With Every Letter, Wings of the Nightingale Series #1
The story is absolutely fabulous!!
I'm not a huge romance novel person but I do love the WWII era and this book caught my eye. I was immediately enthralled with Mellie and Tom and their friends. Sarah Sundin has created such a beautiful story about two people who learn that their worth and value comes from God and His love and truth is all they need. It's a fantastic story!! Bravo to Sarah and a huge two thumbs up for this book!!
December 9, 2013
Mellie, a World War II flight nurse, agrees to write to a soldier to boost morale during the war. Their anonymous correspondence turns into a friendship, though they have never met. Both have a past that they do not wish to reveal. I thought this book was excellent and it is on my keeper shelf, as are the other books by this author.
August 24, 2013
Inspiring, fascinating read
As part of a moral boost in Sarah Sundin's WWII novel, "With Every Letter," nurses write anonymous pen pal letters to soldiers with whom they are paired. Through the program, two lonely people find a secure source of friendship that cannot be influenced by what otherwise holds them back - her exotic looks and foreign upbringing, and his suffering under the stigma of being the son of a famous murderer. Philomela Blake, known as Mellie, is threatened to lose her position as a med-evac nurse - one of the nurses who takes care of wounded soldiers on the flights to hospitals away from the front - if she cannot make friends and work as part of the team. As a lieutenant and lead engineer for building airports as the Americans push forward toward Italy, Tom McGilliver needs to be able to lead his men, but his position is also threatened by his lack of authority and respect from his men. Together, sharing insight on what works for them in the other's place of failure, they build each other up, both in confidence in themselves and in faith in God, never expecting that they would fall in love over their correspondence.
There is so much growth in this story as Mellie and Gill overcome their failings. In a plan to avoid becoming his father, Gill tries to lead by showering his men with kindness and compassion, rather than ruling by fear, like so many other officers. However, kindness only goes so far; he cannot actually control his men, and not just Gill suffers for it - other officers and their men have to pick up the slack. For an excellent example of authority, Mellie recommends that Gill look to Jesus. Yes, Jesus was full of compassion and kindness, but he was not afraid to rebuke and discipline, which is what Gill needs to work at.
Some of what the other nurses say about Mellie is harsh, but it still is true - she has closed herself off from friendship for fear of being hurt. Like Mellie, so often we're afraid to lay our hearts bare, afraid to be rejected, afraid to feel one more disappointment. But that attitude neither shows love nor receives love. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love (I John 4:18). Letting go of fear is hard work, and it takes a lot of practice. It is no guarantee we will not be hurt - is not Jesus hurt constantly by rejection also? - but it opens us to a much fuller ability to receive and share God's love.
This is an excellent novel, and I feel enriched having read it. The Christian lessons and advice are not just "stuck in" to make it a Christian book - it is an intgral part of the characters, and they live their faith, imperfect though they are. Their letters feel real but do not overpower the plot or interactions they have with their peers and each other. The historical details of the med-evac nurses are fascinating, as well as the exotic settings as the war progresses. Definitely worth 5 out of 5 stars!
August 18, 2013
Delightful Beginning to a New Series
HereÃ¢ÂÂs the deal: anonymous mail being sent between war nurses and soldiers. One of the nurses is a shy girl, whoÃ¢ÂÂs always been a little different and never had any good friends. One of the soldiers is liked well-enough, but has some real problems and a dark ancestry that shadows over his present life. With a story like thatÃ¢ÂÂ¦whatÃ¢ÂÂs not to love? I donÃ¢ÂÂt know, because I loved this book! It was a very unique concept, with the story told from both sides and the letters that were sent as well. A great setting, characters who were truly lovely, and just enough angst to make you want to find out what happens. Once I get a hard copy of this book, itÃ¢ÂÂll definitely be going on my keepers shelf! I canÃ¢ÂÂt wait for the next one, On Distant Shores, which I today discovered focuses on a favorite character from THIS book.
May 17, 2013