June 22, 1940 was when France surrendered to Hitler, the French government went into hiding, and the German occupation of France began. Kristin Hannah writes an amazing story of a family, already dispersed by tragedy, each fighting to stay alive in occupied France during WWII. Along with the harsh treatment of the French, there was a shortage of food - most of the food was taken to feed the German armies. Jewish friends were ousted from their homes and businesses, and two sisters worked to protect Jewish children and get downed allied airmen home by guiding them over the Pyrenes mountains to Spain.
This is a powerful, tense, and gripping novel. Be sure to keep a box of tissues nearby. Definitely one for my favorite books of the year list.