3.5 stars. Longer review to come... It's been too long to expand this review. My thoughts below succinctly express my thoughts on this novel.
Four stars for the last few chapters that "oonched" up the emotional impact, and three stars for Josephine's grandmother, Nona, who I disliked at the novel's beginning, and I continued to dislike at the end. Like all readers, I bring my emotional baggage with me, and Nona is too much like my own grandmother, who was also emotionally abusive to my mother. Just couldn't find the empathy for the woman. At one point, Nona whines to Josephine, "Some day you'll understand." And I thought, "No, Nona, she might not. I don't and I'm a hella lot closer to your age than Josephine's."
This novel suffers from the fact that I read the magnificent Jellicoe Road, first. It's well-written, but lacks the punch-in-the-gut power of Jellico Road.