[Book Review] DOCTOR WHO : MYTHS AND LEGENDS by Richard Dinnick

As a die-hard Whovian, it should come as no surprise that I jumped at the chance to read and review Richard Dinnick‘s latest offering, DOCTOR WHO : MYTHS & LEGENDS Epic Tales From Alien Worlds, when it was made available for request on NetGalley.

DETAILS:

TITLE: DOCTOR WHO : MYTHS & LEGENDS Epic Tales From Alien Worlds

AUTHOR: RICHARD DINNICK

GENRE: SciFi & Fantasy, Teens & YA

PUBLISHED BY: Penguin Random House UK , BBC Books

PUBLICATION DATE: 26th September 2017

EDITION: Hardback

ISBN: 9781785942495

PRICE: $16.99 (USD)

DESCRIPTION:

THOUGHTS:

As a long-time lover of Greek Mythology, I was delighted to discover that this anthology was actually a collection of fourteen short stories based on well-known; and much loved; Greek Myths.

During his introduction, Chancellor Drakirid; Historian to the Bureau of Ancient Records on Gallifrey; makes reference to the repeated appearance of an unknown man at various points within the legends.

He is never given the same name twice and always seems to wear a different face.

Now, who does that remind you of?

Each offering is a retelling of a classic tale; such as The Mondas Touch, inspired by the story of King Midas, in which we meet Queen Lydia as she is presented with a legendary metal gauntlet purported to have special powers. On donning the glove, she soon discovers it does indeed have the power to upgrade both the planet’s technology and her Royal guards…. I’m sure you can work out what happens next!

Tales of King Minos, his Labyrinth, and the Minotaur it held, were a firm favourite during my Classical studies class at school (many years ago!); therefore I was looking forward to reading The Labyrinthine Web in which a Gallifreyan colony finds that the arrival of a Racnoss ship brings invasion. Enslaved by Messothel, commander of the spider-like craft, the Time Lords are first forced to build the titular Labyrinthine Web then to draw lots to become tributes within the hatchery it holds. Will the scientific minds of this outpost of Gallifrey be able to outsmart their oppressors? You’ll need to read it to find out!

Another personal favourite was The Angels of Vengeance, a tale based on the story of the three Furies and Orestes. I’ve always had a soft spot for the Weeping Angels, and their use as a means of execution in this tale is an interesting take on them.

Each short story is well-written and offers an intriguing SciFi twist to well-known tales of ancient mythology.

RATINGS & RECOMMENDATIONS:

I rate this legendary anthology 5 out of 5 stars.

I recommend DOCTOR WHO: MYTHS & LEGENDS to readers of all ages; in particular fans of Doctor Who, lovers of myths and legends; especially Greek mythology; and those who enjoy retellings of classic tales.

THE AUTHOR:

Richard Dinnick

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[Book Review] NO SHAME by Anne Cassidy

Stacey Woods has been raped and now she has to go through a different ordeal: the court trial. But nothing in life it seems is black and white and life is not always fair or just. Suddenly it seems that she may not be believed and that the man who attacked her may be found not guilty . . . if so Stacey will need to find a way to rebuild her life again . . .

A tautly told and important book, perfect for readers of Asking for It by Louise O’Neill.

DETAILS:

TITLE: NO SHAME

AUTHOR: Anne Cassidy

GENRE: YA , Fiction , Personal & Social Issues

EDITION: Paperback

PAGES: 192

PUBLISHED BY: Hot Key Books

PUBLICATION DATE: 21 September 2017

ISBN: 9781471406782

PRICE: £7.99

STORY:

NO SHAME continues Stacey’s story which we were introduced to in Cassidy’s previous book, NO VIRGIN; a raw, powerful, moving tale about a girl attempting to deal with the aftermath of a sexual attack.

Written as companion books, both can be read as stand-alones, so don’t be put off picking this up if you haven’t read the other.

In NO VIRGIN, Stacey is the victim of a terrible sexual attack. In the beginning she does not feel able to go to the police, or talk about it to anybody other than her best friend, Patrice. Patrice, outraged, when she cannot persuade her to go to the police, encourages Stacey to write everything down; and the first book is Stacey’s story of how she starts to come to terms with what happened, and her eventual decision to report the crime.

NO SHAME returns to Stacey’s story nine months later, and a week before her attacker; who was subsequently arrested and charged; is to be tried.

Finding it difficult to move on with her life, she has put her social life on hold and is thinking about deferring her university place for the next year.

Although she has the support of her family, best friend, headteacher and Annie; her assigned police officer; she is struggling to come to terms with the impending court case and is increasingly aware of how confused her feelings are for her rapist’s brother, a young man she barely knew but felt intensely attracted to.

The prosecuting team warn her that without evidence or witnesses, it is going to be difficult in court but everyone assumes that justice will prevail.

Putting on a brave face, Stacey attends court but finds her composure rattled when she comes face to face with her attacker; the press become interested in the case, and then she has to go through a brutal cross-examination in court; leaving her scared of the possible outcome.

THOUGHTS:

Anne Cassidy approaches a sensitive and important subject matter head on.

Overall Stacey is shown as a strong character rather than being seen as a a victim and ultimately becomes empowered by the court process; immaterial of the actual outcome. Her strength in adversity and ability to see her quest for justice through to the end is also seen as empowering to others who may find themselves in similar situations.

The court proceedings are relatively true to life and the inclusion of detailed contact information for a number of helpful organisations who offer advice, support, counselling, advocacy, and legal services for anyone affected by rape or sexual assault shows a desire to empower and equip survivors with the tools they require to rebuild their lives.

Whilst frustrating to witness, Stacey’s clouded judgement when it comes to Harry and her belief he was in someway also a victim of his older brother seems like a normal human reaction. Understandably it seems better for her to believe he was not a willing player in Marty’s devious plans.

Before I started reading this book, I assumed that it would be a somewhat harrowing and unsettling read; but I can honestly say that I finished it feeling uplifted, both by Stacey’s decisions to restart her life and not let her experiences define her future, and by the positive support network surrounding her.

RATINGS & RECOMMENDATIONS:

A thought-provoking, and at times uncomfortable read, I rate this ultimately empowering book 5 out of 5 stars.

Recommended for both readers of Cassidy‘s companion book NO VIRGIN, or Asking for It by Louise O’Neill; as well as fans of Juno Dawson and Malorie Blackman.

THE AUTHOR:

Born in 1950s London, Anne Cassidy spent many years in teaching before becoming a full-time writer in 2000, specialising in crime stories and thrillers for teenagers.
Many of her works have been shortlisted for various literary prizes, including LOOKING FOR JJ (shortlisted for both the 2004 Whitbread Prize and the 2005 Carnegie Medal) and MOTH GIRLS (nominated for the 2017 CILIP Carnegie Medal and shortlisted for the 2017 Sheffield Children’s Book Award).

She can be found on Twitter using the moniker @annecassidy6.

I received an advanced reader print copy of NO SHAME, via ReadersFirst, for the purpose of supplying an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

As always, thanks for stopping by!

Hugs,

Crafty xx

[Book Review] TROLL by D. B. Thorne 

34007676

TITLE: TROLL

AUTHOR: D.B. Thorne

GENRE: Fiction, Thriller/Suspense

EDITION: Paperback

PAGES: 368

PUBLISHED BY: Corvus Books

PUBLICATION DATE: 1 June 2017

ISBN: 9781782395942

PRICE: £12.99

Monsters who live online don’t always stay there…

The Story

Fortune is a man who has found himself so far removed from life with his family that when his daughter goes missing he doesn’t know what to do or how to connect with his estranged wife.
As time passes and the investigation is cut back, he accuses the police of giving up on her, whilst guiltily realising that he himself gave up a longtime ago.

Sophie, the daughter, has a history of depression and attempted suicide on a number of occasions and the longer time passes with no information the easier it seems for people to assume that she has taken her own life. However, we are quickly introduced to various events which give cause to question this; Sophie loses her journalism position at a celebrity gossip magazine after a sting goes wrong and she is accused of stalking and threatening the mark, a celebrity with a dubious taste for young girls. Her homelife suffers as her landlord eventually evicts her after anonymous complaints of noise & antisocial behaviour are heaped against her. Distanced from the few friends she has, A Sophie finds herself alone and unable to get anyone to believe her assertions that she isn’t guilty. The only person who seems to have a vested interest in her is the troll posting vitriolic comments on her blog and it isnt long before we realize that his obnoxious actions have seeped into her offline world too….

Refusing to believe that Sophie has just vanished, Fortune leaves his home and work in Dubai and returns to London in an a attempt to find out what happened to her. As he delves deeper into his daughter’s life (a life he comes to realize he knows very little about) he becomes more and more convinced that all is not as it seems.

The cover gives the impression of a dark and foreboding thriller full of tension.

As I continued reading, I found myself with more questions….
•IS Sophie alive?
If not, what happened to her?

•Was the sheet really a suicide note (i think not) or was it her thoughts regarding the problems she was having with someone trolling her online (and possibly IRL too?)?

•Is Starry Urbano, the unusually named internet troll, someone known to them?

•And is there a connection between both Fortunes’ worklife problems?

First Impressions

When i first started reading, I felt that the tension would continue to gradually build in this thriller; I liked the way the author kept the different story threads unravelling by lifting each in turn, as the chapters alternated between Fortune in the present day and Sophie in the recent past.
I was eager to continue reading to find out how they would all converge.

Thoughts

Without wanting to give too much away (I try to keep my reviewing a spoiler-free zone!) I found TROLL an interesting read. The action and suspense were well-paced and I found the way that different forms of prose such as blog entries and email correspondences were woven into the storytelling gave the whole thing extra interest. It was almost a mixed-media collage of writing and ideas and alluded to layers of secrecy to be uncovered.

With regards to twists, I must admit that I had an inkling of what was coming relatively early on, but this in no way lessened my enjoyment of the story.

Rating & Recommendations

A suspense-filled read, I rate this thriller 4 out of 5 stars.

Recommended reading for lovers of thrilling fiction and fans of Holly Sneddon.

The Author

D.B. Thorne
You can connect with him via Twitter or find out more at davidthornecri.me.

Disclosure

I received a free ARC of this book from the publisher Corvus Books, via ReadersFirst prior to publication.

As always, thanks for taking the time to stop by! I’d love to hear whether you have or would like to read this!

Hugs,

Crafty xx

[Book Review] ‘Twenty-Four Potential Children of Prophecy’ by Emily Martha Sorensen

TITLE: TWENTY-FOUR POTENTIAL CHILDREN OF PROPHECY

AUTHOR: EMILY MARTHA SORENSEN


Henina tends to irritate people. She can’t help it — she’s bad at shutting her mouth. So when a prophecy is made that someone will stop the war, she figures she’s the worst possible choice.

Too bad.

The Fates have their sights set on her, and it will take all her cleverness and quite a lot of offending the king to foist the prophecy off on somebody else instead.

But she can do it. After all, there are a lot of potentials to choose from.


The Author

Emily Martha Sorensen writes young adult, middle grade, and clean new adult fantasy. I must admit, it is a bit of a breath of fresh air to start reading a book and when my young teen niece asks what it’s about; and is subsequently intrigued; I have no qualms at saying she can read it when I’m done! If you’ve hung around here for any length of time, you’ll know I have a soft spot for the gory, the gruesome and the downright grotesque; but sometimes a light, witty and easy to read tale of skullduggery is what’s​ needed!

I was delighted when I recently received an email offering the chance to review an ARC of this, her latest* book, and quickly got stuck in.

[ * Boy! She works fast! In between arranging to review this and reading it (in the space of less than a week!) , Emily has also released her next book Trials of a Teenage Werevulture  ]


The Book

We join the story on Prophecy Day, a monthly event where the King’s personal soothsayer and fortune teller impart what The Fates purportedly have in store for the kingdom in the coming weeks. The marketplace is heaving as whilst the general population usually aren’t too interested, the prophecy last month led to the King throwing silver coins into the crowd and so all are eager to attend just in case there is a repeat performance.

We meet Henina, a mouthy young woman who apprenticed to her father, wants to live her life her way, without the constraints of ‘normal’ married life and children. She is bolshy, and argumentative, and I adore her. 

Then a prophecy is made that changes everything…

“The days of the war are numbered.  The one who will end it now stands within this square.  You will know her by the mark of the star she bears on her hand.  She will rule the kingdom with wisdom and grace.”


No-one seems to care when she argues that it is a scar from a recent burn that she bears rather than a mystical mark, or indeed question the scratches or even drawn on stars that the other potentials show.

All Twenty-Four are escorted to the castle to begin their training whilst the court awaits the revelation of The Fates’ chosen one.

The following days are spent with Henina trying, through a series of ever more outlandish schemes, to thwart any possible plans which The Fates may have for her.

The main characters in Twenty-Four Potential Children of Prophecy are marvelous. Henina especially is wonderfully annoying. She clearly has no ability for internal dialogue and just blurts out whatever she is thinking; making for truly amusing exchanges with those, whom she meets along the way, who then have to suffer her infernal chattering; constant questioning & complaining. The other twenty-three are a varied lot, everyone from the four-year old daughter of peasants; to Anna Khordoa, the haughty niece of the King; and Henina’s uproarious interactions with them all as they vie for position as THE Child of the Prophecy are hilarious.

Each person she meets is quickly dubbed with a (not always flattering!) nickname, thus the King’s haughty neice Anna is known as The Spoilt Brat and his Fortune-Teller becomes The Self-Important Charlatan; whilst Helga , fortune-teller and one of the Potentials, is referred to as The Fortune Teller (or indeed, The Fortune Teller who is not called Helga – it makes sense, I promise!!)

Henina’s attempts to thwart The Fates become more and more outlandish as the story progresses, and each idea seems to backfire as both coincidences and consequences start to pile up.

  • Who is the real Child of the Prophecy?
  • Will Henina escape The Fates?
  • Will she find her Grace?
  • Will they stop the 50 year war?

You’ll need to read the book to find out!!


Another amusing touch is the way the chapter titles (& contents!) relate to the chapter number:

Chapter 3: Three Silver Coins That Smell Like Feet      

Chapter 7: Seven Influential People I’ve Offended Today   

Chapter 10: Ten Impossible Things for Breakfast 

Chapter 13: Thirteen Griddle Cakes and a Greedy Sister  

Chapter 16: Sixteen Possible Traitors, and One Maybe

…. and so on.


Rating and Recommendations

I wholeheartedly rate this witty read with 5 out of 5 stars and wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it to anyone, aged 10-100, who enjoys a fantasy novel with a historical slant and a large dose of giggles.This book is a perfect melding somewhere between classic Greco-Roman tragi-comedy and laugh-outloud modern sitcom. It really is an extremely wittily & cleverly woven tale. I can’t recommend it highly enough; and I cannot wait for the release of the sequel, Fifty-Three Assassins with a Head-Cold .


For more information on Emily and her work, visit EmilyMarthaSorensen.com , where you’ll find links to her books, giveaways and the opportunity to join her mailing list (and receive a copy of Six Shiny Silver Coins and the Ridiculous Ruckus They Caused a free short story which is the prequel to Twenty-Four Potential Children of Prophecy.)


Disclosure

I received an e-book copy of this book, direct from the author and free of charge, in return for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.


As always, thanks for stopping by!

Hugs, 

Crafty xx

[Book Review] THE WEIGHT OF HIM by Ethel Rohan

TITLE: THE WEIGHT OF HIM

AUTHOR: Ethel Rohan

GENRE: Contemporary Fiction

EDITION: Paperback

PAGES: 352

PUBLISHED BY: Atlantic Books

PUBLICATION DATE: 1 June 2017

ISBN: 9781786491909

PRICE: £12.99

How do you carry on, when you lose someone you love?

The Story

Already struggling with his health, weight and personal relationships; Big Billy Brennan finds himself unable to cope when his family suffer a great tragedy.

Michael, their eldest son; a well-liked and seemingly confident teen; commits suicide.

Whilst wife & mother Tricia thinks that trying to return some semblance of normality to family life is the way forward, Billy sees it as an impetus to improve his life and that of those around him. 

Inspired by their youngest kids’ sponsored walkathon, Billy decides to get fit whilst simultaneously raising both funds and awareness for suicide prevention charities.

He embarks on a weightloss and exercise programme that very quickly takes over his life. Weighing in at over 400 lbs, he decides he wants to lose half; the only problem is, he is so morbidly obese and unfit that even walking to the garden gate is a struggle!

Although he has a few moments of weakness, he gradually garners the support of colleagues, reporters and the local residents; and this spurs him on.

The only problem is, those he feels should be supporting him the loudest; his wife, kids, sister and parents; all, for various reasons of their own, don’t want him to succeed.

‘Conjures all the grief and regret of a family who has suffered an insurmountable loss. Ethel Rohan captures a blend of comedy and tragedy that is entirely true to family, hometown, and our own private struggles. Poignant and inspiring.’ – Eowyn Ivey, international bestselling author of THE SNOW CHILD

First Impressions

The cover is intriguing; the illustration seems light-hearted, in direct juxtaposition with the subject material.

Further into the story, there is also an element of who will fill Michael​’s boots on the farm.

The author’s vivid descriptions of Billy’s thoughts & feelings, and his all-consuming desperate need of; and enjoyment from; comfort eating make for uncomfortable reading. 

Each member of the Brennan family is trying to cope with the pain of their loss in the best way they can. I can understand Billy’s need to do something, but Tricia’s wish to try to return their day-to-day to normality (or as normal as it can be) is equally as valid.

However I must admit to feeling an irrational amount of irritation with regards to the responses of the grandparents. At first, it seems they are just old and set in their ways, but as we learn more about Billy’s own childhood, it becomes clear that they have always been particularly cold.




Hopefully Billy finds some peace through his weightloss and improved wellbeing endeavours and perhaps as he feels better both about and within himself, so too will the rest of the family. 

Thoughts

The author writes about the family’s feelings of loss, grief and uncertainty in a thoughtful manner and whilst saddening in places, i can imagine that reading it at or after a time of loss may prove a useful aid to processing the mixed emotions felt.

On a personal note, I know one of our family stories that always encites giggles is from around the time of my father passing away. Anyone looking from outside would probably find it somewhat crass but the reality was (and still is) that this particular moment of mild hysteria kept us going.  

Rating & Recommendations

A touching story, I rate this bittersweet and uplifting tale 4 out of 5 stars.

The author deals with highly emotive subjects such as suicide, addiction, grief and loss in a sensitive manner; whilst introducing just the right amount of humour.

The Author

Born and raised in Dublin, Ireland; Ethel Rohan now lives and works in San Francisco.

She is the author of two short story collections, Goodnight Nobody and Cut Through The Bone. Her work has also been featured in publications such as The New York Times, PEN America and The Rumpus; as well as reviewing for the New York Journal of Books among others. 

You can connect with her via Twitter or find out more at EthelRohan.com.

Disclosure

I received a free ARC of this book from the publisher Atlantic Books, via ReadersFirst  publication.

As always, thanks for taking the time to stop by! I’d love to hear whether you have or would like to read this!

Hugs, 

Crafty xx

[Book Review] ‘Love in Row 27’ by Eithne Shortall

TITLE: LOVE IN ROW 27

AUTHOR: Eithne Shortall

GENRE: Romance

EDITION: Paperback

PAGES: 352

PUBLISHED BY: Corvus

PUBLICATION DATE: 1 June 2017

ISBN: 9781786492036

PRICE: £7.99


The Story

Heartbroken and home from Berlin after the breakdown of a 2 year romance, Cora finds herself working the check-in desk at Heathrow where a serendipitous policy change regarding a pause on self-service means she finds herself in the position to play Cupid (indeed, this becomes the name her flight attendant friend Nancy affectionately calls her). 

Cora and Nancy have a system where suitable single candidates for love are sat together in row 27. Cora gets proceedings started by a bit of surreptitious Facebook research to choose the best matches, then Nancy oils the wheels with coffee and an encouragement to chat. 

As the book progresses, we learn more about Cora’s failed romance and her mother’s ailing health. Diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, Sheila is now living in a research clinic and as she was (as an ex-employee) instrumental in her daughter getting the Airline job, Cora finds herself torn with the idea of moving on elsewhere because leaving the airport also means leaving behind all the stories and memories to be shared about her mum; that soon Sheila will be unable to remember. 

Cora becomes obsessed with her matchmaking, to the detriment of her friendships, and her own possible chance at romance; when Nancy attempts a little matchmaking of her own, between Cora and the tall, dark and handsome Charlie from airline security.

A particularly entertaining thread that runs through the book is Cupid’s attempts to find love for frequent high-flyer Ingrid, a Swedish businesswoman; and the only passenger to cotton-on to the matchmaking scheme.

Throughout the story we remeet a few more frequent targets, such as Aiden; a handsome doctor who intrigues & infuriates Cora in equal measure on his weekly return flights to Ireland.

Thoughts

The book cover design is whimsical and fun and whilst i don’t tend to go for chick-lit or romances; i really enjoyed the humourous writing, the witty repartee between Cora & Nancy, and the touching way that the issue of Alzheimer’s is addressed as we learn more about Cora’s mum Sheila’s ailing health. 


Rating & Recommendations

Both witty & touching, I rate this entertaining read 4 out of 5 stars.


I was surprised how much I enjoyed this book and found myself glad I tried a genre I would normally overlook.

I would recommend this book to fans of Marian Keyes, and those who enjoy a romance with plenty of humour.

The Author

Based in Dublin after having previously lived in London, France and America; Eithne Shortall is a former student of journalism at Dublin City University.

She is an arts correspondent for The Sunday Times, and Love In Row 27 is her debut novel.

A self-confessed committed matchmaker from an early age; she enjoys sea swimming, cycling and eating scones; when not concerning herself with other people’s love lives.

You can connect with the lovely Eithne Shortall on Twitter and Instagram.

Disclosure

I received a free ARC of this book from the publisher Corvus, via Readers First, in exchange for an honest review.

 

As always, thanks for stopping by!

Hugs,

Crafty xx

[Book Review] ‘The Women of the Castle’ by Jessica Shattuck

TITLE: The Women of the Castle
AUTHOR: Jessica Shattuck

GENRE: Historical Fiction

PUBLISHED BY: Bonnier Zaffre

PUBLICATION DATE: 18 May 2017

ISBN: 9781785762710

PRICE: £12.99

The Book

The Women of the Castle tells the tale of three women, and not only how they cope with both the loss, trials & tribulations of war but also how to survive in the aftermath.

The story begins with aristocratic German Marianne von Lingenfels helping host a party at Burg Lingenfels, her aunt-in-laws family seat. The castle has no electricity or running water as it is not inhabited.

It is November 1938, and the Lingenfels and their friends are nervous about Hitler and his Nazis. They know war is coming and the men hatch a plan to assassinate Hitler. Marianne is more interested in politics and literature than ‘ladylike’ pursuits such as sewing or cooking and fashion, and so she is party to these discussions. During the course of the evening, Connie, her childhood friend dubs her The commander of wives and children, entrusting her with a list of those close to all those involved in the plot. At first Marianne feels somewhat belittled by this, but in time she begins to realize that she is serving an important role by locating and assisting the survivors.

Towards the end of the war, Connie’s wife Benita and their son Martin become the first of her flock, followed by the Polish Ania and her sons. These three become The Women of the Castle as they set up home together in what remains of the old family castle.

Repeatedly raped, Benita is a broken shell of her sunny & beautiful former self. The capable Ania has secrets, and together the three women make the best of what little they have.

After the war is over, the women still have both their present and their pasts to deal with, if they have any hope of surviving the future.

Truths are ultimately uncovered, and friendships are changed forever.

For seven years, Jessica Shattuck conducted research specific to the book and research into her personal family history, combining aspects of both to weave an intricate & truthful tale which is observant & believable.

The Women of the Castle is a touching and compelling read.

Thoughts

“In war, they made impossible choices. Now, they must live with them.” Or so reads a tagline on the cover. To my mind, in times & situations such as those, rather than make choices people simply do what they have to in order to survive; very often there IS no other choices. 

The cover image itself is hauntingly atmospheric, and i like the way the women, whilst seemingly so small in comparison to the towering castle (an analogy for ‘the establishment’?), appear strong and solid against the softer muted look of the architecture. 

Ratings and Recommendations

The Women of the Castle is both thoughtprovoking and insightful, and I don’t hesitate to award it a 5 out of 5 stars rating.

I recommend it to anyone who enjoys Historical Fiction, in particular the World War Two era, and/or Womens’ History; or those who enjoyed All the Light We Cannot See, The Reader and The Light Between Oceans.

The Author

Jessica Shattuck lives in Massachusetts with her husband and 3 children.

You can find out more at jessicashattuck.com or connect with her via  Facebook or Twitter.

A Strange Coincidence

Near the beginning of the book, Marianne travels across the country in an effort to retrieve Martin, the son of her childhood friend Connie and his wife Benita, from the Children’s Home where he had been interred after his father had been executed and whilst his mother was held elsewhere.

He was looked after by the elderly Frau Vortmuller, best described as Matron of the home. He later recalls her fondly as she treated her young charges with kindness.

We are told of the Mutterkreuz, or Mother’s Cross; a pinned badge or medal awarded to German women who had borne & raised at least 4 children in a manner befitting the ideals of the government of the time; which she wears with pride.

Whilst I have previous knowledge of this item, I had never seen one, nor indeed was I absolutely certain what it looked like, as I had up until now only read or heard descriptions of these blue and white crosses with a gold star.
Imagine my surprise when, the very next morning after reading this passage, I stumbled upon one whilst browsing the upcoming lots in our local auction house.

It was a somewhat chilling discovery.

 

Do you enjoy historical fiction? I especially enjoy works (such as this) where you get the impression the author is knowledgeable about the time period they have set their writing in.  

Do you have a particular time period you favour when it comes to historical fiction?

Any recommendations?

As always, thanks for reading!

Hugs, Crafty xxx

 

 

Disclosure: I received an ARC of this book; from the publisher, via Readers First; in exchange for an honest review.