Reading, it's one of my great joys. I have always loved historical fiction, and most of what I read is set back in the 1800s. When I was offered to review Like a River from Its Course, I was glad to have the opportunity. I honestly wasn't sure what to expect. I knew that it would cover a hard topic. What I wasn't aware of was how hard I was going to experience this.
We're introduced to 4 main characters in 1941. The book actually starts on my oldest son's birthday. We then follow Maria, Ivan, Frederick, and Luda over the next several years. I was surprised at how much the characters became real to me. You know, reading this book, that this is how many people lived their lives, either in fear or with twisted determination. What also surprised me is paralleling this book with things that are happening in our world today. It even scares me more than a little.
Kelli writes each character with a realness that you might expect in a documentary. Maria, a young girl whose family's world is turned upside down. Ivan, her father, and the horrors he sees and lives through. Frederick, the Nazi who has searched for his father's acceptance, all of his life. Luda, the one who tugs at my heart the most, the girl who's been broken from the start.
Here's a synopsis of the characters:
Ivan Kyrilovich is falsely mistaken for a Jew and lined up with 34,000 other men, women, and children who are to be shot at the edge of Babi Yar, the "killing ditch." He survives, but not without devastating consequences.
Luda is sixteen when German soldiers rape her. Now pregnant with the child of the enemy, she is abandoned by her father, alone, and in pain. She must learn to trust family and friends again and find her own strength in order to discover the redemption that awaits.
Frederick Hermann is sure in his knowledge that the Führer's plans for domination
are right and just. He is driven to succeed by a desire to please a demanding father and by his own blind faith in the ideals of Nazism.
I know this might sound like a heavy review, and I admit, it is, but this is such an excellent book, the hope that honestly lies throughout the entire story, makes the weight of it worth the read. You will be gripped by their lives just as I was. Now, read on to find out more about the novel, and how you have the chance to win a great prize package!
Travel back in time in Kelli Stuart's new novel, Like a River from Its Course, as the city of Kiev is bombed in Hitler's blitzkrieg across the Soviet Union. This sweeping historical saga takes the reader on a captivating journey into the little-known history of Ukraine's tragedies through the eyes of four compelling characters who experience the same story from different perspectives. Based on true stories gathered from fifteen years of research and interviews with Ukrainian World War II survivors, Like a River From Its Course is a story of love, war, heartache, forgiveness, and redemption.
Celebrate the release of Like a River from Its Course with Kelli by entering to win a Kindle Fire Prize Pack.
One grand prize winner will receive:
- A copy of Like a River from Its Course
- A Kindle Fire
- A Kindle Fire case (winner's choice)
- A $30 Amazon gift card
Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on July 18th. The winner will be announced July 19th on Kelli's blog.