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Saturday, November 18, 2006

November Challenge

I am going to join Kate's November Challenge: November Challenge which really won't be difficult for me because I am forever reading books set during the World Wars. The first one I've read is: Choose Your Dilemma: An Australian Pacifist in Hitler's Europe, which was about a young schoolteacher with Communist leanings caught in the war in Europe. He taught in Switzerland at an international school when war broke out. This book contains letters that he wrote home to his mother which are a very interesting account of the atmosphere in Europe just before the war and his decision to join the Quaker faith. I don't agree with his politics and I did find some of the book a bit dry but it's well worth reading.

Now I'm reading How Sleep the Brave by Catherine Gavin again, which is the third novel of her great trilogy set in the French Resistance. This one features Mike Marchand, a young former RAF pilot and his South American girlfriend, Dina, as well as the brave Resistance lawyer, Jacques Brunel, and his wife, Polly, who also works for the French Resistance. These books are very well-written and full of history. Catherine Gavin was a war correspondent and her knowledge of the facts shines. She does have quite a bee in her bonnet about Charles de Gaulle, however.

The third one that I'll read is The Idle Hill of Summer by Julia Hamilton. This is set in the First World War and is a very sad, but moving and sensitive story. (I'm reading this again.)

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