NIGHT WITCHES BY KATHRYN LASKY
HISTORICAL FICTION - WWII
I am not a reader of Historical Fiction, especially wartime books, so the fact I adored this story speaks volumes. I requested it from Edelweiss after seeing it on the RockStar Book Tours roster because I love reading about women in nontraditional roles and careers.
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This book is full of good old storytelling. Everything about it was solid and it moved forward at a comfortable rolling pace between the high energy aerial fights and moments between family and friends. I think one thing that made it palatable, for me, as a wartime story was that each battle type was distinctively different and the fighting scenes were short. The book was much more focused on interpersonal relationships of family and friends, and the effects of war; especially on children. The Feminist element was presented in a subtle, yet very effective manner.
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The author is skilled at using setting descriptors to build an almost tactile environment without weighing the narrative down. Little details like the way a calendar was hung, or stitching on a quilt were added in just the right amounts and tucked into perfect places within the story. The secondary characters were well fleshed out and distinct from one another, and her descriptions of characters' physical features were stellar.
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I adored how Lasky wove the MC's memories of favorite childhood books through the story and also added Russian cultural bits such as old wives tales and holiday traditions.
Please make sure you drop by and read the excerpt on the first tour stop (see schedule below). I know you will be glad you did. There is also a link to the entire first chapter. And don't forget about the giveaway!
Title: NIGHT WITCHES
Author: Kathryn Lasky
Pub. Date: March 28, 2017
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Formats: Hardcover, eBook, audiobook
Find it: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Goodreads
From bestselling and award-winning author Kathryn Lasky comes an explosive adventure following the teen girl fighter pilots who took on Hitler's army . . . and won.
Fifteen-year-old Valya knows what it feels like to fly. She's a pilot who's always felt more at home soaring through the sky than down on earth. But since the Germans surrounded Stalingrad, Valya's been forced to stay on the ground and watch her city crumble.
When her mother is killed during the siege, Valya is left with one burning desire: to join up with her older sister, a member of the famous and feared Night Witches -- a brigade of young female pilots.
Using all her wits, Valya manages to get past the German blockade and find the Night Witches' base . . . and that's when the REAL danger starts. The women have been assigned a critical mission. If they succeed, they'll inflict serious damage on the Nazis. If they fail, they'll face death . . . or even worse horrors.
Historical fiction master Lasky sheds light on the war's unsung heroes -- daredevil girls who took to the skies to fight for their country -- in an action-packed thrill ride that'll leave you electrified and breathless.
Kathryn Lasky is the American author of many critically acclaimed books, including several Dear America books, several Royal Diaries books, 1984 Newbery Honor winning Sugaring Time, The Night Journey, and the Guardians of Ga'Hoole series.
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She was born June 24, 1944, and grew up in Indianapolis, Indiana, and is married to Christopher Knight, with whom she lives in Massachusetts.
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Book 15, The War of the Ember, is currently the last book in the Ga'Hoole series. The Rise of a Legend is the 16th book but is a prequel to the series. Lasky has also written Guide Book To The Great Tree and Lost Tales Of Ga'Hoole which are companion books.
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