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From Dust and Ashes: A Story of Liberation (World War II Liberator #1)

4.07  ·  Rating Details  ·  582 Ratings  ·  77 Reviews
It is 1945 and a group of American soliers liberate a Nazi concentration camp. Helene is the abandoned wife of an SS guard who has fled to avoid arrest. Overcome by guilt, she begins to help meet the needs of survivors. Throughout the process, she finds her own liberation - from spiritual bondage, sin, and guilt. Readers will be intrigued and touched by this fascinating st ...more
Kindle Edition, 484 pages
Published January 1st 2003 by Moody Publishers
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Jan 29, 2009 Lori rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've been looking around for a Christian author I could recommend to others, and finally can say I've found one. I picked up this book from my local library's "Inspirational Reading" shelf and decided to give it a try. This is the only book I've read by Tricia Goyer, but I would recommend it. It's a story of the liberating of a concentration camp in the weeks/months leading up to the end of WWII. The author did a good job of allowing you to feel the horrors of the camps without getting too graph ...more
Aug 13, 2012 Roger rated it did not like it
Shelves: finished
I can't recommend this book. It was offered "free" by Amazon; and I got what I paid for. I picked this book no only because it was free, but because it dealt with WWII and Germany. I have always been fascinated by the time period, what led up to the war, the war itself, and immediately after the war. The back cover of the book and the recommendations given lead one to believe that this story was based upon true events, and was accurate in its historical detail. Well, that might be a little stret ...more
Once more, I started this book hesitantly and ended up loving it! This is a great story, perfectly written. In this heart-wrenching story, we meet 3 special people. Helene, the wife of a Nazi SS guard; Peter, an American G.I.; and Micheala, a Polish girl who has survived the Mauthausen concentration camp. After Peter and the other G.I.s have liberated the concentration camps, he is doing all he can to help the survivors. Helene is shackled by guilt because of the cruelties that her drunken husba ...more
This is one of the best books on WWII fiction that I've read. I especially like the emphasis on the liberation of people from the concentration camps. There are not very many stories out there like this one. I couldn't put the book down. Great love story, great intrigue/action, and accurate. I went to the Holocaust Museum in DC and this story takes you right into that era. Also, I like the Nazi piece to the story. War is a terrible thing and many people are stuck on a side they don't necessarily ...more
Jesseca Wheaton
Feb 02, 2016 Jesseca Wheaton rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow. This. Book. Was. Amazing. I got it for Christmas but I didn't get a chance to read it until recently. Now I need to collect the whole series!!!! :)
Tricia Goyer does an excellent job intertwining the lives of the three main characters. There were many times I thought I had figured out how it all would end, only to be thrown a whole new twist in the next chapter. and of course it's set in WWII, which is my favorite time period ever!!! I can't wait to read the rest of the books in the series!
Nov 30, 2010 Terri rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book . Tricia did wonderful job writing this book and fill in history of Germany .
Maggie Boyd
This was a complete nightmare of a book.

In 1945 Peter, Michaela, and Helene all meet.

Helen is the wife of a concentration camp soldier and for years has heard the cries for help from the camp. She hates it there but was afraid to leave her husband. When he finally runs as the Americans close in she goes to the camp with food to help whoever she can.

Michaela is one of those people. When they are released from the camp by the Americans Helene takes in Michaela and Leila into her father's house,
May 15, 2012 Anna rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Christians and WWII book fans
Recommended to Anna by: Lesa my GR friend & Google
Wow; this book was absolutely amazing!! It was divided into three parts. The first was about the liberation, the second was my least favorite part (not a romance fan) and was about their romantic lives.
The third was absolutely the best part, and the reason I give it five stars. It was full of plot twists and had the perfect ending, not too sad, not too happy. I could NOT put it down, and had it (the third part) read within less than two hours. (that's pretty good for me)
This book obviously had t
“A story of liberation” is the subtitle of this novel of the aftermath of World War II. In the opening chapters American GIs liberate the Gusen concentration camp outside St. Georgen, Austria, but the story is really about the spiritual liberation of Helene, wife of a missing SS officer. Wracked by guilt for her own complicity and her husband’s horrific actions, she is one of the first to enter the camp to bring aid. There she meets Michaela, a Polish inmate near death, whose faith brings new li ...more
So gripping that I had to tear myself away to get to bed!

From Dust and Ashes: A Story of Liberation(The Liberator Series,Book 4) was so hard for me to put down. I love it when a book is THAT good! I also love when an historical teaches me history,as this novel did. It was fascinating to read that General Patton ordered the liberating American soldiers to make the civilians around the concentration camps to help bury the dead and attend funerals for them,so they would be forced to see and acknow
Bruce Judisch
Nov 02, 2010 Bruce Judisch rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In May, 1945, advance elements of the 11th Armored Divsion rolled into St. Georgen, Austria. What awaited them there would be gouged into the soldiers' memories for the rest of their lives: the Gusen concentration camp.

Sergeant Peter Scott is among the first to arrive at the front gates. The skeletal remnants of men and women cling to the fence and clutter the main entrance to glimpse their liberators and beg for even a morsel to eat. He encounters the gaunt figure of Michaela, a Polish Christia
Mar 15, 2015 Debbi rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Helene is a SS Nazi wife whose husband was a concentration camp guard. He runs off when the Americans come. On the day the camp was liberated Helene is there with food and love for the prisoners; finally doing what she'd wanted to do for five long years. She takes two of the sickest home to nurse them and both end up falling for American G.I.s. The drama increases when Allied boundaries are revised and the village is now under the jurisdiction of the Russians. Bad news for Helene and her childre ...more
This book is really cool, as far as the themes it deals with. The whole story line is just awesome: that of the wife of an SS agent who loved her husband, but he and their marriage went to pieces because of all of the awful things he had done. The depth and sorrow and shattered dreams in that one issue are so amazing. And the whole aftermath of World War II, combined with the lives of released prisoners and wives of SS agents, was incredibly fascinating! It was crazy to think of Friederick and t ...more
Amy M
4 1/2 stars We have a Christian bookstore in my town that features not only new books, but an alcove filled with used books. If you’re willing to sort, there is great treasure to be had. This past weekend, I unearthed a set of Tricia Goyer’s World War II series. From Dust and Ashes, the first of them, is written so vividly that I would never have guessed that it’s Goyer’s debut novel.

Set in the immediate aftermath of WWII, the author takes us to an Austrian town that housed a terrible secret. Ho
This book will have you crying, introspecting, and thinking "how could anyone be so strong".
Tricia Goyer is a master at bringing the emotions and the action of WWII alive.
While this is a Christian Historical Fiction MASTERPIECE, anyone who enjoys WWII history or WWII fiction is sure to be enchanted with this book "From Dust and Ashes"!!
Aug 01, 2008 Jeni rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Better-than-average inspirational fiction. This historical novel doesn't just set modern-day people in an old setting; the characters and situations feel authentic. Not overly optimistic or smarmy. I really enjoyed this story set at the end of World War II and would like to read more about these characters.
Jan 25, 2014 Martha rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is just as good the third time I read it as the first time! We discussed this in book club and what a story! Great read!
Brooke Chasen
Nov 03, 2008 Brooke Chasen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: holocaust
A story about faith, love, and forgiveness. I liked it because it was not the typical story about the holocaust. They had different people's perspectives in it such as a wife of a Nazi, an American soldier, and a concentration camp survivor.
Helene is married to an SS officer during WWII. She comes to abhor what he stands for. She helps Jewish prisoners while her husband is away. Twists and turns abound. Riveting read.
I’ve always enjoyed history, and therefore historical fiction is my favorite genre (after suspense, that is! ;-). Recently I’ve become really interested in books set around either of the World Wars, and From Dust and Ashes, set in 1945, really intrigued me. Presenting many somber facts about the cruelty of war and a prisoners life after being set free, Tricia Goyer holds you captive with her amazing story plot that will leave you amazed.

From Dust and Ashes is not your typical historical. There’s
Jan 15, 2011 Joy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good story and well researched. I grew up in a time when WWII, the holocaust and liberation were still current in everyone's discussions--the older ones talked about it for a long time. While her description of the conditions at the prison camp may be shocking to some now, I felt the author underplayed the gut-wrenching horror the Americans found and especially their reactions.

Goyer states at the end that she traveled Europe as a part of her research but I don't think enough detail is reflected
For Europe, the war is over. Prison camps are being liberated, and SS guards are rounded up for punishment as their families are forced to leave their homes - a much lesser fate than was received by the people imprisoned. One such wife is Helene, heavily pregnant with her second child and coping with her husband Friedrich's abandonment, who faces her eviction alone.

An emotional reunion with her estranged father presents Helene with a new home, yet it is not enough to ease the guilt brought on fr
Jan 31, 2011 Kathy rated it really liked it
Many books have been written about the Holocaust and the horrors of life in concentration camps. This one was so unique because it dealt with the lives of the prisoners from the day of liberation on. Where would they go? How could they find other family members who may or may not have survived? What about food, clothing, money? In history books, it seems like everything was great once the Allied soldiers arrived, but in reality the survivors had to totally rebuild their lives.

I thought the auth
May 21, 2012 Cat rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: holocaust-drama
I am unsure as to how to rate this book. I really enjoyed the subject matter but I was unaware that it was also a Christian book. I enjoyed the historical perspective in that so many books that deal with the Holocaust only deal with what happens in the time period of 1939 to 1945. This one dealt with the time of the liberation and what happened afterwards. I thought that the characters were well thought out and I really cared about what happened to them. I was very glad when things worked out wi ...more
This is a historical fictional book taking the perspective of three main characters: Helene who is the pregnant mother (one born, one in the womb) and the wife of an SS officer in the German Nazi army, Michaela who is a survivor from a concentration camp, and Peter who is a US soldier. All three of these people come in contact with one another when the US finds the concentration camps and is liberating the people in Austria (1945).

This is a nearly 500 paged book that I read within a few days. I
Rebecca Young
Nov 18, 2015 Rebecca Young rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Rebecca by: Heather Rodriguez
This is a great book! It's the inspiring story of the 11th Armored Division during the liberation of Mauthausen and Gusen concentration camps, and although it is a work of fiction, it is steeply based in historical facts of that awful period of world history. The author does a fabulous job of weaving the history into a readable account of the atrocities of war, while giving us a fictional narrative that fits.
Mar 02, 2015 Sally rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015-books-read
The in-depth research revealed in this book gave an insightful look at the end of World War II. I felt like I was there with all the main characters and saw the pain, grief and fear they experienced. This is a well-written book and after you read it, you'll feel more knowledgeable about went on the the prison camps in Austria and Germany. You'll experience the hope that is always present as well as why they have hope. I recommend it.
Jennifer Nelson
I was pleasantly surprised by this Christian author's skill in storytelling and character development. Having encountered a lot of trash in the Christian fiction offerings, I am always impressed by books like this that have a solid story, have a message of truth and hope weaved in, and that feature believable and likable characters.

The beginning of this book was great. It drew you into the story and characters quickly and I started to get that I-don't-want-to-put-it-down feel after the first fe
Apr 18, 2014 Morgan rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book had an amateurish feel about it as well as being a little sappy. I feel like it didn't delve deep enough. Like the characters weren't sufficiently developed...
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Tricia Goyer is a busy mom of six, grandmother of two, and wife to John. Somewhere around the hustle and bustle of family life, she manages to find the time to write fictional tales delighting and entertaining readers and non-fiction titles offering encouragement and hope. A bestselling author, Tricia has published thirty-three books to date and has written more than 500 articles. She is a two tim ...more
More about Tricia Goyer...

Other Books in the Series

World War II Liberator (4 books)
  • Night Song: A Story of Sacrifice (World War II Liberator #2)
  • Dawn of a Thousand Nights: A Story of Honor (World War II Liberator #3)
  • Arms of Deliverance: A Story of Promise (World War II Liberator #4)

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