kbaccellia (kbaccellia) wrote,

Not another war story

World War II stories aren't usually my favorite books to read. I cringe everytime I hear how some stories talk about how great that period of history was. Funny, but I don't remember any of my family members describing the war in that way. One photo still haunts me from my Uncle Alden's collection of war pictures from his duty in the Philippines at the end of the war. This Philippino soldier is smiling at the camera and in his hands are the decapitated heads of two former Japanese officers.

So imagine my surprise when one book didn't follow my preconceived notions. Edward Bloor does a marvelous job of bringing a time of history to life through the eyes of a young boy without sugarcoating it.

In the book LONDON CALLING, Martin Conway is sleeping his life away, aimless and unhappy, until a boy appears in his room. He's a long dead boy, with an urgent question to ask.

Martin prays the boy is only a dream. But the dream comes again, and again, and again.

And the dreams are real. Martin follows the boy through the blitz-ravaged streets of London in 1940. Each time he wakes he discovers he's meet real people and learned real things-including dark and personal secrets-no one could have known.

Martin ends up going back to London to help the long dead boy with the question, what did you do to help?

I loved this book! Some of the passages were very touching. My favorite is an older man's memories of the war:

"Tell them that war isn't anybody's 'finest hour.' It's not an hour at all. It's weeks and months and years of living hell. It's having breakfast with lads in the morning, and talking and smiling with them, then seeing them two hours later, charbroiled and dead....
That's war."

I loved how Martin searched for the truth even when this meant he'd discover the truth about his own grandfather's part in the war.

This is a great book! Not only will you learn a little bit about the blitz in 1940 England but this story will make you think long after you finish the last page.
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