Long Way Home

Posted September 15, 2022 by thebeccafiles in / 0 Comments

Long Way HomeLong Way Home by Lynn Austin
Published by Tyndale House Publishers on June 21, 2022
Genres: Fiction / Christian / Historical, Fiction / Historical / World War II, Fiction / Romance / Historical / 20th Century
Pages: 400
Format: Paperback
Rating: four-stars

In this gripping portrait of war and its aftermath from bestselling author Lynn Austin, a young woman searches for the truth her childhood friend won’t discuss after returning from World War II, revealing a story of courage, friendship, and faith.

Peggy Serrano couldn’t wait for her best friend to come home from the war. But the Jimmy Barnett who returns is much different from the Jimmy who left, changed so drastically by his experience as a medic in Europe that he can barely function. When he attempts the unthinkable, his parents check him into the VA hospital. Peggy determines to help the Barnetts unravel what might have happened to send their son over the edge. She starts by contacting Jimmy’s war buddies, trying to identify the mysterious woman in the photo they find in Jimmy’s belongings.

Seven years earlier, sensing the rising tide against her people, Gisela Wolff and her family flee Germany aboard the passenger ship St. Louis, bound for Havana, Cuba. Gisela meets Sam Shapiro on board and the two fall quickly in love. But the ship is denied safe harbor and sent back to Europe. Thus begins Gisela’s perilous journey of exile and survival, made possible only by the kindness and courage of a series of strangers she meets along the way, including one man who will change the course of her life.

Baker Book House|Amazon|ChristianBook

My Review:

Not that I haven’t enjoyed multiple books by Lynn Austin over the years, but her WWII novels she’s written recently have been rather remarkable and I was excited to get my hands on a copy of this one. 

Gisela’s timeline had me gripped and I simply needed to know what happened to her. I knew the two timelines would ultimately have to meet, but I had no way of knowing how that would happen or what it would cost the characters (or who would even survive). But Gisela’s journey made me feel all kinds of emotions, especially anger at the roadblocks that were constantly set in front of her that left her vulnerable to the danger around every corner. 

Peggy’s timeline I have to admit struggled to hold my attention and led to a saggy middle. I think it mostly has to do with Peggy herself and that I couldn’t help but constantly question her motivation in her relationships. My heart went out to Jimmy though, and it made me so angry to see all he had to endure because the mental health professionals had no idea what they were doing in the time and how much damage they were ultimately inflicting on their patients. 

I won’t spoil anything but the ending of this one was superbly done. I liked that the author made a point in this novel that while the war itself may have ended in 1945, repairing the damage and healing from the trauma and losses was only beginning. There was a lot that was hard to read in this novel, but it’s also necessary in order to understand the full price of evil and its effects on history.

Another thought-provoking read, and I can’t wait to see what the author comes up with next!

*I purchased a copy of this book. Thoughts and opinions are mine alone.


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