Readers' Favorite

May 2, 2017

Great Historical Fiction: Goodnight from London by Jennifer Robson

by Susan Roberts

May 2017, William Morrow; 978-0062675576
ebook, audio, print (400 pages); historical fiction
I love reading great historical fiction and Goodnight from London is one of the best that I've read about London during WWII.

Amazon affiliate links are used in this post. A free book was provided for this review.

From the back cover:  In the summer of 1940, ambitious young American journalist Ruby Sutton gets her big break: the chance to report on the European war as a staff writer for Picture Weekly newsmagazine in London. It’s an opportunity not only to prove herself, but also to start fresh in a city and country that know nothing of her humble origins. But life in besieged Britain tests Ruby in ways she never imagined.

Although most of Ruby’s new colleagues welcome her, a few resent her presence, not only as an American but also as a woman. She is just beginning to find her feet, to feel at home in a country that is so familiar yet so foreign, when the bombs begin to fall.

As the nightly horror of the Blitz stretches unbroken into weeks and months, Ruby tries to remain an objective observer. When she loses everything but her life, and must depend upon the kindness of strangers, she learns for the first time the depth and measure of true friendship—and what it is to love a man who is burdened by secrets that aren’t his to share.

My review:  Jennifer Robson's previous three books have focused on WWI and this is her first book about WWII.  It's a wonderful book about London told from a woman's perspective.

The main character, Ruby Sutton, is a strong woman who is trying to make a success of her life as a reporter despite the resistance from some of the male reporters. When she is first assigned to London, she is quite shy and unsure of herself but as she gets more familiar with the city, she becomes the strong character that is seen in the rest of the book.

The author did a fantastic job of describing the Blitz and the way that the people felt while the bombs were dropping every night.  The reader can feel the characters' fear and despair during the bombings and the relief as they leave the shelters.  Ruby's reporting assignments gave the author a chance to show us different parts of England during the war and provided some very interesting human interest stories.

This novel has everything that I want in a good historical fiction book - a well-written book that shows that the author did considerable research on the subject, a strong main character - an extra bonus because this one is female, great friendships and a romance.  This is my favorite book by this author so far and I look forward to whatever she writes in the future.

Buy Goodnight from London at Amazon

About the Author:
Jennifer Robson first learned about the Great War from her father, acclaimed historian Stuart Robson, and later served as an official guide at the Canadian National War Memorial at Vimy Ridge, France. A former copy editor, she holds a doctorate in British economic and social history from the University of Oxford. She lives in Toronto, Canada, with her husband and young children. Goodnight from London was inspired by the wartime experiences of her grandmother.

Susan Roberts lives in North Carolina when she isn't traveling.  She and her husband enjoy traveling, gardening and spending time with their family and friends.  She reads almost anything (and the piles of books in her house prove that) but her favorite genres are Southern fiction, women's fiction and thrillers. Susan is a top 1% Goodreads Reviewer. You can connect with Susan on Facebook.

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  1. I just bought this book yesterday - can't wait to read it. Great review. I loved Robson's three WWI books as well. (She's Canadian as well)

  2. My Gram lived in Coventry, England during the Blitz and she told me how scary it was. I'd love to read this author's version of the events my Gram lived through!

    Thanks for being a part of the tour.