When We Were Young and Brave (Gaynor)

When We Were Young and Brave (Gaynor)

I really enjoyed this story, even though it was really rather sad in many ways, but it also showed the resiliency of people. Hazel Gaynor does an excellent job making you really care about the characters and make you want to know more about the events surrounding the story she has written.

I received and read an advance reader’s copy of this title through NetGalley.
When We Were Young and Brave Book Cover When We Were Young and Brave
Gaynor, Hazel
Historical Fiction
William Morrow
October 6, 2020
Trade Paperback, eBook

China, December 1941. Having left an unhappy life in England for a teaching post at a missionary school in northern China, Elspeth Kent is now anxious to return home to help the war effort. But as she prepares to leave China, a terrible twist of fate determines a different path for Elspeth, and those in her charge.

Ten-year-old Nancy Plummer has always felt safe at Chefoo School, protected by her British status. But when Japan declares war on Britain and America, Japanese forces take control of the school and the security and comforts Nancy and her friends are used to are replaced by privation, uncertainty and fear. Now the enemy, and separated from their parents, the children look to their teachers – to Miss Kent and her new Girl Guide patrol especially – to provide a sense of unity and safety.

Faced with the relentless challenges of oppression, the school community must rely on their courage, faith and friendships as they pray for liberation – but worse is to come when they are sent to a distant internment camp where even greater uncertainty and danger await . . .

Inspired by true events, When We Were Young and Brave is an unforgettable novel about impossible choices and unimaginable hardship, and the life-changing bonds formed between a young girl and her teacher in a remote corner of a terrible war.

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