Book reviews are subjective. I tend to rate books not according to how “perfect” they are, seem to be, or are said to be in general but rather to how perfect they are to me. Tyndale House provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for an honest review.
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
(Click the title to find the book description/blurb.)
When American Claire Stewart joined the French Resistance against the Nazis, she dreamed of daring adventure with the man she loves: the kind of grand and noble escapades she wants to write about. But she soon finds herself stranded and bewildered in England with five Jewish children she smuggled from France in Until We Find Home, a novel by author Cathy Gohlke.
Now, I’ll admit that for half the book or so, although I was enjoying it, I practically felt as at sea as the heroine, not sure what to make of the story. Though my expectations weren’t as romantic as Claire’s, I imagined this World War II tale was going to have more scenes of travel and danger. So it took me a while to settle into the novel’s slower pace and—notwithstanding its few scenes of wartime danger—to gather that much of the story is about burgeoning family life. Not “going” or “escaping” to get home, but truly “finding” home.
I’ll also admit that Claire is the kind of heroine I’d like to tell to quit pining away already, wake up, and get up, but I guess that’s much of the point of her character. So it’s not a big deal that I didn’t start to warm up to her until late in the read. This story is not at all only told from Claire’s perspective, though, as you get to see through several more of the characters’ eyes. Overall, they’re the kind of cast that grows on you.
Also, even as the novel is one of strong Christian faith, one thing I appreciate is that there isn’t an attempt to make Christians of all the key characters. The times when Jewish characters from different countries connect under their common heritage are among my favorite moments in the story. And I found the read to become more touching and powerful as it drew toward its climax and conclusion.
I’d certainly recommend this novel to fellow fans of historical ChristFic.