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The Wartime Book Club by Kate Thompson #Review

  The Wartime Book Club is a marvellous historical novel set on Jersey in World War Two. Written by Kate Thompson , it was published by Hodder $ Stoughton on February 13th. Jersey, 1943. Once a warm and neighbourly community, now German soldiers patrol the cobbled streets, imposing a harsh rule on the people of the island. Grace La Mottée, the island's only librarian, is ordered to destroy books which threaten the new regime. Instead, she hides the stories away in secret. Along with her headstrong best friend, postwoman Bea Rose, she wants to fight back. So she forms the wartime book club: a lifeline, offering fearful islanders the joy and escapism of reading. But as the occupation drags on, the women's quiet acts of bravery become more perilous - and more important - than ever before. And, when tensions turn to violence, they are forced to face the true, terrible cost of resistance . . . Based on astonishing real events, The Wartime Book Club is a love letter

Moondance by Diane Chandler

    Moondance by Diane Chandler charts one couple's experience through the IVF process. Cat and Dominic appear to have everything. Both high flying careerists, they have arrived at a stage in their lives when the desire for a baby cannot be ignored. Diane Chandler weaves within their story, memories of how they met and how they both relate to their childhoods. This means that you really begin to feel that you understand what makes them tick, particularly Cat. Some people might find her unsympathetic at first as she seems to take success as her rightful due. As the story unfolds, you are able to empathise with her, as her situation puts strain and pressure on every aspect of both their lives. Sometimes, the reader feels to be one step ahead of her which adds a poignancy to what is happening.

    I particularly liked the way Cat and Dominic's families were contrasted and shown to be so intrinsic to their make-up. As Cat points out at some point, only those having difficulty conceiving have to question why they want a child. You do begin to wonder whether she wants to beat the process and become pregnant or whether she is really thinking of the baby. Her relationship with her mother, who she refers to by her first name, is fascinating, especially if you look out for similarities between them. 

    As an anatomy of a marriage put under the microscope, Moondance is successful. I was thoroughly involved in the story and did care at the end what the outcome was going to be for everyone.  Well written, with a skillful blending of past and present, this is an engrossing read which rings true.

In short: searingly honest and involving.

Thanks to Blackbird Digital Books for an e-copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

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