August 06, 2020

#BookReview: Lovely War by Julie Berry






Synopsis: A sweeping, multi-layered romance with a divine twist, by the Printz Honor-winning author of The Passion of Dolssa, set in the perilous days of World Wars I and II.

It's 1917, and World War I is at its zenith when Hazel and James first catch sight of each other at a London party. She's a shy and talented pianist; he's a newly minted soldier with dreams of becoming an architect. When they fall in love, it's immediate and deep--and cut short when James is shipped off to the killing fields.

Aubrey Edwards is also headed toward the trenches. A gifted musician who's played Carnegie Hall, he's a member of the 15th New York Infantry, an all-African-American regiment being sent to Europe to help end the Great War. Love is the last thing on his mind. But that's before he meets Colette Fournier, a Belgian chanteuse who's already survived unspeakable tragedy at the hands of the Germans.

Thirty years after these four lovers' fates collide, the Greek goddess Aphrodite tells their stories to her husband, Hephaestus, and her lover, Ares, in a luxe Manhattan hotel room at the height of World War II. She seeks to answer the age-old question: Why are Love and War eternally drawn to one another? But her quest for a conclusion that will satisfy her jealous husband uncovers a multi-threaded tale of prejudice, trauma, and music and reveals that War is no match for the power of Love.


Goodreads
Amazon

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐
My Review: When I started this one I was so excited!! I love mythology and this story set like the stage with themes of entwining romance just seemed right for me.  However, sadly around 200 pages this one just started dragging so much.  I had fallen in love with the characters but after so many pages and so much weaving I started loosing interest in the story.   This could have been such a great story. But for me it was far too slow. 











Review

"Julie Berry pens an utter delight in Lovely War, an effervescent confection of a novel filled with humor, tragedy, romance, and myth. Easily one of the best novels I have read all year!" —Kate Quinn, New York Times bestselling author of The Alice Network
 
"This fascinating, gorgeously written novel of World War I will grip you and remind you that the greatest danger is closing our hearts to love." —Nancy Werlin, National Book Award honoree and New York Timesbestseller
 
“Julie Berry writes the past as if she lived it.” —Jennifer Donnelly, New York Times bestselling author 

★ “Scheherazade has nothing on Berry . . . An unforgettable romance so Olympian in scope, human at its core, and lyrical in its prose that it must be divinely inspired.” —Kirkus Reviewsstarred review

★ "Berry’s evocative novel . . . gains steam as the stories flesh out. Along the way, it suggests that while war and its devastation cycles through history, the forces of art and love remain steady, eternal, and life-sustaining." —Publishers Weekly, starred review
★ “Poignant…will make readers, by turns, laugh, cry, and swoon.” —The Horn Bookstarred review

★ 
“Proves again that Berry is one of our most ambitious writers. Happily for us, that ambition so often results in great success.” —Booklist, starred review

★ 
"Julie Berry [is] a modern master of historical fiction for young readers. . . Berry’s superb research and attention to detail are perfectly suited to the layers of this story of love in wartime . . . [a] romantic yet unflinching look at teenagers coming of age during World War I." —Bookpage, starred review
★ "
This poignant novel will make readers, by turns, laugh, cry, and swoon." —The Horn Book, starred review

★ 
"Readers will be swept away by Berry’s lyrical prose." —School Library Journalstarred review
"When the hurly-burly's done, and the battle's lost and won, does Love conquer War? The answer is never in doubt, but it's a pleasure to have it confirmed by a celestially inspired storyteller." —The New York Times Book Review
"Leavened by wit and informed by history, Lovely War is a romantic and inventive story from its dramatic start to its laughter- and tear-spangled ending." —The Wall Street Journal

"Stunning . . . gives ordinary lives the sheen of the epic." —Refinery29

"[A] triumphant piece of historically focused fiction. . . a moving, brutal, and yes, lovely, story of the ways in which people find hope in a world gone mad" —BCCB Reviews

"Berry’s accomplished talent for developing all elements of plot—character, tone, and mood—in addition to her fresh writing style makes this title a compelling page turner." —School Library Connection

About the Author

Julie Berry is the author of the 2017 Printz Honor and Los Angeles Times Book Prize shortlisted novel The Passion of Dolssa, the Carnegie and Edgar shortlisted All the Truth That's in Me, and many other acclaimed middle grade novels and picture books. She holds a BS from Rensselaer in communication and an MFA from Vermont College. She lives in Southern California with her family.










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