Friday, February 19, 2021

Book Review - When Twilight Breaks by Sarah Sundin


My Review

When Twilight Breaks is a historical novel set in Munich, 1938. Evelyn Brand is an American working in Munich as a foreign correspondent. She faces daily challenges as a woman in a male dominated field. She worries about her safety in Munich because she has Jewish ancestry. Through her work, Evelyn meets an American graduate student, Peter Lang. They form an uneasy friendship/flirtation. When tensions build in the city, Evelyn and Peter must work together to protect their Jewish friends, to safely spread the word about what they are witnessing, and to try to remain safe.

I wanted to read this novel because I love Sarah Sundin's books. She is one of my favorite historical fiction authors. I also found it appealing that this book is a standalone read. 

I think of Sarah Sundin first when I think of 1940's/World War II historical fiction. The historical details in her books are so beautifully researched and she has such a gift at bringing this time period to life. For instance:

"Tuesday, May 10, 1938. The bells of the glockenspiel tinkled their tune from the balcony of the town hall as wooden figures jousted and rolled out beer barrels. Peter would never tire of the show at the Neues Rathaus or the wonder on the faces of those who filled the Marienplatz. Like the little towheaded boy tugging on his hurried mother’s hand and tripping over his feet trying to watch. The wooden rooster crowed three times, and the crowd went on its way. So did Peter. He always timed his walk to the G√§rtnerplatz so he passed through the Marienplatz when the glockenspiel played" (eBook location 1196).

This was a fascinating story. Evelyn is such a strong, determined person. I cannot imagine the courage it took her on a daily basis to report from Munich on the cusp of World War I, especially as a woman with a Jewish background (three of her grandparents were Jewish but she was raised Christian).

Peter evolved a great deal as a character in this book. He also grew into a character with great bravery and determination. I loved his quiet strength and the way he always was supportive of Evelyn and her work, at a time when this often was not the case.

This is a very suspenseful novel! I flew through it in a weekend because I couldn't put it down. I cannot recommend When Twilight Breaks highly enough for fans of historical fiction, and especially for anyone who is interested in the World War II period. This is sure to be one of my top 10 reads of the year.

Book Synopsis

Evelyn Brand is an American foreign correspondent determined to prove her worth in a male-dominated profession and to expose the growing tyranny in Nazi Germany. To do so, she must walk a thin line. If she offends the government, she could be expelled from the country--or worse. If she does not report truthfully, she'll betray the oppressed and fail to wake up the folks back home.

Peter Lang is an American graduate student working on his PhD in German. Disillusioned with the chaos in the world due to the Great Depression, he is impressed with the prosperity and order of German society. But when the brutality of the regime hits close, he discovers a far better way to use his contacts within the Nazi party--to feed information to the shrewd reporter he can't get off his mind.

As the world marches relentlessly toward war, Evelyn and Peter are on a collision course with destiny.


Author Bio

Sarah Sundin is the bestselling author of several popular WWII series, including Sunrise at Normandy, Waves of Freedom, Wings of the Nightingale, and Wings of Glory. Her novels have received starred reviews from Booklist, Library Journal, and Publishers Weekly. The Sky Above Us received the Carol Award, her bestselling The Sea Before Us received the FHL Reader's Choice Award, and both Through Waters Deep and When Tides Turn were named on Booklist's "101 Best Romance Novels of the Last 10 Years." Sarah lives in Northern California. Visit www.sarahsundin.com for more information.

 

I received a copy of this eBook from Revell Reads and Netgalley.

 

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