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by Donna Huber For the A to Z Challenge, I discussed different book genres/categories. Each day, I gave a few details about the genre/catego...

June 23, 2015

Review: In the Blood of the Greeks by Mary D. Brooks

by Donna Huber

In the Blood of the Greeks

April 16, 1941Thunder boomed overhead and across the valley as the night sky was lit up with exploding artillery shells in the hills surrounding the small farming town of Larissa, Greece. This once sleepy town was the scarred battlefield between the Allies who were defending the town and the oncoming juggernaut that was the German army.

The Review

When the author pitch In the Blood of the Greeks to me, she sent this description:

In the Blood of the Greeks is set against the backdrop of World War II. The novel begins in a most troublesome period of human history, where subjugated by the might of Nazi Germany, two women meet under extraordinary circumstances. This is the story of Eva Muller, the daughter of a German Major, in command of the occupying force in Larissa, Greece in 1942. Through the intervention of the village priest she meets Zoe Lambros, a young Greek woman with vengeance in her heart and a faith in God that has been shattered by the death of her family. Eva and Zoe must work together and overcome their hatred for each other while facing down their own demons. Hatred turns to friendship as they find common ground while helping Jews escape from the Nazis.

I love WWII novels, and very pleased to find one that took a different look a the era. I had not read about the Greek Resistance and thought this would an interesting read. She mentioned that it was a historical romance, and perhaps I should have inquired more why there was not a male character in the summary. In stead I thought maybe the romance was a minor plot and something that impacted the friendship between Eva and Zoe (historical romance is a bit more popular than plain historical fiction).

Imagine my surprise when I went to Amazon when I couldn't remember if it had been published yet and saw in caps LESBIAN LOVE STORY. I was about a third of the way through the novel at this point and my only thought was "Someone's going to be disappointed" and I sincerely hoped it wasn't me. I clearly state in my review policy that I don't read LGBT fiction (I don't mind there being a gay character, but I don't want it to be a major plot point nor do I care to read a romance).

So what did I think? I loved the story when it was focused on the Greek resistance and life in occupied Greece. I loved a number of characters - Father H, Henri, Eva and Zoe. I didn't care much when the story focused on the growing attraction between Zoe and Eva.

So who was disappointed? I think readers who are expecting a lesbian love story will be disappointed. I think there was better chemistry between Zoe and Henri than Zoe and Eva. There was something stilted about the "romantic" thoughts and interactions between the two woman.

I think it would have been better if Brooks had stuck with an adventure story about friendship and loyalty. I would continue to read the series should that be all it was, but no matter how much I care for the characters I just don't think I can continue with the story line.

In the Blood of the Greeks was well written aside for the romantic interaction of Zoe and Eva. It was an interesting story about the occupation and state of Greece in the 1940s. I would have liked for there to have been more about the war and occupation.

Buy In the Blood of the Greeks at Amazon

Book info:
available formats: ebook and paperback (418 pages)
published: March 2015 by AUSXIP Publishing
ISBN13: 9780994294500
genres: historical romance
source: author
read: May/June 2015

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  1. I also am intrigued by WWII stories, especially those with a unique twist. Thanks for sharing...and here's mine: “THE NEW NEIGHBOR”

  2. I haven't read much about the Greek Resistance, but I obviously should get moving on that. I enjoy reading books set during and around WWII also. This book sounds interesting. I am sorry the romance portion didn't work for you. I don't mind romance or LGBT fiction, but chemistry between the two love interests is a must. Otherwise, it isn't very believable.

  3. It sounds like our tastes sync up on this. I'd find the Greek underground to be the interesting part of the story, but the lesbian romance doesn't interest me. It's sad when an author has an otherwise great story but adds an element that detracts from that.

  4. I'm not a fan of this type a book, so I wouldn't keep reading.

  5. I don't know much about the Greeks in WWII either. Not sure this would be a book I'd pick up, but you never know.

  6. I like WWII stories... don't know much about the Greeks during that time period though. I'd give this a little longer before deciding.

  7. For some reason, I can't read stories set during wartimes. weird I know. Enjoy Donna

  8. I do like wartime stories and like you I haven't come across any that concentrate on the Greeks - it is always good to find a book with a new take on this period.

  9. It sounds good although I don't usually read WWII stories.

  10. Thanks for the review. I, too, enjoy WWII stories, and like you, I hadn't heard of the Greek resistance. I'm hesitant to read something billed prominently as a Lesbian Love Story...not because I dislike stories with gay people, but while I don't mind a little romance in a story, straight or gay, I don't want it to be a major portion of the story. From your review, it sounds like this one might not be as billed and I might enjoy it, so I'll take a look before deciding.