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Age Appropriate For: 13 and up for romance and violence
Best for Ages: 15 and up
Description: Never pretty enough to please her gorgeous mother, Allie will do anything to gain her approval--even marry a man she doesn't love. Lt. Walter Novak--fearless in the cockpit but hopeless with women--takes his last furlough at home in California before being shipped overseas. Walt and Allie meet at a wedding and their love of music draws them together, prompting them to begin a correspondence that will change their lives. As letters fly between Walt's muddy bomber base in England and Allie's mansion in an orange grove, their friendship binds them together. But can they untangle the secrets, commitments, and expectations that keep them apart?
I have been a bit flighty when it comes to books lately. I have read a few pages in one book before jumping to the next book. This book grabbed my attention and didn’t let go until I read the last page. I wished I could afford to go out and buy copies of all of Sundin’s books.
This book will make my top 10 books of the year list for sure. I thought it was going to be another sweet romance with a little spiritual message. I was blown away by this story. Yes the romance was wonderful, but it was dominated by the characters’ personal struggles, and faith in God took center stage.
I was reminded in some aspects of this story of one of my favorite writers of this era, Grace Livingston Hill. Sundin so captured the time and the spirit of the people, I felt I was reading a book by a contemporary of the times. She obviously researched this book, and it made the book sparkle with authenticity.
Allie tore at my heart. She and I come from opposite worlds. I have two loving parents who share my faith, she has two uncaring parents that sneer at her faith. Yet, I felt as if I was riding the roller-coaster of emotions with her, struggling alongside her as she warred within herself what she should do.
How can I even begin to describe my love for Walt. We both come from strong believing families, and we both struggle with some of the same problems. Walt was such an upstanding guy, yet he has flaws. I do not think I have seen a character with so much integrity written with such believable human failings as well as Sudin wrote Walt – not in a very long time.
One of the other things I really appreciated about this book was how it reflected the realities of World War II without being too depressing. No one in the story comes through it unscathed. Everyone loses someone they know, or knows someone who receives a life-altering injury. Some people like to whitewash history, and everyone in their stories come back healthy and whole. This book was more realistic, without leaving me depressed.
I highly recommend this book to anyone who likes amazing historical fiction, stories that build your faith, and tales that compel you to keep reading.