them all, I would NOT read this book, or any others by 'VC' in the future. Please, what happened to the old but wonderful tradition of VC Andrews story telling? This is getting very old. These stories aren't well thought out, they seem hastily written, no matter how many details of random things are put in there, and the stories are all the same! Find a better technique, or quit dragging VC Andrews' good name in the mud.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted June 3, 2003
This book was okay, but it is not modeled after V.C. Andrews style. I think the first couple of books he wrote after VCA died showed that he was really making an effort to write in her style (The Cutler series is a good example). Now after the last few books ... (I'd say since they started coming out with all these miniseries with all these characters...which should have never been done in my opinion)I just feel like I am reading another writer's books that just happen to have VCA's name on the cover.I basically now collect VCA books just for the sake of collecting them (I have all of them except Broken Wings). Read this book if you want some reading material, but if you read 'Flowers in the Attic' or 'Heaven' (and loved them), and haven't read VCA since but want to revive your interest -- be prepared to be disappointed with this book.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted April 15, 2003
Well first I'd like to say the way I got into V.C. Andrews books was when we were going through boxes getting ready for the move. My mom pulled out two of her old V.C. Andrews books tarnished gold and hidden shadows since then I've been hooked on them though I started out with only two books, I know have 45 and am still collectingWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted April 1, 2003
Well this book at the beginning was really good, but toward the end it got a little silly. I noticed that in the middle of the book Grace's mom was the only one talking and all Grace did was agree. Grace could have had more of an opinion. I was also shocked that her mother had turned into such a tyrant. It was aso weird how Grace's Mother hadn't even noticed her slipping away. The book also left with a bunch of loose ends. What ever happened with Trent or the others? And the book never said why Randy was in that car. This was a little dissapointing, but overall I liked how Grace expressed her feelings. I just wished she had told her mother her feelings, even if she didn't listen.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 30, 2003
I have collected all of the V C Andrews books thus far.The books are mind catching and you cant put them down.Keep up the good work and hope to aquire the next one soon.Make another one to go with My Sweet Adrina its the only one by itself. Thanks....Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 3, 2003
Overall this was a good book. There were some things that popped out to me as funny. This book supposedly is about Grace who was Willows mother so it should have been written more in a time frame that was years and years ago, however when Grace and her mother were in a diner after her father died there is a mention of a Shania Twain song on the juke box which was funny, and there are a lot of references to the internet which surely was not around then. Overall as I said though it is a good story.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 25, 2003
Posted November 27, 2002
Posted December 11, 2002
Posted December 12, 2002
I wasn't much of a reader...until that is I picked up one of V.C. Andrews books one day! Then I just couldn't get enough...I have read every book she has written and can't wait for the next one to come out. I almost go into withdrawl symptoms waiting to see what's going to happen next in each series. Keep up the good work!!!!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted December 5, 2002
I HAVE READ THE FIRST THREE BOOKS AND I ENJOYED THEM VERY MUCH. I COULD NOT PUT THE BOOK DOWN UNTIL I FINISHED IT. IM VERY ANXIOUS TO READ THIS ONE. I HPE THE FOURTH BOOK IS JUST AS GOOD OR BETTER.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted April 18, 2009
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Posted July 25, 2010
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Posted October 6, 2013
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Posted January 5, 2012
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