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4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5 stars
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on 16 January 2012
Really enjoyed this book. It was fast moving with lots of different stories interwoven throughout. The only thing that spoilt it a bit was the vast number of grammatical errors in the translation to ebook! Often had to re-read a passage to work out what it meant, with extra words or words missing or in the wrong order - over and over again.
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on 19 June 2012
This is a rattling good story, following the lives of several women, thrown together by war. Having heard my mother's stories of wartime hardships, I found it very interesting and absorbing. What spoiled the book for me was the appalling proofing: words missing, parts of words missing, parts of sentences missing. At times it was so bad that it was difficult to make out what it should have been and it got worse the further into the book you read. It was as if the person given this novel to check gave it only a cursory look at the beginning and got more apathetic as the pages went by. Not good enough. I'm sure the author will be pretty cross that her work is being sold in this poor state.
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on 22 June 2012
I have to agree with the reviewer Nicola Taunt. This book is appallingly written and edited. This is a shame as it probably has the potential for a reasonable story.

Some of the sentences don't actually make sense. The grammar and spelling would shame my 8 year old niece. The formatting is also very bad - though this may only relate to the Kindle edition.

I have only reached chapter 5, and the story hasn't really begun. Unfortunately I don't know if I can persevere with this book as I am becoming invreasingly irritated by the poor writing style and bad grammar. I don't understand why this book was published in this state.

Luckily I only paid 77p!

Update...........I did persevere with the book and did enjoy the story, if farfetched
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on 30 January 2012
I agree with the reviewer who says this is a disappointing book. The events are so unlikely as to be ludicrous. The characters are stereotypes and the action stilted and not credible.
The book is riddled with spelling mistakes, grammatical mistakes, and poor editing. This makes it even more annoying to read.
Luckily it was only 77p! Just about worth it.
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on 14 January 2012
This novel has the potential to be good, but is let down by poor writing and even worse editing. The author repeatedly resorts to simply telling us about the action, rather than showing us. Too many times, we find out about major points through a one-sided phone call or by one character telling the others what's happened elsewhere. The plot is also riddled with unlikely coincidences or wildly improbable events.

This book would also have been improved by much tighter editing. It's full of spelling errors, grammatical mistakes and suffers from poor formatting. A good editor would also have cut down the clunky exposition. It's a shame that so many things spoiled this book. I do wonder how this got published in the state that it's in.
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on 10 May 2010
Brilliant story, it weaves a spell, mixing WW11 and modern times, romance, sadness and revenge taking you back and forth, which made putting the book down to do other things extremely hard, as you just needed to know what happens next. It kept me on tenterhooks right to the end, and what a surprising finale, not at all what I expected.
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on 10 March 2012
I enjoyed the story in this book, which is well conceived and written, with likeable characters. It makes for an easy read and I would recommend it, with one reservation; it doesn't appear to have been proof read at any stage! Pages seem oddly formatted for Kindle, with chapters appearing half way down the page (odd as it appears to have been published directly by Amazon), and the book is riddled with incoherent sentences that are badly punctuated, misspelled and often missing pronouns and even verbs. You'd usually expect to spot one or two bloopers in the entirety of a book, but there is at least one per page in this one, which makes it extremely difficult to get into the book properly, as it interrupts the flow of writing while you constantly try to piece together the intended meaning. In conclusion - a good read, needlessly spoiled by careless proofreading. Understand it's a cheapie but it's also a bestseller - not a quality edition!
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on 6 October 2013
I should have known I would hate this book the moment the author started going on about the museums she had seen in London and how everyone should know what London went through in the Blitz. Erm... Even school children in Britain understand what Londoners had to live through. So thank you nice American lady for assuming we all need her education on one of the most famous and defining moments of British civilian history.

Then there's the characters. How the devil could anyone even understand , let alone warm too, a woman who steals another woman's fiancé just so she can be closer to the man she actually loves. This didn't make her deep and three dimensional. This made her annoying and teeth grinding. Francis applying to part of SOE? Whatever. Francis sent into France with a certain female condition? Utterly dis-credible.

There are also plot lines that just get abandoned. At one point the big emphasis is on rescuing two little Jewish girls but suddenly one complication happens and that's it: sorry Jewish girls , you may have miraculously escaped through Nazi occupied France and magically found transport to the Sussex Coast but now it's all in vain.

And this Sussex Coast business is silly too. You can tell the author looked at a map and thought 'oh England is really small so places in this area of the Sussex Coast must all be in walking distance of each other, England being so small and all!' No towns within a short walking distance of Brighton are on the London to Brighton mainline. There are only two towns that could fit the authors description of the location. I live in one of them, and there is no way smuggler tunnels would stretch that far inland or that the characters could walk to Brighton from in a morning. The smuggler tunnels are the least credible part however. Again, she must have thought 'ah England has lots of history with smuggling, so let's stick some tunnels from Brighton' ....erm, Brighton is flat. You're thinking of Seaford love. The town along the coast with a dark smuggler history and CLIFFS.

I read the whole book mistakenly thinking the characters might get less stereotyped, or even a bit more likeable. I was wrong. So very very wrong
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on 6 July 2007
Once I'd started reading, I just couldn't stop - great characters, cleverly interwoven plot lines and fascinating historical details. Highly recommended
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on 23 May 2016
I really like this book and thankfully appear to have downloaded a copy that must have been 'sorted out' since the scathing reviews posted in 2012 about it's poor editing. Naturally, it still retains the language and spelling influences of the American author; just as I would expect my English ones to if living in America!

The opening chapters may throw you a little as it is not apparent just why it switches about between different people in different countries. But stay with it and all will become intriguingly and emotionally clear. Helen Bryan has engineered a very clever story; using poetic license to set the scene for her heroines and their families in a village in East Sussex, during World War Two.

I love her confident and fluent writing and really admire the obvious depth of research she did to create a really credible and absorbing story like this. Unlike many other reviewers, I thought that the ending was the icing on the cake and a stroke of genious for a way of neatly tying up the loose ends.
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