Monday, October 18, 2010

A Week With Sarah Sundin

Review, Interview, and Giveaway!
This week's featured author is Sarah Sundin, author of A Distant Melody and A Memory Between Us, Books 1 and 2 in The Wings of Glory series. Sarah's offered a copy of A Memory Between Us to one of my readers. Today's post includes my review, and Thursday's post will share a short Q & A with Sarah.

You might recall Sarah's visit earlier this year, when she shared her thoughts on writing and A Distant Melody. If you happened to miss those posts, click here.


A Memory Between Us finds Ruth Doherty and Jack Novak serving their country during World War 2. Both stationed in England, ace pilot Jack and conscientious nurse Ruth seem to have little in common. But when Jack is injured and becomes a patient in Ruth's ward, their futures begin to intertwine.

Ruth's tough outer shell conceals her need for friends and support. She can't seem to outrun her past and the shame that goes with it. Despite her challenges, her goal is to do her job well; her younger brothers and sisters in the states rely on her income. Jack's good looks give the impression that he has it all together. What could he possibly have to learn? A lot, it turns out, and both he and Ruth face trials that could make or break their character and integrity. As they get to know each other, their relationship is tested again and again. Do they have a future together? Only time will tell.

I marveled at Sarah's ability to tell this story in such an engaging and intricate way. The flight scenes with Jack and his crew are excellent. The research that was required to paint such a realistic picture was clearly extensive. Sarah accomplished quite a feat and tells a wonderful story. I enjoyed A Distant Melody and had hoped that A Memory Between Us was just as good. It was!

One thought - In A Memory Between Us, Sarah deals with an episode of physical abuse. I think that she handled it tactfully; it's an important element for the story. But you may want to preview the book before handing it over to your teens.

Sarah Sundin is among my new favorite authors. I can't wait till her next book comes out. Join us on Thursday, won't you, when she gives us a sneak peek at Book 3.

Giveaway Details - Please read carefully.
  • Leave a comment to this post, include your email address like so: karenelange(at)gmail(dot)com. Entries without email address are not eligible.
  • Receive an extra entry by becoming a follower, or by reminding me that you already follow.
  • Receive a bonus entry by posting about this giveaway on your blog, Facebook and/or Twitter. Please be sure and comment telling me so.
  • Deadline to enter is midnight Eastern Standard Time, Saturday October 23, 2010. Winner will be  notified via email and will have 36 hours to respond. Winner to be announced on Monday's post.       
  • This is open to US residents only. My apologies to those who follow outside the US.                                                                                                   
Have you ever read historical fiction set during World War 2? What do you think we can learn from historical fiction?

See you Thursday!



  1. Hi Karen - I have a number of WW2 favorites: By Leon Uris -- Exodus, Mila 18 and Armageddon. By Herman Wouk -- The Winds of War.

    Well-researched historical fiction personalizes the war and the people who lived through it in a way nonfiction texts cannot.

    Ms. Sundin's novel sounds like a great read. I'll look forward to reading about book 3.

    I am a follower. My email is writinginthebuff(at)hotmail(dot)com.

  2. Karen - thanks for your wonderful review. I'm so glad you enjoyed Jack & Ruth's story. And I agree this novel is "PG-13" - parents should read first and decide if it's appropriate for their teen.

    Lisa - The Winds of War seriously interfered with studying for finals my freshman year of college :)This book made WWII come alive to me.

  3. I haven't read much in the way of WWII fiction even though I'm a post-war baby; one among the many "boomers". It's never really been of kean interest to me, though I'm not sure why since so much of our history, not to mention "The Greatest Generation" is rooted there.

    It's always great fun to read your take on various works. I always want to read them all!


  4. Hi Karen.. I have not read much WWII fiction. But the title of this book A Memory Between Us sounds intriguing. Thanks for another wonderful review.

  5. Super review, Karen. These books sound great. I love historical fiction. I even have one that I'm going to write about my grandfather.

    Have you ever read, Secrets, by Dorothy Hoobler? Or Behind the Bedroom Wall, by Laura E. Williams?

    I am glad this book (A Memory Between Us)told it like it is. Sounds like a fantastic read.

    You know I'm a follower and I will blog about it too.


    Have a great week, my friend. :)

  6. I haven't read an historical fiction set in WW2 for a long time. I believe the last war historical fiction I read was Sophie's Choice! But you've really peaked my interest with this one particularly due to Jack being a pilot. I'm not sure if I can enter being Canadian but here's my address anyways!

  7. This book sounds like just the kind of thing I enjoy reading. I love historical fiction with a romantic element in it. WWII is an especially poignant time period with the sadness, tremendous loss of life and destruction. For people to find love during this time is truly special.

  8. Great review! I do want to read this book!

    +1 I am a new follower now:)


  9. I agree with Karen. I've read these books and highly recommend them. Ms. Sundin is currently my favorite author and I look forward to Book 3. She handles sensitive situations with care. You get enough information without being dragged through the mud yourself. She leaves you with redeeming hope. Teens need to learn, somewhere, that certain behaviors can land them in risky situations with consequences they never imagined.

  10. Hi Karen,

    Thanks for the excellent review!

    I can't enter the drawing - way too many things on plate. But I still wanted to pop over and say hi!

  11. Lisa,
    You're right, it does personalize it. As a writer, I'm interested in people's stories - where they've been and how they came to where they are. Got you on the list!

    I enjoyed reading it and I appreciate the opportunity to share it with others. Thanks a bunch! :)

    Never thought of it that way. So many events shaped our country's history, yet we often know so little about them.

    You are welcome. There are so many good books out there, aren't there? :)

    Thanks so much! You're such a great cheerleader!
    Appreciate it greatly:)

    I hadn't read any in a while either till Sarah's books. It's been a good experience!

    Yes, I suppose it is a bittersweet time in that respect. Didn't live through it but I imagine that Sarah captured the emotion well.

    Thanks, and thanks for becoming a follower. Added your name ot the list!

    Well said. I think it's a tricky balance, especially for teens. Too much info gives too much for the imagination to work with. It depends on the individual, too.


  12. Shannon,
    Thanks for stopping in! I know how crazy your schedule's been. Always good to see you:)

  13. My favorite WW2 story is Michael Phillips "Secret of the Rose" series. So great!

    This was great, Karen! Thanks!

  14. What a great review! I love the cover art. I found myself just gazing at it. My email is whiteplatonicdreams(@)

  15. Great review! I'm always looking for some historical fiction to read. I'm in: lydiakang (at) yahoo (dot) com.

  16. Aw, shucks... I really want to read this book, as I loved A Melody Between Us, but I'm in Canada. I love historical fiction and Sundin definately excels at using her research to make the past come alive. Whoever wins the book will really like it.

  17. Yay for Sarah Sundin! I really enjoy her books. Please enter me into this giveaway.


    I posted a note on my facebook page about this giveaway.

  18. Kristen,
    Hey good to see you! Sorry I missed your debut last week. I've not read that series by Phillips. Will have to check it out.

    Thanks! The cover design is nice and it so fits the story. Put your name on the list:)

    Lydia K.,
    Thank you:) That's right, you're a historical fiction fan like me. Got you on the list!

    I'm sorry! Stay tuned for a giveaway later this year that I'll open to Canada, okay? Thanks for becoming a follower!

    Lydia M.,
    She's a great writer! Glad you stopped by:) Added your name to the list.


  19. I've never read a historical fiction novel in World War 2, but I imagine I'd be able to learn a little a bit of everything considering I've never really paied ttention to history.

    I'd love to win the novel!!! My email is jenniferdaiker(at)gmail(dot)come. I follow you and I plan to add you to my sidebar!

  20. Hi Karen -

    Thanks for the review. I read Sarah's first book, and the second one should arrive on my doorstep any day now.

    Susan :)

  21. I'm a follower: jacksonlee51(at)aol(dot)com

    I can't recall any WWII fiction that I've read, although Farewell to Arms set in WWI is one of my favorites. I like to read historical fiction to capture an essence of the time. It's like going back in a time machine and being there.

    Tossing It Out

  22. Jen,
    I've learned a lot about history by reading historical fiction. I like the depth it provides in that way. Thanks for adding me to your sidebar! Added you to the list:)

    You are welcome! Hope you enjoy it. I'm guessing that you will:)

    I agree about the time machine thing; it really does give you a feel for the era. I think we've much to learn, not only in historical facts but in character as well. Added your name to the list!


  23. Hi Karen .. no I haven't read anything or much about the War fiction or otherwise .. just something I'm not sure what I feel about .. and other influences.

    But now you've introduced me to Sarah .. I'll be reading her books at some stage ..

    Great post .. thanks - Hilary

  24. I don't generally read that genre, but you've made it sound interesting. I did read the Bodie Thoene books written about the Jews and Israel back in that era.

    I follow. I have an email.


  25. I've heard nothing but applause for Sarah and her wonderful writing. Please count me in; I'm a follower. Thank you so much!


    I believe we can learn to understand how people thought in different eras by reading historicals. It grows compassion in our heart, don't you think?

  26. Hilary,
    Well perhaps this is something you might enjoy. Sarah is a great writer! Good to see you:)

    Well, maybe you'll win and we''ll get you to branch out a bit more:) Not that you seem to suffer...but you might enjoy this time period. Added you to the list!

    Got you on the list! Yes, the buzz is that Sarah is a good writer. I agree:) And yes, I do think historical fiction shows us a lot about people, and their timeless struggles and characteristics too.


  27. Great review. I'm going to tell my husband about this book, because he teaches WW2, and I'm going to tell my friend who writes and loves historical fiction. Thanks!

  28. Historical fiction is just about my favorite! I love identifying with history- not just learning facts.

  29. Looks like an excellent book, one I'd like to read (and I teach WW2 history for a junior college). bald (@) pld (dot) com. And I am a follower. wb

  30. Great review Karen! Sounds like an awesome book! This is the 3rd review I have read about this book and everyone seems to really like it.

    I am a follower! sanctifiedtogether(at)gmail(dot)com


  31. Sarah, it seems like just yesterday I read the reviews of your first book. Congratulations on number two!

    I haven't read any books set in WWII, but I would love to read yours. I've seen so many good things about them.

    Karen, thanks for sharing and please add me to the contest! jrkemer(at)charter(dot)net

  32. Karen,
    Thanks for your review. It sounds like a great book. I love flight scenes.
    I appreciate the warning about the subject matter.
    Hope you are having a blessed day!

  33. Elana,
    By all means, pass the word! Thanks!

    Me too. I like the scope it brings to the reading experience.

    It truly is an interesting read. Got you on the list!

    Yes, many great reviews. I'm excited for Sarah! Put your name on the list:)

    You are so welcome! Your name is on the list!

    If you like flight scenes then you may like this one. It's well done. :)

    Thanks so much!


  34. i enjoyed this posting...have read sarah's first novel..and loved it...thanks for the opportunity to read her latest story.

    kmkuka at yahoo dot com

  35. Karen K.,
    Thanks for coming by!


Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts. Have a blessed day!