We Must Be Brave by Frances Liardet
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
We Must Be Brave follows on the heels of some powerful WWII fiction that has released in recent years. From All the Light We Cannot See to The Nightingale to the recently released The Huntress we have seen books capturing the complex relationships and moral ambiguities of the times. We Must Be Brave follows the course of a childless woman taking in a young child who appears to have been abandoned or orphaned and from the opening chapters the reader knows that Ellen Parr, the protagonist, is going to be in for some serious heartbreak when the child she comes to love is inevitably returned to biological relatives.
This is a quiet story but that for me doesn't pack the emotional power of some of the books mentioned above. The evolution of a heart (Ellen never wanted children) is explored but the book's narrow focus on Ellen and the effect Pamela has wrought on her life, an effect that mirrors to some extent the way the world, from her perspective, is changed by war, never affected me the way some of these other recent books have. The slow pacing of the novel was also a challenge for the reader.
I received a Digital Review Copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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