Wednesday, August 23, 2017
World War II Fiction: The Women of the Castle and The Lost Letter
I read a lot of novels set during the era of WWII and I'm always grateful when an author introduces me to something new. In The Women of the Castle, Jessica Shattuck focuses on the plight of women during and after the war. We witness the impossible choices that civilians must make in the heart of battle and the ways that those choices continued to haunt them even when the war was over. It's easy to believe that things got easier when the war ended but, in many ways, things continued to be difficult for a long time. Things do not magically go back to the way they were before the war and Shattuck shows just how difficult it can be to trust people again when your entire world has been upended.
Note: My galley is called The Women of the Castle, but I see that most editions are The Women in the Castle. I don't know who changed the article or when, but they are the same book as far as I can tell!
The Women of the Castle
By Jessica Shattuck
Zaffre Publishing May 2017
Read via Netgalley
Dual narratives can be the worst, right? Thankfully, Jillian Cantor achieves some sort of literary wizardry in The Lost Letter by writing well-rounded characters in the past and a protagonist that won't drive you crazy in the present. The ending is slightly predictable, but sometimes it's just nice to read about people (even fictional ones) who survived WWII and got a happy ending. I really enjoyed reading this book as well as Cantor's take on the Rosenburgs in The Hours Count and I'm glad I still have one more book of hers to read.
The Lost Letter
By Jillian Cantor
Riverhead Books June 2017
From the library
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It's like you've got a little theme reading going on! :) These books sound good. Do you have a favorite between the two?ReplyDelete
It was a happy accident as I looked at the list of books I still needed to review! I think I enjoyed The Lost Letter a bit more; Jillian Cantor is a really lovely writer.Delete
I love the sound of your first book. I do so like WW settings. Each individual story told from another angle and another angle. Fascinating.ReplyDelete
Me too! I will always pick up and at least consider reading another WWII novel.Delete
I feel like there are an awful lot of books set during WWII! I've had The Women In the Castle on my shelves for awhile and haven't been able to get excited about another WWII book yet, so I'm glad to hear it's something a little different. And I actually love dual narratives, so if you found one that won you over even though they're not your thing, I should definitely pick it up :)ReplyDelete
Thank you for sharing your knowledge and experience with me. webstagramReplyDelete