Publication Date: 6 February 2018
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Copy from Netgalley.com and Berkley
“Life is wonderful and beautiful but oh, how hard it can be.”
The year of 1918 is a year that will stand out in history for a long time to come. Reading this novel brings many of those vivid historical elements to the forefront of our minds. The story encompasses the Spanish Flu epidemic, WWI, and prohibition.
The story begins in January of 1918 in rural Pennsylvania and quickly shifts to the city of Philadelphia when the Bright family makes a life changing move. Thomas, Pauline, and their three daughters, Evie, Maggie, and Willa move in with Uncle Fred and begin to rearrange their lives to accommodate city living.
This first year in the city brings unbelievable change to the family. Thomas changes occupations from tobacco farmer to undertaker. Every member of the Bright family is impacted in a major way as a result of the move, the flu epidemic, and the war. The book follows the family through the difficult year of 1918 and the following seven years narrated by various members of the family, most frequently the girls.
This is a very compelling story narrated beautifully from differing points of view. The book weaves loss, love, and the ethics of right and wrong in difficult situations throughout its pages. A well written deep novel that definitely pulled this reader right into the story! I definitely recommend this book for lovers of historical fiction.
I received this book free from Berkley and Netgalley. I was not required to write a positive review. The above thoughts and opinions I have expressed are wholly my own.
Susan’s Facebook Page
Publication Date: June 2017
Publisher: Bethany House
ARC copy from Bethany House and Netgalley.com
What could possibly motivate a beautiful young woman to risk her life spying for a secret underground group that specialized in aiding the Allies and obstructing the enemy during WWI? The reasons were many and complex; survival, guilt, and hope. Evelyn (Eve) Marche played a dangerous game with the enemy, nursing them by day and serving them food and drinks at night, while gathering their information continuously in order to aid La Dame Blanche in 1917 in Brussels.
After the alleged death of Simon Forrester, her RAF pilot husband of less than a month, Eve sets off for Belgium to join her mother and siblings. Events conspire to add to Eve’s already tumultuous life after arriving in Belgium and she risks everything to aid her people and alleviate her own personal guilt.
This novel is an outstanding fiction story inspired by real people and events from this time period in history. Kate Breslin explores espionage during WWI, women and their varying roles during the war, and survivor’s guilt as well as many other complex topics.
A strong message of faith and the difficulties of holding on to one’s faith during a time of trials weaves a chord throughout the story. A wonderful read for people who enjoy inspirational historical fiction or any reader of historical fiction!
I received this book free from Bethany House Publishers and Netgalley.com. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.
Series: Of Love and War Series
Publication Date: December 2014
Publisher: Hatchette Book Group
ARC from Netgalley.com and Hatchette Book Group
Hope Rising is the second novel in this series, and it is also set in 1918 during World War I. This story begins in France and narrates the story of Corporal Joel Campbell whom we met briefly in the first novel and Evelyn Gray, a serious young nurse serving in the Army Nurse Corps. Joel is a handsome, honest young soldier serving in the American Expeditionary Force (AEF) in France.
The storyline follows Nurse Gray’s dedication to the wounded and dying men of WWI as she learns of the loss of her fiancé, Ralph. Joel Campbell, seriously wounded in obvious and not so obvious ways, delivers the news to Evelyn Gray as he struggles with overwhelming guilt. Evelyn asks Joel to assist her through a difficult situation. The only problem is that the solution requires Joel and Evelyn to get married.
The historical detail in the novel is excellent. Be sure and read the Author’s Note prior to starting the story. Great insight into the historical aspects of the story! Her characters come alive as they develop and evolve in the story. The secondary characters are also very engaging in this novel. Although they do not have as large a role as Evelyn and Joel, the reader will become attached to Louis, a young French orphan, and the kindly Dr. Dupont at St. Vincent’s.
Read this appealing story and find out what happens to Joel and Evelyn and how they solve their devastating problem with a solution that benefits many. Readers of historical fiction, specifically World War era stories, will enjoy this novel. The inspirational theme is light, but the message of hope will touch the reader. I can’t wait to read A Hope Remembered, Book 3, coming in March of 2015.
This ARC copy was received from Hatchette Publishing Group and Netgalley.com in exchange for an honest review. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.