“There was no time; her sitting down to catch her breath or look for something to eat could mean a soldier died. Someone’s son, brother, husband…Tears filled her eyes, but she quickly blinked them away.”
Wives of War is a tale of three World War Two nurses, who find friendship and strength through one another during the hardships of war. The story starts out with Scarlet and Ellie meeting by chance at the railway station. Scarlet has signed up as a nurse to look for her fiancé Thomas who hasn’t been heard from in weeks. She believes that by being closer to the front she will be able to locate him. Ellie signs up because she wants to help and do her part. They agree on their way to remain close because together they will be able to handle anything. Their first stop was a home turned hospital to prepare for their arrival at the front. They do not know where they will be sent, but they are allowed to room together and develop a bond that will last through their lifetimes. Ellie meets a nice doctor and is asked to be his assistant once they embark on their journey. She is smitten right away but questions what he can see in her. When they reach their first assignment they are thrown into a world of decaying bodies, amputations and sleep deprivation. I have read about Normandy, but I can’t imagine the scene that lay in front of these nurses. Many men did not make it, or were left without legs or arms. The smells and lack of food and sleep would have pushed anyone to their breaking point. Ellie is affected the most and struggles to find her way. They meet a woman determined to become a doctor named Lucy. She takes some time to warm up to them, but in the end completes their trio. Lucy falls for a man that she saves, and Scarlet falls for a man that turns out to be her fiancé’s brother. Scarlet struggles between her heart and her duty while Lucy longs for the day her soldier will return. The ending sees the three women much changed and their lives set for the future.
The lightness of the friendship amongst the girls, their crushes on men and their determination to remain hopeful gives this story a spark that is needed when discussing difficult times in our past. War is dirty, hard on a body, and full of death and despair. These girls lived it right alongside the men and made it out to the other side. They were resourceful, and relied on one another to keep their strength. They faced extreme conditions for women of the time and only longed for hot baths and a cup of good tea. This story had excellent elements of the past along with a few love stories to keep you interested. As I’ve mentioned before, I’m a bit of a pessimist and think that everything working out so perfectly is a bit of a stretch. War time saw a lot of romances bloom and a lot of them die. Did I want any of them to lose their loves? No, but that may have been more realistic to the times. I love this kind of story because it’s an easy read and gives me some insight into the past. If you love historical fiction with romance then you will enjoy this tale of three women in their journey through war to love.
Release Date: July 1st, 2017