“Rose Moyer Justice
August 2, 1944
Hamble, Southampton, Hampshire
Notes for an Accident Report.
I just got back from Celia Forester’s Funeral. I’m supposed to be writing up an official report for the Tempest she flew into the ground, since she’s obviously not going to write it herself and I saw it happen. And also because I feel responsible. I know it wasn’t my fault – I really do know that now. But I briefed her. We both had Tempests to deliver and I’d flown one a couple of times before. Celia hadn’t.”
Rose Justice is a young america air transport pilot delivering planes and taxiing pilots for the RAF in England during the Second World War. At the end of the Summer in 1944 she has seen some of the horrors of war on English soil and those are bad enough. A budding poet and writer she puts her feelings into words, but soon those words will stop, at least for a little while, and Rose will see the evil side of war; even worse than the blown out windows and toppled buildings in London.
Oh wow! there are no words for how powerful this book is and I know my review will not do it justice, anyone thinking about reading Rose Under Fire needs to stop um’ing and ah’ing and get out there and buy it now.
I haven’t read Elizabeth Wein’s first book, Code Name Verity, despite the amazing things I had heard about it. Now I will be going back and fixing that mistake because Rose Under Fire hit every spot and made me realise that everyones hype about CNV was justified. The story is amazing, its so powerful and they way it is written just makes you want to carry on reading.
The whole book is just incredible, whilst reading I got very much invested in the characters, I needed to know exactly what happened to them by the end of the book, I needed Rose to be herself again after the horrors of part two, I needed everyone to be ok. But not everyone could be ok, that was the way of war and it wouldn’t have been realistic if the bad things didn’t happen. There were parts of the book which honestly made me gag, parts that made me well up, and parts that made me laugh out loud, but throughout all of those parts, there was a book which hit all the right spots and which I loved.
During my time at college, and this wont surprise anyone who has done A Level English Literature, we studied a module on war literature and some of the books I read then were my favourite books I’ve read for school, college and university. This book honestly would not have been out of play on that set list and I would absolutely love it if it was, it tells of the pains and horrors of war, there is poetry within the novel and the story is amazing. Although fiction you could tell that the author had done a lot of research and I even enjoyed reading the afterword which I usually skimread in books if I can get away with it. I absolutely loved the touch of adding the factual Rabbits’ names to the title page of the book and it made me well up again when I found that out.
I am now going to go and find myself a copy of Code Name Verity and hit myself with it for not reading sooner. The way Elizabeth Wein writes is really amazing and you can just get lost in the words, especially with a character like Rose. I will definitely be reading anything else she brings out.
Rose Under Fire was published on June 3rd by Electric Monkey. My copy was sent in exchange for an honest review from the publisher.
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