Posted in blog tour, Books

“A Question of Courage” Blog Tour by Jesseca Wheaton

AQoC Blog tour image

“A Question of Courage” by Jesseca Wheaton

Book Two of the Questions of War series

 

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A man. A decision. A destiny.
Rafe Sullivan never imagined the war would come to his doorstep. But when Pearl Harbor is attacked and America’s focus suddenly shifts to the pacific, he finds he can’t ignore the problem anymore.
Leaving the life he loves behind, he joins up to do what he does best. Fly.
Yet, nothing could have prepared him for the horrors of war, and the struggle that is going on in his own heart. As an outstanding navy pilot, he is stationed on one of the few Pacific carriers. But could God be calling him to step out in faith, and go beyond the call of duty?
Lily Wilson gives her all to help the hurting community around her. With the bombing of Pearl Harbor, the war is brought home to many American families. And as a nurse, she longs to be able to relive some of the suffering. Yet, her own grief is still fresh in her heart, and though she’s made the decision to get on with her life, she can’t seem to leave the past behind. When healing at last comes, the guard she placed around her heart slowly begins to crumble.
But when she receives the news she hoped she would never again hear, can she trust that God’s plan is always right?
Arthur Warrington saw the Navy as an escape from the life he left behind. And it seems good for him. He is able to forge new friendships and distance himself from his past. But when his best friend makes a decision that rocks his world, he is left grappling with the question: what is true courage?
Three lives. One War. And a search for the Courage to go on.

 

About the Author:

Author Picture

Jesseca is a daughter, sister, and a child of God. Her days are spent reading, cooking, spending time with siblings, or playing piano. And writing, of course! At an early age words fascinated her, and her love for the printed page has only grown. She lives with her parents and seven siblings in the sunny state of Kansas, and she’s convinced there’s no place like home.

 

 

Giveaway!

 

AQoC Giveaway Image 2

 

!!!Click on the image to enter, or Enter HERE. !!!

 

AQoC Giveaway image 1

Posted in 1940's, Book reviews

Book Review: “Canteen Dreams” by Cara Putman

(Click on the image to go to its amazon page)

 

“Canteen Dreams” by Cara Putman

Book One in the Cornhusker Dreams Series

Review copy from author

My Rating: 4.5 out of 5 Stars

 

About the Book:

A heartwarming WWII love story.
In the aftermath of Pearl Harbor, Nebraska schoolteacher Audrey Stone wants to support the war effort in any way she can. When her community starts a canteen at the train station, Audrey spends nearly every spare moment there, offering food and kindness to the soldiers passing through. She never expected to fall for a local boy…or face the challenges of budding love in the face of war.

Rancher Willard Johnson admires Audrey’s passionate nature, but when his brother is killed in action, he feels he must avenge by enlisting himself. His father insists he stay, but Willard knows he must go. Reality intrudes, and he never expected the jealousy he experiences when he sees those in uniform.

Can Willard’s budding relationship with Audrey weather the storms of war? Or will one of the other soldiers at the canteen steal her heart?

 

My Thoughts:

 

It’s been a while since I read a story set during WWII, so it was nice to get back into that setting/genre with “Canteen Dreams”. Very well written, with a captivating story line. And the faith-strand was quite excellent, weaving in sound truths that the characters learned. I thought that was beautiful. :)
“Canteen Dreams” was a very sweet story, with real characters, and real lessons. And the romance was believable, and pretty cute. ^.^ Not all simple and roses, but definitely good.
It was interesting to see how the War affected a smaller town, and what they did to pitch in.
If you’re a fan of WWII fictions, or even just good, sweet stories, be sure to pick up a copy of “Canteen Dreams”. :)
Posted in 1940's, cover reveal

Cover Reveal! “A Question of Courage” by Jesseca Wheaton

Hello! Today I am taking part in a cover reveal! Isn’t that exciting? I love seeing book covers. :) So without further ado, let’s see this one!!

 

…………

 

………..

 

Displaying A Question of Courage Cover.jpg

 

About the Book:

 

A man. A decision. A destiny. 

Rafe Sullivan never imagined the war would come to his doorstep. But when Pearl Harbor is attacked and America’s focus suddenly shifts to the pacific, he finds he can’t ignore the problem anymore. 
Leaving the life he loves behind, he joins up to do what he does best. Fly. 
Yet, nothing could have prepared him for the horrors of war, and the struggle that is going on in his own heart. As an outstanding navy pilot, he is stationed on one of the few Pacific carriers. But could God be calling him to step out in faith, and go beyond the call of duty? 

Lily Wilson gives her all to help the hurting community around her. With the bombing of Pearl Harbor, the war is brought home to many American families. And as a nurse, she longs to be able to relive some of the suffering. Yet, her own grief is still fresh in her heart, and though she’s made the decision to get on with her life, she can’t seem to leave the past behind. When healing at last comes, the guard she placed around her heart slowly begins to crumble. 
But when she receives the news she hoped she would never again hear, can she trust that God’s plan is always right?

Arthur Warrington saw the Navy as an escape from the life he left behind. And it seems good for him. He is able to forge new friendships and distance himself from his past. But when his best friend makes a decision that rocks his world, he is left grappling with the question: what is true courage? 

Three lives. One War. And a search for the Courage to go on.

 

Add it on Goodreads

 

 

About the Author:

Jesseca WheatonJesseca is a 19-year old daughter, sister, and a child of God. Her days are spent reading, cooking, spending time with siblings, or playing piano.  And writing, of course! At an early age words fascinated her, and her love for the printed page has only grown. She lives with her parents and seven siblings in the sunny state of Kansas, and she’s convinced there’s no place like home. Though, being in the sky is pretty awesome, too.

Website~Blog~Amazon~Goodreads~GooglePlus~Pinterest~Instagram

Posted in 1940's, Author Interview, blog tour, Books

Book and Character Spotlight: “Brothers-in-Arms” by Jack Lewis Baillot

Today I am excited to share about the upcoming release of Jack Lewis Baillot’s amazing book, “Brothers-in-Arms”!! I really am happy for this release! I have read (review) this book previously and fell absolutely in love. I’m looking forward to reading this updated version too!

In addition to spotlighting this book, I am also featuring one of the characters – Japhet Buchanan. So read on to hear more about the book and to have Jack introduce Japhet to us!

 

 

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Release Date: May 31st

Synopsis:

Can a Jew and a Nazi survive Hitler’s Germany?

Franz Kappel and Japhet Buchanan never expected their friendship to be tested by the Third Reich. Friends from early childhood, the boys form an inseparable, brotherly bond. Growing up in a little German village, they escape most of the struggles of war until the day Japhet is banished from school for being a Jew, and later has a rib broken when other village boys beat him up. Franz learns he is putting himself in danger for spending so much time with Japhet but continues to stand up for his Jewish friend even at the risk to himself. Then one day their lives are shattered when they see first-hand that the price of being a Jew is dangerously high. 

With the war now on their doorsteps, Franz and Japhet come up with a desperate plan to save their families and get them out of Germany alive. Leaving behind the lives they’ve always known, they move into Berlin with nothing to protect them but forged papers and each other. Convinced their friendship can keep them going, the boys try and make a new life for themselves while trying to keep their true identities and Japhet’s heritage a secret. Taking his best friend’s safety upon himself, Franz joins the Nazis in an attempt to get valuable information. At the same time, Japhet joins the Jewish Resistance, neither friend telling the other of their new occupations.

With everyone in their world telling them a Nazi and a Jew can’t be friends, it is only a matter of time before they believe all the lies themselves, until neither is certain if they are fighting against a race of people or fighting for their homeland. Somehow they have to survive the horrors of World War II, even when all of Germany seems to be against them.

Character Spotlight: Japhet Buchanan

Raechel has asked to do a character spotlight during my blog tour, and she chose Japhet Buchanan as her character. I have to admit, I was very happy to get to write a spotlight for him. The moment he showed up and presented his story to me, years and years ago, I fell in love with him. (He arrived before Franz. I didn’t know it would also be Franz’s story until I started it.)

I wanted to write a story set in Germany during WWII. I read a book which started it, a book which showed a side of the WWII story my history books never spoke of. It was about a small group of Germans who fought the Nazis and tried to stop Hitler’s slaughter of babies with deformities.
Japhet showed up about this time. He didn’t tell me his name, he told me nothing really, just that he was a German, wasn’t a Nazi, had a story to be told, and he had a best friend. I ignored him because I didn’t want to write a WWII story, I knew it would be painful and I wasn’t ready for it.
Years later Japhet returned, this time with a fuller back story and big brown eyes which he used to charm me. He told me he had a story he knew I’d love to write and he wouldn’t go away even when I threw boots at his head. Then he took it one step further and started to tell me his story. A few weeks passed, and the next thing I knew I was sobbing in front of my computer as I wrote the story down.
I am attached to all my characters, but some have very special places in my heart. Japhet Buchanan is one of them, and I’m not even sure I really understand why. I just know I love him.
To give you a quick overview of who he is…
Japhet Josef Buchanan is the youngest of four. He has three older sisters. His family is Jewish and they live in a little German village where his family is well liked – until trouble starts.
Japhet has an out going personality. There are few people who meet him who don’t like him. He’s fun, light-hearted, and gets along with almost everyone. (This is his early history, of course things change.)
When he grows up Japhet has plans to become an artist. He loves to draw, mostly scenery pictures and animals. He’s not so good at drawing people, but his landscapes are stunning. Mostly though, Japhet just has fun getting into trouble with his best friend, Franz Kappel.

In spite of having a fun personality, Japhet is also loyal to his family. He has a fighting spirit and a hidden temper which smolders rather than explodes. When he’s upset, angry, or scared he keeps it all hidden away inside and lets it simmer. He won’t tell anyone his fears unless he is pushed hard enough to bring them up. He’d rather make people laugh than talk about anything serious. He’d also do anything to keep his family safe.

Japhet was a hard character for me to work with, and also really easy. I didn’t really get why I felt this way until the final edit and I realized how much of a change Japhet goes through in the book. (Then I had another crying moment.) He goes through so much that by the end of the book he is not the same boy at the beginning, and it wasn’t fun to see, but it also gave me a chance to do a complete character arch. I don’t think I’ve ever taken characters as low as Japhet and Franz, and for being an Author, it was almost fun to stretch myself to new limits. Painful, agonizing, but also kind of fun. (What can I say, Authors are weird beings.)
And…I guess there he is. Somewhat slightly summed up. I hope readers will be drawn into his and Franz’s story the same way I was and come to love them as much as I do. 

 

 

 

Thanks so much, Jack, for telling us about Japhet! And congratulations on this fantastic book release!!

 

 

(No idea why, but her photo won’t show up here no matter how many times I try or try to it differently…Sorry!)

 

Author Bio:

Jack is one of those strange people who calls herself an Author. She spends a lot of her time writing and even less time editing. She likes to write about friendships which is partly how Brothers-in-Arms came to be. More than ten years in the making, this is the book she dreaded the most writing, but which also has the most meaning for her.

When Jack isn’t writing, which doesn’t happen too often, she keeps busy with various other hobbies – such as reading, playing the bagpipes to the dread of her neighbors, and drinking tea – which might not be considered a hobby by most but which should be.

She lives in a cabin in the woods with her dog and a library which isn’t quite equal to Prince Adam’s but will be, given enough time and a secret doorway.

 

Contact Info:

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/JackLBaillot

Twitter – https://twitter.com/JackLBaillot

Goodreads –  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5862775.Jack_Lewis_Baillot

Blog – http://www.jacklewisbaillot.com/  

 

Goodreads link –  https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/24703965-brothers-in-arms

Brothers-in-Arms Pintrest Page – https://www.pinterest.com/jackbaillot/brothers-in-arms/

Posted in 1940's, Book reviews, Litfuse, Revell Reads

Book Review: “Anchor in the Storm” by Sarah Sundin

 

“Anchor in the Storm” by Sarah Sundin

Book Two in the Waves of Freedom Series

WWII Historical Fiction

Review copy source: Litfuse/Revell

My Rating: 4.5 out of 5 Stars

 

About the book:

One Plucky Female Pharmacist + One High-Society Naval Officer = Romance–and Danger

For plucky Lillian Avery, America’s entry into World War Ii means a chance to prove herself as a pharmacist in Boston. The challenges of her new job energize her. But society boy Ensign Archer Vandenberg’s attentions only annoy–even if he is her brother’s best friend.

During the darkest days of the war, Arch’s destroyer hunts German U-boats in vain as the submarines sink dozens of merchant ships along the East Coast. Still shaken by battles at sea, Arch notices his men also struggle with their nerves–and with drowsiness. Could there be a link to the large prescriptions for sedatives Lillian has filled? The two work together to answer that question, but can Arch ever earn Lillian’s trust and affection?

Sarah Sundin brings World War Ii to life, offering readers an intense experience they won’t soon forget.

 

 

My Thoughts:

Sarah Sundin never disappoints. :) “Anchor in the Storm” was another fantastic book, with a great plot and fantastic characters. There was also a bit of mystery in it which was fun to follow along with!
Lillian Avery was a really well-rounded character; unique too, and still relatable. And Arch was charming as well, and with his own flaws – I do really appreciate flawed characters. :)
The faith strand was good, and consistent, which was lovely – Christ is our Anchor!
The struggles and trials they went through were very real, and the background pain was believable and came across well.
“Jesus is you anchor, your hope in any storm, you sure refuge.” (Page 28)
And I must admit, I loved the romance – it was sweet and I really wanted the two together. Arch was the perfect gentlemen – seriously, he was just so thoughtful and sweet.
“Yet she was worth the effort” (Page 144)
There was a grandmotherly character in this book who had a great influence on Lillian, and helped her to open her heart, which was so nice – we all need someone to remind us! Because it is hard, and it does sometimes hurt, but God desires an open heart.
“Oh, sweet girl. You may be able to hide your feelings from people, but you can never hide them from the Lord.” (Page 67)
“Now you’ve experienced great love. Now you’ve suffered great loss. Now your heart is truly open” Lillian pressed her free hand to her chest. Why did an open heart have to hurt so much?” (Page 346)
There were just a couple of instances of their romance that I didn’t care for fully – it wasn’t horrible, but sometimes it seemed a little rushed (or rather, happened quickly once it did happen), and there were a lot of kisses, and

*** SPOILER***  I was a little bummed when there had to be the typical turmoil stretch in their relationship. I know that they don’t want it to seem too perfect all of the time, but it just seemed…too much in the ‘norm’. ***END OF SPOILER***

But yes, I enjoyed this book very well, and look forward to the next! Sarah Sundin’s writing is spectacular, with much talent, and always so captivating!
*I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publishers (Revell) and Litfuse in exchange for my honest review, which I have given.

In a time of sacrifice, what price can one put on true love? Pharmacist Lillian Avery and Ensign Archer Vandenberg are about to find out in Sarah Sundin’s new book, Anchor in the Storm. During the darkest days of the war, Arch’s destroyer hunts German U-boats in vain as the submarines sink dozens of merchant ships along the East Coast. Still shaken by battles at sea, Arch notices his men also struggle with their nerves—and with drowsiness. Could there be a link to the large prescriptions Lillian has been filling? As the danger rises on both land and sea, the two must work together to answer that question. But can Arch ever earn Lillian’s trust and affection?

Celebrate the release of Sarah’s Anchor in the Storm by entering to win her All Hands on Deck Prize Pack!

anchor in the storm - 400 

One grand prize winner will receive:

  • A signed copy of Anchor in the Storm
  • Nautical tote bag lined with anchor fabric
  • Anchor necklace made from copper reclaimed from the USS Constitution in Boston during restoration
  • 365 Devotions for Hope by Karen Whiting
  • Shine: Nautical Inspirational Adult Coloring Book
  • “Hope Anchors the Soul” journal
  • Set of two nautical tea towels
LF AIS full group 2 

Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry! The giveaway ends on June 8th. The winner will be announced June 9th on Sarah’s blog.

anchor in the storm - banner
Posted in Book reviews, Books, lists, Pinterest, reading, Tessa Afshar, update

April Book Recap

Happy May First!

And first, I’d like to wish my dearest friend, Kenzie, a very Happy Birthday!!! Love you, Ken!! <3

 

FREE printable book wall art - or use it for filling in the titles of books you read(pic via Pinterest)

 

I’ve been keeping track of what books I receive in the mail and what books I read through the month, so I thought it might be fun to share! If I have already written and posted the review for each book, I will link to it in the title. :)

 

During the month of April, this was my Book News:

Finished “Like Never Before” by Melissa Tagg (LOVED it) Contemporary Romance

Read:

“A Daring Sacrifice” by Jody Hedlund – but I didn’t finish, only skimmed because I was disappointed in it. Medieval/fantasy fiction

 

“The Prophetess” by Jill Eileen Smith – I skimmed this one too towards the end because of the content. Biblical Fiction

 

“Family Lies, Deadly Ties” by J.A.Marx – I adored this book, and am so very excited about it! It releases on May 13th. Can’t wait to share more about it!! Contemporary/Human-trafficking fiction

 

“Counted with the Stars” by Connilyn Cossette – Very good! I will be posting my review soon. :) Biblical Fiction

 

“The Beautiful Pretender” by Melanie Dickerson – Really enjoyed this one! Will also post my review of it soon. :) Medieval/Historical Fiction

 

And I started “Anchor in the Storm” by Sarah Sundin, which I am enjoying! WII Fiction

 

Favourite Book of April: Hard to choose between the few excellent ones…but I’d have to say “Family Lies, Deadly Ties” by J.A. Marx. So good. :)

 

This month, I plan to read “Land of Silence” by Tessa Afshar (which releases TODAY!!! <3), “Dawn at Emberwilde” by Sarah E. Ladd, and we’ll see what else! :)

I’ve also got a couple blog posts coming soon…a Tag and some book reviews. :)

Do you keep track of the books you read each month?

 

Posted in 1940's, Book reviews, Fiction Guild, Spiritual beliefs

Fiction Guild Book Review: “The Girl from the Train” by Irma Joubert

“The Girl from the Train” by Irma Joubert

Review copy source: Fiction Guild

Releases November 3rd, 2015

My rating: 2.5 out of 5 Stars

 

About the Book:

Six-year-old Gretl Schmidt is on a train bound for Auschwitz. Jakób Kowalski is planting a bomb on the tracks.

As World War II draws to a close, Jakób fights with the Polish resistance against the crushing forces of Germany and Russia. They mean to destroy a German troop transport, but Gretl’s unscheduled train reaches the bomb first.

Gretl is the only survivor. Though spared from the concentration camp, the orphaned German Jew finds herself lost in a country hostile to her people. When Jakób discovers her, guilt and fatherly compassion prompt him to take her home. For three years, the young man and little girl form a bond over the secrets they must hide from his Catholic family.

But she can’t stay with him forever. Jakób sends Gretl to South Africa, where German war orphans are promised bright futures with adoptive Protestant families—so long as Gretl’s Jewish roots, Catholic education, and connections to communist Poland are never discovered.

Separated by continents, politics, religion, language, and years, Jakób and Gretl will likely never see each other again. But the events they have both survived and their belief that the human spirit can triumph over the ravages of war have formed a bond of love that no circumstances can overcome.

My Thoughts:

 

This book had an interesting concept, and the plot was definitely interesting. I liked the writing style for the most part, but there was a lot of political-ness that I didn’t quite understand. It was kind of slow for me to get through, especially in the beginning/middle. The end started to speed up a bit, and was more able to capture my attention, but it still didn’t ‘fill me’.
I’ll start with what I liked; there were definitely parts in this book that I enjoyed. I liked the characters – Gretjie and Jakob were very likeable characters! Gretjie’s father was explaining to her how we grow in trials, it was really cool because he used the refining of silver as an example, and he said that God refines us – He knows how long to leave us in the fire, until He can see His image in us. The book explained it way better, but it really was an amazing scene!
While I didn’t hate this book, I did have some concerns:
The romance was…hard to ingest. At times it seemed lovely, but I think it caused more of a stumbling block than a dreamy-romance kind of thing for me. I don’t read a ton of romances, but I don’t mind some romance in books, as long as it is God-centered and clean. The purpose of romance in books should always be to keep God center stage and point back to Him. Keeping it innocent. And I just personally didn’t feel like that occurred much in “The Girl on the Train” – at least for me. Oh it was an interesting romance, to be sure – not the typical story. But after I finished the book, I just didn’t feel…I don’t know; “right”? This book was not building me up in the faith, and for that reason I couldn’t love it.
The romance in itself was probably typical of many books, but it leaves a girl wanting – yearning for what isn’t. I also didn’t care for the kissing. That is an age-old complaint for me in books – kissing before marriage. I know there are many views on this, but for my personal convictions I feel kissing should be saved for marriage. We are to keep ourselves for our spouses, and I think that means saving our kisses too. In the world today, kisses are just nothing. They are casual, they are used often. But they are sacred.
And I want books to encourage that – to encourage romance even after marriage. They portray the fact that bubbly romance can only occur before marriage – but that’s not true! If we save ourselves and enter into God’s covenant of marriage, He will bless us, and of course the romance will be sweeter, if we save ourselves.
I’m going off on a tangent now, aren’t I? :) Those were just my thoughts after finishing this book.
I guess my biggest ‘concern’ and possibly ‘turn-off’ from the book was how the romance left me feeling, and the vast amount of political facts which just didn’t register in my mind.
So, to end, there were interesting aspects of this book, and many may love it – it just wasn’t totally for me.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publishers and Fiction Guild in exchange for my honest review which I have given.

Posted in Books, reading, update

Some September Reads

September books 2015 (2)

 

Hello readers!

I thought that perhaps today I’d show a picture of some of my September Reads. From the picture, it doesn’t look too big, but seeing that September is already half over and I actually forgot a couple of my ‘to-read’ books, it’s big enough for me! In case you can’t really tell the titles from the picture, I’m reading/going to read:

“All Our Empty Places” by Alicia G. Ruggieri – I am actually almost done with this one and it is FANTASTIC! I am so excited for this new release of Alicia’s. For anyone that read the first book in this series, “The Fragrance of Geraniums”, you definitely won’t want to miss this one! And if you haven’t read either, I highly recommend it! You’ll hear more about “All Our Empty Places” soon enough, when I share my review and spotlight the release!

“The Girl From the Train” by Irma Joubert – I started this one at the beginning of September, but it has been kind of slow for me to get through. I set it down momentarily, to read “All Our Empty Places” but I will be picking it back up shortly. :)

“Bathsheba: Reluctant Beauty” by Angela Hunt – I am looking forward to this Biblical fiction; I haven’t read any of Hunt’s work before and so this will be a great chance to do so. The cover is beautiful.

“Hiding Places” by Erin Healy – Again, I haven’t read anything by this author, but I am looking forward to it. It’s a mystery/suspense novel, so it should be interesting!

 

And then I’m also beta-reading a couple short novella’s not pictured here. :)

I’m not sure if I’ll be able to get them all read before October First, but I am certainly going to try! What are you reading?

Posted in 1940's, Book reviews, Books, Litfuse

Litfuse Book Review: Through Waters Deep by Sarah Sundin

 

(Click image to go directly to book on Amazon)

 

Through Waters Deep” by Sarah Sundin

#1 in Waves of Freedom Series

WWII Fiction

Review copy source: Litfuse

My rating: 4.5 out of 5 Stars

 

About the Book:

It is 1941 and America teeters on the brink of war. Outgoing naval officer Ensign Jim Avery escorts British convoys across the North Atlantic in a brand-new destroyer, the USS Atwood. Back on shore, Boston Navy Yard secretary Mary Stirling does her work quietly and efficiently, happy to be out of the limelight. Yet, despite her reserved nature, she never could back down from a challenge. When evidence of sabotage on the Atwood is found, Jim and Mary must work together to uncover the culprit. A bewildering maze of suspects emerges, and Mary is dismayed to find that even someone close to her is under suspicion. With the increasing pressure, Jim and Mary find that many new challenges–and dangers–await them.

Sarah Sundin takes readers to the tense months before the US entered WWII. Readers will encounter German U-boats and torpedoes, along with the explosive power of true love, in this hopeful and romantic story.

My Thoughts:

I was so excited to read this book – so excited! :D After reading “A Distant Melody” by Sarah Sundin, I was quite hooked on her writing. And “Through Waters Deep” didn’t disappoint. While it didn’t top “A Distant Melody” for me (not much can! Hehe), it was still very satisfactory.

I loved the main characters, Mary and Jim. I related to Mary in her quiet, calm manner, and felt deeply for her in her struggles. And Jim was a dashing hero. ;) He had his own struggles too, and I appreciate that he and Mary shared their struggles and burdens with each-other, each growing in the Lord as well.

There were some great side characters – I’m really looking forward to the next book involving Arch and Lillian! Yay! Mary and Jim will remain my favourites, but I know they will run a close second. However, I did not care for Quintessa at all. She bugged me and I felt like Mary saw herself too indebted to her – it wasn’t an even-sided friendship, if that makes sense. Though, I am expecting Quintessa to have a more favourable story in the third book of this series. :)

The plot was engaging and the mystery gripping! I must say, I was pleased to find out the one I suspected was the culprit in the end! =D Following mystery stories are fun, and I was relieved that this was a ‘clean’ one, without murders, etc. as many mysteries are.

There were several ‘happy’ parts in this book that just made me melt with happiness. :D So many sweet parts and feelings. That being said, I think there were more ‘turmoil’ parts than necessary…I know many like the riveting, edge-of-your-seat plots, and while this was that in a good way definitely, it also had some frustrating parts that I could’ve done without. ^.^ But at least it all ends happily and how we want!! I do like having that guarantee in stories.

The faith strand was there, and I was glad for that. I loved the theme of Nehemiah to it, and how Jim and Mary relied on God for their strength! Very cool. I loved that they each prayed beforehand about things instead of charging forward. A good reminder for all of us, myself definitely included!

I was impressed with how thorough Sarah Sundin’s research was and how lovely it was displayed in this book. Very authentic and still easy-to-read. I appreciate that! I also appreciate that there weren’t too many ‘battle intensive’ parts – it was handled with great care, and I liked that. I get very emotionally invested in books, and so it’s nice not to get pulled too far down when the scenes get overwhelming; thankfully, as I said, this book wasn’t that way. It was perfect in that aspect.

There is so much I could say about this book – the setting, the themes, the interactions. But I’m afraid my review would be quite lengthy! :)

All in all, I enjoyed this read for sure! Looking forward to more. :)

*I received a complimentary copy of this book from Litfuse and the Publishers in exchange for my honest review which I have given.

 

Sarah Sundin through waters deep image

 

Posted in 1940's, Book reviews, Books

Book Review: “Brothers-in-Arms” by Jack Lewis Baillot

brothersinarms cover

 

“Brothers-in-Arms” by Jack Lewis Baillot

WWII fiction

My rating: 4.5 out of 5 Stars

Unknown Release Date

 

 

 

 

About the Book:

Nazi Germany.

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.

 

My Thoughts:

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