Thank you to Sarah Hardy and Bookouture for the opportunity to read and review my first Ella Carey novel.
The truck stopped for a moment in the freezing, bombed-out street and Kate caught sight of a little girl in a ragged dress on the steps of a once-beautiful mansion. The child’s eyes were startling blue, a pair of endless pools, drawing Kate towards her…
1946, Berlin. War correspondent Kate Mancini is in Germany, reporting on the aftermath of the devastating war. For her readers back home in New York, she tells the stories of innocent families, trying to rebuild the wreckage of their lives now the soldiers have left at last. But in the Russian-held sector of Berlin on an icy winter’s day, Kate breaks all the rules, rescuing Mia Stein, a silent orphan who she fears will otherwise perish.
Together with her fellow journalist, handsome Rick Shearer, Kate manages to find a safe house for Mia before she returns to America and vows to keep in touch. Back home, the reality of post-war life for women is stark. Whilst Rick walks into his dream job, no newspaper will hire a woman. The editors laugh her out of their offices, telling her to get married and raise a family. Rick does all he can to support her, as she takes her first steps towards the new medium of television news, and their friendship deepens into something more.
Then tragedy strikes: Rick is falsely named as a communist sympathizer. He is arrested, blacklisted and faces prison.
Kate knows she must do all she can to free the man she loves. But that means returning to Germany, to seek out the little orphan girl who is her only chance at salvation. Kate and Rick saved Mia—will she help them both now? And even if Kate succeeds, freedom might never be hers when she returns home…
From Amazon Charts bestseller Ella Carey comes an utterly heartbreaking historical novel, inspired by true events, about the courage, love and friendships that sustain us in the darkest of days. Fans of Fiona Davis, All the Light We Cannot See and My Name is Eva will be totally captivated.
This is one of my favourite historical fiction reads of the year, set in post war Europe and the United States. We first meet Kate as she tours mainland European countries that are trying to recover from 6 or more years of war. She rescues Mia, a young orphan who has been left unable to speak after the war. With the help of another journalist, Rick, Mia is left in a place of safety in Berlin looking for surviving relatives.
Kate returns to the US, to find that women are no longer required in many careers now the men are returning home from the war and the women are being actively encouraged to marry and start a family. Kate wants to continue with her career but finds herself reporting on women’s issues rather than the news.
Kate and Rick develop a friendship before secrets and family issues drive them apart, until a crisis brings them back in contact. The testimony of Mia is heartbreaking and sadly based on true life stories – a reminder of the inhumanity of mankind.
I enjoyed reading about how life was in the post war years for women in the United States. Happy to recommend this book to historical fiction readers.
Ella Carey is the international bestselling author of The Things We Don’t Say, Secret Shores, From a Paris Balcony, The House by the Lake, and Paris Time Capsule. Her books have been published in over fourteen languages, in twelve countries, and have been shortlisted for ARRA awards. A Francophile who has long been fascinated by secret histories set in Europe’s entrancing past, Ella has degrees in music, nineteenth-century women’s fiction, and modern European history. She lives in Melbourne with her two children and two Italian greyhounds who are constantly mistaken for whippets.
Ella loves to connect with her readers regularly through her facebook page and on her website.