Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Review: The Soldier's Wife by Margaret Leroy

Book: The Soldier's Wife by Margaret Leroy
Genre: Historical Fiction
Rating: A
For: Fun
From: a gift from Ibeeeg

You may remember that back in the summer Deanna (Ibeeeg) wrote me a letter on her blog telling me how much she thought I'd like this book, and then she up and bought it for me! Isn't she the best bloggin' buddy ever? So of course, since then, I've been anxious to read this one to see if she was right or not!

And of course she's right! It was a book to be savored and enjoyed. It's very beautifully written. I'm even tempted to say it's a "gentle" read (as we discussed on my blog once upon a time) but in reality, the subject matter makes it not so gentle.

This book takes place on the Isle of Guernsey (located in the English Channel) during the German occupation of WWII. (The Potato Peel Pie book anyone?) Our main character's husband is off fighting the war and she is left to take care of her two daughters and her mother in law. She is torn with so many decisions and what's best for her family. Can you imagine being in this position? I'm sure there's a few of you who can. It would be so hard.

So the German's come and move in next door, some of them anyway. She's scared to death of them, but begins to warm up to one of them. And you can guess where things go from there. My only complaint about this book is that for me this happened so fast! I wanted the tension and the worry and the actual attraction to build up a bit more. It was like BAM! And neither one of them seemed very concerned about what they were actually doing, you know? It seems like there would have been more anguish and stress involved.

But the best thing about this book was the peacefulness, beauty and tranquility of the setting played against the violence and horror of war. These two things were so jarring that it made you sit up and take notice. Beautiful poetic description about this wonderful place (dang I so want to go there!) and then description about starving prisoners of war and torture and beatings and bombings.

The decisions that she makes must have been her only way to survive these things really. Deanna mentioned that it was overflowing with emotion and this I totally agree with. And there's lots of sadness involved and things are not very happily ever after. This is must read for anyone interested in the happenings of WWII.

Bottom line: I totally enjoyed this one!

Other Reviews:

Books and Movies
Bookfoolery and Babble
The Bluestocking Society
Rhapsody in Books


  1. I have been rather curious about this book. I am glad you enjoyed it!

  2. I am so glad that you liked the book. I was starting to get a little worried that maybe you would not.
    I hear you about the complaint but it struck me the time did not allow for a whole lot of time to ponder a decision so that is why i went with the quickness instead being a little disappointed.

  3. This sounds like a great book. Onto my wishlist with it!

    Blogging buddies who know just the books you will love are fabulous. Ones that will then send you the books in question are even better! ;-D

  4. I have had this book on my shelves for a while after picking it up at a show. The more I hear about it the more I know that I need to move it up the pile!

    Interestingly, the title here is The Collaborator.

  5. One day I'll get to this one. :(

  6. I agree with you about the complaint. The relationship happened pretty quickly. The writing was so beautiful, though, that it completely won me over. I probably would have let this book get away with more than it did for that reason!

  7. It *is* a peaceful book, but there is an undercurrent of tension that belies the calm and beauty on the surface which really sets the tone for the book. I loved it, as I just sort of fell in love with the scenery, the characters, and the words.

  8. I'm glad to see you liked it. I can't wait to read it! I've linked to your review on War Through the Generations.



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