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The Chalky Sea (The Canadians Book 1) Kindle Edition
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"Children of Blood and Bone"
Tomi Adeyemi conjures a stunning world of dark magic and danger in her West African-inspired fantasy debut. Learn more
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Meanwhile, in Ontario Canada, Jim Armstrong, a young, hard-working farm boy, is getting ready to harvest the wheat crop on his parent’s farm. Although he’s about to be married to his sweetheart, Alice, following a disgusting incident, wherein he discovers her surreptitiousness, and much to the dislike of his parents, he enlists in the Canadian Army. Soon Jim is shipped to England to a training camp in Aldershot, where most of the Canadian Army is billeted. There Jim is at first please to see, his brother Walt’s school friend, the instructor Corporal Tim Howardson. However, Jim’s euphoria soon evaporates when Tim doesn’t even acknowledge him and, although merely a corporal, asks to be addressed as “sir.” Tim drills the troops much like a gunnery sergeant, and even bosses them around during their free time. To make matters worse, Walt also enlists and shows up at the Aldershot camp. The servicemen are put through endless training and long to see some real action. It’s only a matter of time when things get out of hand at the military establishment and at the local bars, and tempers flare leading to fist fights and other unsavory activities. Although Jim befriends fellow servicemen, and meets an attractive Englishwoman, Joan, who’s fiancé is serving abroad, and spends some time with her; he is glad when he’s transferred to Eastbourne. There, Jim lodges in Gwen’s house and is drawn to her. With war ravaging Europe and the incessant bombing of England, the numerous characters, each having both physical and mental struggles with their jobs and those around them, strive to go about their daily lives. We are drawn to the novel’s conclusion, to learn how they would survive the horrors of war, their losses, and resolve their conflicts.
Clare Flynn has penned a wonderful romance novel. The well-researched settings during the WW2 with the details of the war and the lives of interesting characters during that tumultuous period make the book a page turner. The descriptions of military training, the work of the WVS, the operation of the German transmission’s listening station, and other war efforts are presented most realistically. The characters’ dialogue, mannerisms, and living conditions, in Canada and England, are vividly detailed such that we feel as if we are traveling amongst them. There is much to be learned from the participants’ experiences. Although there are several coincidences in the lives of the characters, which require a bit of suspension of disbelief, however, these are no more than what would normally be present in a fictional novel of this magnitude. The introduction into the plot of Gwen’s childhood in India during her father’s service there, adds more spice to the story. While most of the story lines are resolved, Ms. Flynn has left ample room for a continuation of the narrative of the future lives some of the characters, which could imply that a sequel might be forthcoming. Readers would be anxiously looking for more books by Clare Flynn. Highly recommended.
I borrowed a copy of this book from my Kindle Unlimited membership.
Gwen and Roger Collingwood has a less than romantic marriage. Because of an incident in Gwen’s life as a child, she keeps her emotions to herself, not allowing herself to care. Their home is in Eastbourne, near the cliffs of Dover. Nazi bombing comes to their area with Gwen being a part of the Women’s Voluntary Service, she helps those who have lost everything. Roger, her husband, is part of an intelligence agency and she has no idea where he is stationed. Her goal is to carry on, with her prickly attitude influencing everything she does.
Jim Armstrong lived on his parents’ farm in Ontario, Canada. As a farmer, he was not liable for conscription. However, he did entertain thoughts that he should sign up to help defeat the enemy. He was engaged to be married in a year to a childhood friend. His life seemed predestined. However, one small problem…his fiancée was in love with his brother. When he found them together, he lost it. He fled to Toronto, enlisted in the Canadian army. He was sent to England and billeted with Mrs. Collingwood. Both of them were broken souls and eventually helped each other mend. Jim also met Joan and after being together, he found that Joan was pregnant, and married her before he shipped out. What happens next is found in the next novel in the series, “The Alien Corn”.
I love the way this book is written. Even though war is upon them, the characters in the story find that life goes on and that one must adapt to it or perish emotionally, spiritually, and physically.
This one was very entertaining and even though a bit predictable and slightly smutty, well done.