Monday, July 17, 2017

High as the Heavens by Kate Breslin

From Amazon:
In 1917, Evelyn Marche is just one of many women who has been widowed by the war. A British nurse trapped in German-occupied Brussels, she spends her days working at a hospital and her nights as a waitress in her aunt and uncle's café. Eve also has a carefully guarded secret keeping her in constant danger: She's a spy working for a Belgian resistance group in league with the British Secret Service.

When a British plane crashes in Brussels Park, Eve is the first to reach the downed plane and is shocked to discover she recognizes the badly injured pilot. British RFC Captain Simon Forrester is now a prisoner of war, and Eve knows he could be shot as a spy at any time. She risks her own life to hide him from the Germans, but as the danger mounts and the secrets between them grow, their chance of survival looks grim. And even if they do make it out alive, the truth of what lies between them may be more than any love can overcome.

Sometimes the phrase "Don't judge a book by its cover" holds true. I don't really like the covers of the previous book I reviewed or this one, but I decided not to let the cover stand in the way. I'm glad I didn't. After all when it comes to a book, I'd rather have one with good, solid content, than just an appealing cover. 

I've always loved the World War periods, and while I don't find the heartache and destruction a pleasant thing to read about, I appreciate the history and find it interesting. 

I found this book an amazing read. The plot captured my attention quickly, and it taught me a little bit more of the hidden side of the war, the guilt people can carry, the killings that tore through peoples' hearts, and the inner wrestlings of those who stood with the Allied forces. It also demonstrated that there were good Germans sympathetic to the plight of those less fortunate, and while they couldn't necessarily do much, we do wrong if we think that all Germans were enemies. 

I thought the character development of Eve was well done for most of the book. The reader will learn to love her and struggle with her as she works among Germans, but works against their evil methods. She's a nurse, and I love that nurses in the wars took on roles more like doctors when serving the mass amounts of injured soldiers. She helps heal British and Germans alike and remains somewhat protected because of her kindness. But beneath her healing hands lies a wounded heart--one that she's not sure how to heal. 

I do think the resolution of Eve's personal struggle could have been deepened and lengthened. It just felt like a very speedy resolution after a whole book of following her life and then using one scenario and one page to bring her to the ultimate conclusion. I do think it was a good plot and scene to use, but drawing her thought process out more would have helped the reader to follow her victory like we followed her through struggles and failures. 

There is a frequent amount of romance throughout the book. However, since it was between husband and wife, it did not disturb me at all and I thought it was well done. Because of the level of romance, though, I would recommend this book for mature readers. 

Very well done, Kate! Will definitely be picking up your books wherever I can find them. :) 

*Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.

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