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The Last Day of the War by Judith Mitchell

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Posts: 2475
Joined: August 2008
Location: Arizona, USA

The Last Day of the War by Judith Mitchell

Post by Ash » Tue September 2nd, 2008, 2:27 am

I had been looking for novels about World War I, and someone recommended this . I am so very glad they did; its probably one of my favorite reads this year

Yael Weiss is an 18 year old living in St Louis. She happens to meet an American soldier who also is involved in a group taking revenge on Turks responsible for the Armenian genocide of 1915. When he goes to France, she decided to follow him. The YWCA who is recruiting young women to Paris, to help soldiers coming home. So she fakes her age, and gets onboard. You can probably guess what happens, but there is so much more to this book than a love story. There is the history of the Armenias people's survival, the response to the massacres by the powers that were in the world. The author brings up many heavy moral issues, and while her characters don't always work them through, how they respond to them moves the story. Its not all somber tho; the author manages to include some hilarious and ironic situations that don't cheapen the story at all, but make it all the more human. There are coincidences here that might be a little implausible, but I was so interested in the story and characters that they didn't bother me in the slightest. Oh, and her characters - I suspect I am going to be thinking of them quite a bit over the next day or so.

In the author notes, she gives an excellent summary of the sources she used, how she developed characters and which events were true, as well as a helpful time line. As always, I appreciate this in a HF book!

Its a quick read, but one that is sobering, and yet life affirming. I am looking forward to reading more books by this author.
Last edited by Ash on Tue September 2nd, 2008, 2:48 am, edited 1 time in total.

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