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Sadie’s Wars by Rosemary Noble: bittersweet, and beautifully written

Synopsis

An astonishing tale, spanning continents, where truth is stranger than fiction. This historical saga of an extraordinary Australian pioneer family continues into a new generation.

Sadie is brought-up amongst the vineyards of the Yarra Valley while her work-obsessed father reaps riches from the boom years before the Great War.

With post-war depression looming, Sadie’s only option is to flee from her disastrous marriage, seeking refuge in Cleethorpes, a small seaside town in northern England.

Years later, when her sons are in RAF Bomber Command, she receives a letter from her long-lost brother which forces her to confront the past and her part in her family’s downfall.

Can old wounds be healed?
Will she find new love?
Will this second war destroy everyone she saved?

 

My review

This is a truly bittersweet novel. Sadie, our heroine, is the mother of three sons, all of whom are fighting in the Second World War. With her heart in tatters with worry about them, she still finds the strength to make her own contribution to the war effort, and to find some love for herself.

The author created the tense atmosphere beautifully. I can only imagine how truly dreadful it must have been for the women of that generation to be constantly wondering if their children were still alive as the war dragged on and on. Grabbing every precious second with them when they’re on leave becomes Sadie’s prime concern.

We travel in time here and there back to relevant moments of Sadie’s childhood and early adulthood. This is nicely done and isn’t intrusive. Instead, we have two beautifully told storylines to enjoy.

We don’t want to see Sadie suffer, but given the war setting it’s inevitable she will. Yet she finds new strength to deal with the aftermath of the war, and even has the chance to try and rebuild her life and enjoy some happiness.

This is very touching wartime novel that recounts, without sensationalism or detraction, the turbid, tragic nature of this period. By sharing the experiences of just one mother we actually get an incredibly broad insight into the true impact of human conflict.

I hadn’t realised this was the last book in a trilogy when I read Sadie’s War, which shows that it stands alone perfectly. I shall now be reading the first two novels in the series to find out more about the fascinating family on whom the books are based.

 

Purchase Link

mybook.to/SadieW 

UK link: https://amzn.to/2UrNif1

 

Author bio

I worked as a  librarian, mostly with young people, so books have been my life, ever since I first stepped into a library and found a magical treasure trove. My other love is social history. Retirement gave me the opportunity to travel to Australia where I discovered stories that deserved to be written. I found a new career as an author which gives me immense pleasure. I write for myself but am delighted that others enjoy my books.

 

Social Media Links 

https://twitter.com/chirosie

 rosemarynoble.wordpress.com

https://www.facebook.com/RosemaryJaneNoble/

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Book Review: Endangered Eagle by Richard Carl Roth

This book describes itself as ‘a historical novel’. It entwines fact and fiction to create the story behind an attempt to assassinate Charles Lindbergh on a visit to Berlin. It’s been meticulously researched and the author enters into the spirit of the period and place he is portraying, namely 1930s Germany. For example, he uses the Germanic forms of names at their first appearance, and the German style of giving addresses to create a contemporary atmosphere. This is a nice touch, as is the list of translated words he offers and the very informative prologue that sets the scene superbly. The list of players is useful too. The author builds tension throughout the story and portrays tenderness and brutality equally convincingly.

However, the book is bitty. This arises largely from the switching between first and third person narrative which isn’t totally successful. Eighty-five chapters is a lot and the reader is jumping from one scene to another, sometimes too quickly. The author tends to write in short paragraphs too so there is a disjointed feel at times. It’s an ambitious and complicated novel which the author must be applauded for that and it’s obvious he has poured his heart and soul into his work. I feel this author’s forte is non-fiction although he is clearly imaginative. And I would like to see more character development.  There are a few typos but generally this is a well-planned and well-presented piece of writing from a promising author who is yet to find his preferred voice. It’s entertaining, educational and makes for very interesting, if slightly fidgety, reading.