“Brothers-in-Arms” by Jack Lewis Baillot
My rating: 4.5 out of 5 Stars
Unknown Release Date
About the Book:
Childhood friends, Japhet Buchanan and Franz Kappel, have grown up together and are closer than brothers.
The world they have always known is changing.
When disaster strikes close to home Franz and Japhet make a choice to enter Berlin, determined to gather needed information to get their families out of Germany alive.
There is one problem.
Japhet is a Jew. Even with the world telling him and Franz they shouldn’t be friends Japhet has always believed Franz would never leave him.
But then Franz joins the Nazis.
Their friendship is soon put to the test as both battle to escape the place they called home and the people who would kill them if their secrets were ever discovered.
Where do I begin? This book was fantastic. Why was it fantastic? Because it was real, it was deep, it was heart-wrenching. In short, it was so good! When I received this book in the mail after winning it in Jack’s give-away, I was astounded at the sheer-length of it. It’s huge! But it needed every page, and none of it felt like it lasted too long. It was incredibly hard to put down, and I was thinking about when I wasn’t reading it.
The friendship between Franz and Japhet was nothing short of amazing and just…ah! I loved it. It was so sweet, so innocent, so real. And yet, it made it that much harder when their friendship was strained for a while. But it still lasted. They were still the best friends they were when they were boys. No harsh war, cruelties, or beatings could tear that away from them, and I loved that.
The characters were all so well-constructed, and believable. I don’t know if I could choose just one favourite, because I became VERY attached to a few. Especially Franz and Japhet, but I also liked Sam Winters, and Jimmy’s friend Danny, and Odis – we can’t forget Odis.
There were characters you absolutely hated. Strongly. But as terrible as they were, they were required in the story to make it what it was and is.
This book, though heart-wrenching to its fullest, was engaging – it was not one you slogged through at all. You kept reading even when your eyes are sore. Knowing the subject, at first I was worried it would be hard to read – a bit ‘advanced’ but it wasn’t. Somehow, it was deep, and gritty, and painful, and amazing, without being hard to read.
My favourite aspect of the book though, was probably the dedication Franz had towards Japhet and he towards Franz. “I will always catch you” – Franz Kappel. Makes you just…ahhh!
And I have to say something about the ending. I don’t want to give anything away, but can I tell you how relieved I was at the end??? I was SOO worried, and SOO tense. But it ended really, really good. (I think Jack should put one of those things in the front of her book – “Dear Reader: don’t worry, it ends happily” :D). But yes, I got so involved in this book, and I am so glad it can sit proudly on my shelf for me to return to many times.
There was a fairly significant faith-strand, but sometimes it was missing. It is because of this reason that I rated it 4.5 stars instead of a full five, because I would have liked to see a stronger tie to God in it. I think Jack handled it well for the most part, really. I am not saying writing a book like this would be easy – no – but there were a couple of instinces where I felt it really needed God. For example, there was a part where Japhet was struggling (won’t go into detail there) and he kept calling out for Franz to save him – I was hoping that he would come to realize more strongly than he did that only God can save him, not man. But still, the moment Franz and Japhet re-found God was powerful.
So yep. I loved this book. I cannot wait till Jack publishes it because everyone needs to read it. *Nods*.
*I received this book in a give-away – I was not required to post a review