Friday, January 10, 2014

Book Review: Rose Under Fire by Elizabeth Wein

Rose Justice wanted to fly for the British during World War II so badly, that she had her uncle, a high official with the British Royal Engineers pull some strings and she graduated early. Living in overseas and flying ferried flights for the ATA is a dream for Rose, however her dream is quickly shattered by the realities of war.

On a solo trip back from Paris, where she took her Uncle on official business, she goes off course, and is intercepted by two German planes. Upon landing, she is taken as a prisoner, yet promised that she would get a good job, food and be taken care of. It's the good, factory job that proves to be problematic when Rose realizes she is making explosives for the German army.

When she won't work she is given fünfundzwanzig twice, and sent to Ravensbrück, a woman's concentration camp. First she is befriended by Roza, a Polish "rabbit" in the camp because she refused to be operated on any further. She is then adopted by Lisette, a French woman who married a Jewish cellist, and moved to Poland where she had two boys. Her husband and sons were killed, while she was sent to Ravensbrück. Rose is given extra bread in exchange for her poems that she makes up and recites. Means of survival are minimal in the camp, and the need for the people there to tell their stories and survive becomes a way of life.

Rose Under Fire really examines the horrors of living in a concentration camp. Author Elizabeth Wein does not sugar coat the bleak reality of what could have happened behind the doors of Ravensbrück, In closing notes, she tells of real survivors stories, and the accounts of people who lived through these horrible events.While this is a companion book to Code Name Verity, minus a few spoilers for the first book, Rose Under Fire can be read alone.

Readers looking for a powerful look at the horrors of war, as well as historical fiction fans and World War II buffs will want to check out Rose Under Fire.

I'll see you @ the library!
Katie (Now looking for something really light and funny to read before starting Allegiant. I don't think I can do dysopian after this one.)

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