A Fire Sparkling
author: Julianne MacLean
genre: Historical Fiction
release date: August 1, 2019
format: Audiobook – 13 hours and 12 minutes

from Goodreads –

From the USA Today bestselling author of A Curve in the Road comes a spellbinding novel about one woman’s love, loss, and courage during wartime.

With so many choices in the WWII Historical Fiction genre, it’s sometimes hard to choose your next read. If you are a fan of dual timelines, fast-moving scenes, and mystery and intrigue with a bit of romance, A Fire Sparkling by Julianne MacLean is a book to move to the top of your TBR list. As mentioned in my previous reviews, one of my favorite things in a current read is twists. This story has so many unexpected surprises and moves in such varied directions, you’ll wish you had more hours in the day to keep reading just to find out what happens next.

It’s hard to imagine your grandmother as a young woman with hopes and dreams. Gillian Gibbons has the unique opportunity to do that when she discovers an old photograph of her grandmother, Vivian Hughes, in the arms of a Nazi officer. Gillian had returned home to heal her wounded heart after finding out her boyfriend cheated and found the picture shortly after arriving. This sends her on a quest to learn more about the matriarch of her family.

This book moves seamlessly through dual timelines.  We get to become a part of both Vivian and Gillian’s worlds. Vivian’s story begins in London in 1939. We are there through the bombings and heartache and follow her journey through war-torn Europe. We are trusted with secrets that unfold slowly and bring us to new realities with each turn. Gillian’s story is set in the present day and we feel her confusion and frustration as she tries to make sense of circumstances that become more and more convoluted. One of the best parts of A Fire Sparkling is the way Julianne MacLean pushes us over the edge and then helps us back up again. This story brings us on a wild ride with each plot twist and satisfying resolution. A Fire Sparkling is one of those books that lingers on your mind even days after finishing it.

I listened to this book on Audible and found the narration only added to the experience of this book. Rosalyn Landor and Sarah Zimmerman paint pictures with their voices that further allow us to become completely immersed in this world. Sometimes audiobooks push you out of the narrative with odd accents or distracting noises, but that is not the case here. It’s one of my favorite Audible books so far.

If you are a fan of World War II Historical Fiction written in a style that makes you feel like you are experiencing things first hand, A Fire Sparkling is for you.

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