Recollections: Reviews by a Book Lover


Review: The Girl in the Blue Coat

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I received an advance reading copy of the Girl in the Blue Coat by Monica Hesse from the publisher.

I’ll start off by saying that World War II historical fiction is one of my favorite genres. With that said I really enjoyed Girl in the Blue Coat.  It is well researched and thought provoking.

There is so much going on in this novel.  Amsterdam has been taken over by the Nazis.  Hanneke (the main character) is working for a funeral home, while also working in black market trades.  She is grieving the death of her boyfriend, while struggling to provide for her family.  Then one day Hanneke is asked to find a missing girl who is Jewish.  Hanneke has always felt her black market work was her way of rebelling against the Nazis, but she isn’t sure she wants to take on something that will be even more dangerous.  Soon she is thrust into the world of the underground resistance, discovering just how ugly Hitler’s war machine is, all while trying to find a young girl before it is too late.

This book has a lot going for it.  It’s part mystery. It deals with grief, and finding the courage to do the right thing.  Many people risked their lives during WWII to help in resistance work.  It was often difficult to know who could be trusted, and even more difficult to make the tough decisions about what chances the resistance could and couldn’t take when it came down to it.  Hanneke doesn’t want to get involved with the resistance, all she wants to do is find Mirjam.  The resistance wants Hanneke’s help in finding hard to find goods to help feed people in hiding.  They will help Hanneke but not at the cost of putting anyone else involved in the resistance in harms way. And Hanneke isn’t sure how much she wants to get involved in the resistance because she is the only one her parents have to take care of them. The more Hanneke learns about what the Nazis are really doing the more she understands  what is truly at stake.

I was up late reading this book every night wanting to know if Hanneke would succeed and at what price.

This book goes on sale April 2016, and if you love World War II historical fiction as much as I do then it needs to be on your must read list.  It is a beautifully written story about love, grief, war, and redemption.

 

 

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Review: Code Name Verity

Picture from GoodReads.com

Picture from GoodReads.com

Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

What it’s about: I have two weeks. You’ll shoot me at the end no matter what I do.

That’s what you do to enemy agents. It’s what we do to enemy agents. But I look at all the dark and twisted roads ahead and cooperation is the easy way out. Possibly the only way out for a girl caught red-handed doing dirty work like mine — and I will do anything, anything, to avoid SS-Hauptsturmführer von Linden interrogating me again.

He has said that I can have as much paper as I need. All I have to do is cough up everything I can remember about the British War Effort. And I’m going to. But the story of how I came to be here starts with my friend Maddie. She is the pilot who flew me into France — an Allied Invasion of Two.

We are a sensational team. (Summary from goodreads.com)

What I thought: I loved this book. I’ll start off by admitting I like historical fiction which takes place during World War II, so I may be biased. I took a class in college called ‘Women in War’ so I love reading about the jobs women took during wartime.

After reading this book you feel like you know the two girls. You learn all about their friendship through her confession to the Nazis. I will admit I cried several times. This is a book about World War II and women’s roles in wartime, but more importantly it is a book about friendship. It’s about protecting your friend no matter what it takes.

I like that the book is split into two parts. It lets you hear both girls’ sides of the story, so you have all the pieces in the end. I don’t want to say too much about the book because I don’t want to ruin it. This is the kind of book you need to experience yourself. For me these characters came to life; I recommend this book wholeheartedly.


Book Trailer

I received a lot of books for Christmas 🙂 so rather than taking books out from work, I’ve decided to catch up on what I own.

Here is the trailer for Code Name Verity by Wein which I’m currently reading: