ARC Review: An Enemy Like Me by Teri M Brown

Book Details:

Author: Teri M Brown
Release Date: 
24th January 2023
Series:
Genre: Historical Fiction, Literary Fiction, Generational Fiction
Format: E-book
Pages: 328
Publisher: Atmosphere Press
Blurb:
How does a man show his love – for country, for heritage, for family – during a war that sets the three at odds? What sets in motion the necessity to choose one over the other? How will this choice change everything and everyone he loves?
Jacob Miller, a first-generation American, grew up in New Berlin, a small German immigrant town in Ohio where he endured the Great Depression, met his wife, and started a family. Though his early years were not easy, Jacob believes he is headed toward his ‘happily ever after’ until a friend is sent to an internment camp for enemy combatants, and the war lands resolutely on his doorstep.

In An Enemy Like Me, Teri M. Brown uses the backdrop of World War II to show the angst experienced by Jacob, his wife, and his four-year-old son as he leaves for and fights in a war he did not create. She explores the concepts of xenophobia, intrafamily dynamics, and the recognition that war is not won and lost by nations, but by ordinary men and women and the families who support them.

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

An Enemy Like Me by Teri M Brown is a beautiful historical fiction novel that tells the story of Jacob Miller and how being a true patriot brings him face-to-face with a truth that can shatter anyone’s world: that he is more similar to the enemy that he’d been fighting with than the people he was fighting for. An Enemy Like Me is a beautiful exploration of 2nd, 3rd and even 4th generation immigrants who face discrimination based on their looks, family origins, accent, etc. albeit in different intensity at different times in history.

This story is about a soldier who is trying his best to fight for the country he currently lives in, yet battling emotions, imagining that his previous generations were part of the country that he was fighting with and how this has a profound impact on him. This book also explores the perspective on war from different generational views, providing readers insights into how different people, at other points in time, think about the same historic events and issues that had a great impact on their lives.

An Enemy Like Me explores a lot of themes which will resonate with most readers of historical, literary fiction and war fiction genres. So I’d like to recommend it to all the readers as this book has a lot to offer to all of its readers.


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Book Review: Murder Under A Bridal Moon: A 1930s Mona Moon Mystery by Abigail Keam

Book Details:

Author: Abigail Keam
Release Date: 
27th May 2019
Series: A Mona Moon Mystery (book #10)
Genre: Historical Mystery
Format: E-book 
Pages: 268 pages
Publisher: Worker Bee Press 
Blurb:
Mona Moon is planning her wedding to Robert Farley, Duke of Brynelleth, when her preparations go haywire after one of her maids is found murdered. With just days before the blessed event, unwanted guests invade Moon Manor throwing a wrench into Mona’s plans and making it more difficult to seek the truth. Now Robert is a suspect in the maid’s murder. A missing gold brooch and twenty five-dollar bills are the only clues Mona has to find the murderer. She must clear Robert from suspicion or he will call off the wedding, saying he refuses to taint Mona’s good name. Can she discover the killer before the wedding, or will the murderer witness the breakup between Mona and Robert? Was that the intention all along? 

Review

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Murder Under A Bridal Moon: A 1930s Mona Moon Mystery by Abigail Keam is a cosy historical mystery that will take you on a fun rollercoaster of ups and downs of interesting twists and turns.

This book is a well-written mystery in an ongoing series but it can very well be read as a stand-alone novel. At least, that’s the impression that I got while reading it, since the characterisation was rich and well-developed, I didn’t think that I was missing out on anything.

The story begins with a murder and pulls the readers in from the beginning hooking them for good till the very end where the ending blows the mind just like any reader of mystery might expect, but what really makes this book an excellent and phenomenal read is the vivid descriptions, rich settings, fully-fleshed-out characters and a brilliantly executed plot that has been well-thought out and perfectly plotted. Being a long-time reader of the mystery genre, I could not find a single fault in the book’s carefully woven mystery.

I’d strongly recommend this book to all mystery readers especially those who like their mysteries set in cosy historical settings.


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Book Review: Iberian Claim by Vincent Casciani

Book Details:

Author: Vincent Casciani 
Release Date: 
23rd August 2021
Series:
Genre: Historical Fiction, Historical Critique, Spanish Fiction
Format: E-book 
Pages: 196 pages
Publisher: New Degree Press
Blurb:
“I put down the pen and set aside the paper. I have served my time.”
The Spanish Empire’s conquest is marked by blood and gold. Alvar Núñez, soldier-turned-administrator, knows little else, and finds himself dissatisfied by the trappings of an ordinary life. When the opportunity comes to seek gold and glory in the New World, he jumps at the chance to revive his old passions.
It’s a shame, then, that his eight-year journey through the Gulf Region reduces him to a meager shell of a man. He must adapt and find compassion for the natives around him or die.
Iberian Claim, Vincent Casciani’s breakout novel, details the grueling account of Alvar Núñez’ interaction with the various Native American tribes inhabiting La Florida. His conviction is degraded, his worldview is overturned, and his belief in Spanish superiority is tested at every turn.

Review

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The Iberian Claim by Vincent Casciani is a historical fiction critique of Spanish colonialism. This book was impressively educational and provided a (much-needed) fresh perspective on Spanish colonialism, a subject that, in my opinion, is not much discussed, at least in the British colonised countries like India as we spend an awful lot of time only studying and educating ourselves and the future generations about the British colonisation and that’s it! Most of our history books are only full of the valors of the British and the ones who supported them but not about any other colonies or how they came to be and what happened to them.

So reading about Spanish colonisation has always been a subject of interest to me and this book came as a breath of fresh air with its unique perspective and a comprehensive narrative on the subject. Reading The Iberian Claim has clarified many doubts I’ve harboured over the years and many questions I’ve carried in my mind regarding Spanish colonialism and the Spanish Empire’s way of conduct on the whole.

The prose in the book is very neat, crisp and smooth and had a nice flow that made reading it a very smooth experience making it a very quick and enjoyable read. I’d strongly recommend this book to all history buffs, especially to readers who take an interest in Spanish colonialism.


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