Tag: WWII

Book Review: The Paper Girl of Paris by Jordyn Taylor

The Paper Girl of Paris
Author: Jordyn Taylor

Published:  May 26, 2020
359 Pages

Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 4 stars

Book Description:

Now:
Sixteen-year-old Alice is spending the summer in Paris, but she isn’t there for pastries and walks along the Seine. When her grandmother passed away two months ago, she left Alice an apartment in France that no one knew existed. An apartment that has been locked for more than seventy years.

Alice is determined to find out why the apartment was abandoned and why her grandmother never once mentioned the family she left behind when she moved to America after World War II. With the help of Paul, a charming Parisian student, she sets out to uncover the truth. However, the more time she spends digging through the mysteries of the past, the more she realizes there are secrets in the present that her family is still refusing to talk about.

Then:
Sixteen-year-old Adalyn doesn’t recognize Paris anymore. Everywhere she looks, there are Nazis, and every day brings a new horror of life under the Occupation. When she meets Luc, the dashing and enigmatic leader of a resistance group, Adalyn feels she finally has a chance to fight back. But keeping up the appearance of being a much-admired socialite while working to undermine the Nazis is more complicated than she could have imagined. As the war goes on, Adalyn finds herself having to make more and more compromises—to her safety, to her reputation, and to her relationships with the people she loves the most.

Kim’s Review:

So this cover. This. Cover. And the story was pretty good too.

We all dream of being left a random metropolitan apartment that has been preserved by time and we are the first to open the door in decades. I geeked out just reading it. And then finding the diary of your grandmother’s sister from WWII? I was living vicariously through Alice and thoroughly enjoying it. Adalyn’s story was great! A Parisian girl who joined the French Resistance and bravely helping to defeat the Nazis is always going to be exciting and engaging. I had tears in my eyes by the time I reached the end, which was more twisty than I expected.

My main criticism is with Alice herself. I acknowledge as a historian that we can only go by documented evidence and I hold to that. But there will always be speculation, no matter the situation. Alice apparently has no imagination and could only handle one theory at a time and that got frustrating real quick. I can’t get into too much detail because I don’t want to give anything away, but long before the truth was revealed, I wanted to throw the diary at Alice’s head just to get her to open her mind a little.

But overall, I thought this was a good book and I really enjoyed it. This is a great one to give to teens for WWII reading!

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

Friant’s Video Friday: Book Review: The Secret Room by Cynthia Mercati

Today Kim is bringing you a video review of The Secret Room  by Cynthia Mercati.

The Secret Room
Author: Cynthia Mercati

Published: August 15, 2000
72 Pages

Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 4 stars

Book Description:

Annie of Holland learns about her values and the importance of hope and memories while helping care for a Jewish family hiding in her father’s church during WWII.

Kim’s Video Review:

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

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Book Review: Munich by Robert Harris

Munich
Author:
Robert Harris

Published: September 21, 2017
352 Pages

Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 5 stars

Book Description:

Guy Legat is a rising star of the British diplomatic service, serving in 10 Downing Street as a private secretary to the Prime Minister, Neville Chamberlain. Rikard von Holz is on the staff of the German Foreign Office–and secretly a member of the anti-Hitler resistance. The two men were friends at Oxford in the 1920s, but have not been in contact since. Now, when Guy flies with Chamberlain from London to Munich, and Rikard travels on Hitler’s train overnight from Berlin, their paths are set on a disastrous collision course. And once again, Robert Harris gives us actual events of historical importance–here are Hitler, Chamberlain, Mussolini, Daladier–at the heart of an electrifying, un-put-downable novel.

Kim’s Review:

I found this randomly in the bargain books at Books-a-Million and it sounded interesting, so I bought it. Strangely enough, I picked it up soon after I bought it. I can’t say everyone is going to like it. It’s a micro history of a 3-day period that ended with PM Chamberlain declaring that he had achieved “peace for our time”. I was worried that it would get tedious with all those little details, but I found myself drawn into those little details and I kept going back to it in my mind, wondering what was going to happen next.

I’ve always been critical of Chamberlain’s appeasement policy with Hitler; however, hindsight is 20/20 and Harris did a great job of breaking down Chamberlain’s reasoning for why he pursued that policy. While I still disagree with him, he has gained a little respect in my mind. Add a little bit of intrigue between Legat and Hartmann and you have a complete, fictional yet still historical look at the 3 days in September 1938. I enjoyed it so much that I bought 4 more of Harris’s books to add to my TBR!

Great book, but I’d really only recommend it to those who have an active interest in micro history.

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

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