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WWII fiction

Tall Poppies Review: ‘Daughters of the Night Sky’ Pays Homage to WWII Female Pilots

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When I sat down with this book, I knew nothing about the Night Bomber Regiment in the Red Army—a group of all-female Russian pilots that bombed Germany during WWII. I quickly found myself captivated by this band of determined women, who not only wanted to save their country from invasion and protect their sweethearts at the front, but longed to shatter the age-old expectations surrounding their sex. Katya Ivanova is a sympathetic protagonist with a fiery spirit to match her fiery hair. Her young girl’s dream of escaping the poverty shaping her existence takes root in the airplanes that she sees flying over her mountain home. In school—and later during her intensive military training—she quickly rises in the ranks, becoming…

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Q&A with David Plante, Author of ‘American Stranger’ and ‘Difficult Women’

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Brought up in a secularized Jewish household on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, Nancy Green knows little about her parents’ past. She knows they were World War II Jewish refugees who were able to escape Germany with precious family heirlooms that are constant reminders of a lost life and a world about which Nancy knows very little. In David Plante’s novel, American Stranger, (Delphinium Books; January 9, 2018) the main character, Nancy, has a longing for some kind of spiritual connection that first leads her into an encounter with a Hasidic Jewish man who, unable to find meaning in his own religion, has taken vows to become a monk. She then becomes romantically involved with Yvon, a Catholic college student in…

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Messineo’s ‘The Fire by Night’ Sheds Light on Nurses During Wartime

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Though all wars result in the same atrocious outcome, they are hardly similar in their origins. They often start with an incident, a provocation, appearing to be insignificant, but releasing long-supressed emotions. This can be a process which may take years to burn out. On May 8, 2017, we celebrated the official end of WWII, and though the conflict has been over for more than 70 years, it still continues to consume us on intellectual and spiritual levels. We still try to comprehend how atrocities of this magnitude are possible. We remember the main perpetrators, their names synonymous with locations, whereas all the forgotten heroes and sacrificed populations are collectively remembered as the ‘casualties.’ Even in memory, wars and history…

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‘Sophie and the Rising Sun’ Kicks Up Our Love for World War II Romances

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I have a huge weakness for romances set during World War II. It may have started with my obsession over The Bronze Horseman (Best. Book. Ever.), or maybe after I watched The English Patient all the way back in high school. But now I am officially, one hundred percent hooked. There’s just something about the nostalgia, the romance, and the heightened sense of danger that pulls me in every time. Which is why I jumped for joy when I heard that Augusta Trobaugh’s charming novel, Sophie and the Rising Sun, was being made into a movie. Set in Georgia in the early 1940s, Sophie tells the story of a lonely widow who falls for Mr. Oto, a mysterious Japanese man…

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