Lines of Courage
by Jennifer A. Nielsen
* * * * * Stars (Amazing!)
One wrong turn. That was all it took to fire Austria-Hungary and Germany into war after the assassination of their Archduke. Of course, this war grew as other countries joined their allegiances. The war was titled, “The War to End All Wars.” WWI. The story is told from five different points of view.
Felix Baum – a boy who fears he will never be as courageous as his father, Sergeant Baum. When the Russians come marching into Felix’s hometown in Austria-Hungary, all he can think of is how much he hates them and what they’re forcing him to do.
Elsa Dressler – a girl who is bubbly, and rather desires to be Felix’s friend. She owns a flock of homing pigeons trained to fly to the same home. Of course this enables her to write letters with Felix, so she is over-excited for that.
Kara Webb – a young British girl whose mother is part of the Red Cross. Kara decides to become a nurse, or even a doctor as she works on the ambulance trains. But she is also determined to make the right decision, no matter what her superiors decide.
Juliette – a French girl who has lost her family after desperately hiding from the Germans. Now she must travel around the French countryside searching for her family and avoiding capture.
Dimitri – a boy who was forced into the Russian army and then sent to fight on the front lines without any weapon. He wants nothing more than to travel back to his family and be at peace.
Through these five young people, an intriguing story of WWI as a teenager is woven. By the end, you will be cheering for these courageous characters.
Jennifer A. Nielsen’s books about WWI and WWII are amazing. Not only do they keep with historical detail, they vividly paint pictures of what it would be like to live in those time periods. People may recognize her name from the Ascendance trilogy (or series, since the trilogy has grown to five books), which are also amazing. One thing Jennifer A. Nielsen does in all her books is adding surprising plot twists and keeping her readers on the edges of their seats. Whether or not you’re a fan of historical fiction, this book will have you laughing and crying with all of the characters. For middle and high school teens + adults.