FAR SIDE OF THE SEA by Kate Breslin, Reviewed by Paula and Winnie
In her newest novel, Far Side of the Sea, Kate Breslin takes the reader on a dangerous, courageous journey from England to France and on to Barcelona. Set during the first World War and brimming with historical detail, this story has lots of twists and turns that kept me guessing what would happen next. Breslin is a master at creating multi-layered characters that come alive on the page. The main characters, Colin Mabry and Johanna Reyer, are vividly drawn and endearing, and I enjoyed the interaction and bond between them. The secondary characters are interesting and colorful, including a special carrier pigeon named Little Corporal. I was delighted with the inclusion of the carrier pigeons in the story and enjoyed learning about their part in the war effort.
Breslin masterfully unfolded the tale layer by layer and kept the suspense up to the very end of the book. There is something for everyone in this book—history, intrigue, suspense, romance, and sprinklings of forgiveness, courage, faith, hope, and love.
“And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love.”
*I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy from the publisher. All opinions are my own.
Far Side of the Sea is a fantastic, well researched story set in World War I.
This was a real joy to read. My favorite kind of historical novel is about the World Wars and behind-the-scenes spy craft. This book captured me with the first chapter and the subject of carrier pigeons and coding messages. From England, to romantic Paris, to beautiful Toulouse and sumptuous Barcelona, the scenery Ms. Breslin depicts puts you right there among the constantly changing intrigue. It was fascinating to see how cleverly the author fit together all of the pieces like an intricate puzzle.
Johanna Reyer begs for help from Lieutenant Colin Mabry. She wants to find her father and sister. He sets out for Paris to meet Johanna. Will they get more than they bargained for? Who can they trust during this war-torn time?
The relationships are complex, including the one between Colin and his boss Jack. Colin’s sister is engaged to Jack. Colin and Jack are more than future brothers-in-law, they are comrads in battle and both have been injured. But they have a focus of loyalty to their country and a thirst to see the war end.
This novel has a steady pace that keeps your interest page after page. It is the sequel to Not By Sight by the same author. It is beneficial to read that book but not necessary for the enjoyment of Far Side of the Sea.
*I was given a complimentary copy of this book by the publisher on behalf of the author. I was not required to give a favorable review. All opinions are my own. *
Back Cover Blurb:
In spring 1918, Lieutenant Colin Mabry, a British soldier working with MI8 after suffering injuries on the front, receives a message by carrier pigeon. It is from Jewel Reyer, the woman he once loved and who saved his life--a woman he believed to be dead. Traveling to France to answer her urgent summons, he desperately hopes this mission will ease his guilt and restore the courage he lost on the battlefield.
Colin is stunned, however, to discover the message came from Jewel's half sister, Johanna. Johanna, who works at a dovecote for French Army Intelligence, found Jewel's diary and believes her sister is alive in the custody of a German agent. With spies everywhere, Colin is skeptical of Johanna, but as they travel across France and Spain, a tentative trust begins to grow between them.
When their pursuit leads them straight into the midst of a treacherous plot, danger and deception turn their search for answers into a battle for their lives.
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