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The Last Green Valley

4.50  ·  Rating details ·  4,039 ratings  ·  482 reviews
From the author of the #1 bestseller Beneath a Scarlet Sky comes a new historical novel inspired by one family’s incredible story of daring, survival, and triumph.

In late March 1944, as Stalin’s forces push into Ukraine, young Emil and Adeline Martel must make a terrible decision: Do they wait for the Soviet bear’s intrusion and risk being sent to Siberia? Or do they reluc
Hardcover, 458 pages
Published May 4th 2021 by Lake Union Publishing
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 ·  4,039 ratings  ·  482 reviews

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Mar 25, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
Beneath a Scarlet Sky is one of the best historical fictions I’ve ever read, so I couldn’t wait to see what Mark Sullivan would produce next. The Last Green Valley is also based on real people, again the history of a family now living in Montana.
This time, the story starts in Ukraine. The Martels are Volksdeutsche, sixth generation Germans brought to the Ukraine by Catherine the Great to share their agricultural skills. Of course, under Stalin, they became personae non gratae and Adeline’s fath
This is a WWII historical fiction that is very hard hitting. This WWII historical fiction follows a family of German heritage whose ancestors have farmed in Ukraine for a long time before the war started. I think all the other WWII historical fiction books I have read in the past follows a Jewish family, so I feel this book is like no other WWII historical fiction book I have read in the past. I have to say this book is incredibly hard to read at times because the author goes into details about ...more
Karren  Sandercock
Emil and Adeline Martel are of German heritage, forced to make the difficult decision to either stay in the Ukraine and it’s about to be invaded by the Russian army or leave and flee West with the Germany army? The Martel’s have lived under Russian rule before, they decide to leave, they have two young sons Walt and Will, and they pack their wagon with, food, water, clothing, bedding and tools. They begin the journey into the unknown, with horses Thor & Oden pulling the wagon, the roads are busy ...more
As Adeline and Emil Martel and their two young sons joined the caravan of refugees, along with both Emil and Adeline’s families, they were under no illusions of what could and probably would lie ahead. Their wagon with their two faithful horses leading the way, followed the directions of the Germans who were ‘protecting’ them, taking them away from the danger of Stalin’s rule. Ukraine in 1944 was a dreadful place to call home, with hunger and starvation high on their list of grievances. Their dr ...more
May 18, 2021 rated it really liked it
I have just finished reading The Last Green Valley by Author Mark T. Sullivan.

This story follows the Martel Family, and begins in late March 1944 as Stalin moves into the Ukraine.

The voices of the book are German born Emil and Adeline Martel.

I have read many books about war, and this horrific time in history, and still find it eye opening and alarming.

This is a very good historical fiction, and the second book I have read by the author. I did find “Under a Scarlet Sky”, a bit more engaging to m
May 13, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: may-21, 5000-2021
From the author of #1 bestseller "Beneath A Scarlet Sky" comes a new captivating historical novel.
"The Last Green Valley" by Mark T. Sullivan is a WWII story of a dream that leads one family to freedom. This novel is inspired by one family's unimaginable story of courage, survival and triumph. Raw and heartbreaking the Martel family flees Stalin's Russia and Hiltler's Nazi Germany, despite extreme physical and psychological challenges, to ultimately find freedom in the USA.
An inspirational and
Pam Jenoff
Apr 06, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Inspired by actual events during the Second World War, this book is about the Martel family who must make the impossible decision to leave their homier Ukraine as the Soviet army advances and follow the Germans. They find themselves caught on the frontline between two warring nations in a harrowing journey of survival. This book will be out May 4th so add it to your TBR pile now!
Jan 31, 2021 rated it really liked it
I have heard great things about Mark Sullivan’s previous novel Beneath a scarlet sky so, I couldn’t wait to delve into his latest offering The Last Green Valley.
The last green Valley is based on the actual story of the Martel family, Emil, and Adeline and their two sons Will and Walter. Who are Ukrainian but have some German heritage. They are stuck the regimes of the Soviets and Stalin. So, they will not be put into camps like others where they live. they do not want to be deported to Siberia t
Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
May 07, 2021 rated it really liked it
I’ve been wanting to read a book by Mark Sullivan since his Beneath a Scarlet Sky was such a smashing success. I still haven’t read that one, but I’m grateful to say I’ve read and loved The Last Green Valley.

In the 1940s, just as Stalin pushes into Ukraine, Emil and Adeline have a choice to make. Do they stay in their home and possibly get sent to Siberia, or do they follow the Nazis who have promised to protect Germans abroad in Ukraine. They decide to leave their beloved home and go with the N
Dec 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Mark Sullivan does it again! I couldn't stop reading this incredible story about the Martel family and their long trek fleeing the Soviet regime during the aftermath of WWII.

There were moments I found myself on the edge of my seat gripping my Kindle to see what the next pages would bring! The Last Green Valley is full of action, well-developed characters, and history. As always, Sullivan does immaculate research when compiling an unforgettable story. I felt so connected to each member of this f
My husband and I have great-grandparents who were Germans living in Russia, so I was interested in the subject matter of this novel.
Sadly, I did not find the writing appealing. Info dumps, jumping between timelines, etc etc, so have walked away.
Susan Peterson
Apr 26, 2021 rated it it was amazing
The most extraordinary thing about this book is that it is based on a true story. The Last Green Valley is a harrowing account of the Martel family, whose attempt to escape to the West near the end of World War II is an amazing tale of courage and faith. The danger, the starvation, the fear, and the desperation that this family lives through is heart-wrenching and awe-inspiring. The author describes their journey with stark detail, but always with just the slightest glimmer of hope.
Krisette Spangler
Jun 05, 2021 rated it it was amazing
The Martels are Germans who have lived in Ukraine for decades. When the German army begins its retreat in 1943, they encourage all Germans to come back with them to Germany before Stalin's forces arrive. The Martel family begins a journey that takes them through Romania and into Poland. As the German army retreats and leaves them to face Stalin's wrath alone, the Martels must face horrible choices that might keep them apart forever.

I loved this novel, and I learned so much about another front of
Christine Sokomba
May 28, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Based on a true story, this is an incredible and unique WWII novel. I learned so much that I had no idea about regarding Stalin and Soviet control during and after the war. The Martel family's story of love and persistence and determination was one I won't soon forget. This was another great book by Mark Sullivan! ...more
May 03, 2021 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2021
This is a dual timeline historical fiction set in 1944, with flashbacks starting in 1922.

The Martel family is of German heritage and was brought to Ukraine by Catherine the Great for their agricultural skills. We follow their lives and experiences as they traverse the war-torn world.

I requested this one from netgalley because I’d heard that Beneath A Scarlet Sky (by the same author) was very well written. Unfortunately, this book didn’t grab my attention like I’d hoped. I found my mind wanderi
Dec 12, 2020 rated it really liked it
The Last Green Valley lived up to my hopes which were built from Beneath A Scarlett Sky; a book I read several years ago and still heartily recommend.

Focusing on the life arc of Adeline and Emil, along with their sons Walt and Will, we join them on the treacherous and harrowing long journey from Ukraine to Germany in the closing stages of WWII. Flanked by their Nazi ‘companions’ and avoiding Stalin’s troops, they make their way slowly west with their extended family. Over the following years th
May 27, 2021 rated it really liked it
"We can stay and wait for the bear that we know will kill us, or rape you and kill me and the boys, or imprison us all in Siberia. Or we can run with the wolves that will protect us until we can make our escape west. Escape the war. Escape everything."

Emil and Adeline have to make a difficult decision in March of 1944 as the Soviets move west through their land in Ukraine: do they wait to be overrun by the Communist regime that they've suffered under for years and know their fate or risk retreat
May 25, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ww-ii-europe
Well for someone who didn't think she was going to read very many more WWII novels, I have just finished two very ones! Both novels deal with ethnic German farmers living in Ukraine (or technically Prussia in the case of Tears of Amber) and their stories as the Red Army approached from the east (and the German army retreated to the west) and they were forced to flee their homes and become refugees on a long journey west. The characters in The Last Green Valley were extremely well portrayed. The ...more
Barbi ♉️
Jun 05, 2021 rated it it was amazing
So much to say. Once again a well researched, well written book. The details are astonishing. Sorry to see this end but look forward to many more releases in the future. I just love Mark Sullivan. He is an amazing story teller. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Jan 12, 2021 rated it really liked it
Although this book is based during WWII, most of the events take place at the end of the war and the immediate years following. This definitely sets this book apart from the many WWII historical fictions that are out there (and there are a lot!). Adeline and Emil's families are fleeing the the oppressive hand of Stalin, only to be hit with hardship after hardship. Even at the war's end, their lives continue to be controlled by others. Through all of their heartbreak, Adeline and Emil continue to ...more
Feb 28, 2021 rated it liked it
Maybe my expectations were too high. Or maybe I'm tired of reading the overabundance of World War II novels. But THE LAST GREEN VALLEY bored me for the most part.

This is historical fiction about the experiences of an ethnic German family in 1944 as German soldiers led them, along with many other ethnic Germans, westward from their homes in Ukraine. What a predicament they faced: were they running from Stalin just to be "protected" by Nazi wolves?

I'll say this for the book: it is interesting. And
May 25, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley
The Martels are a family of German origin living in the Ukraine. During the war the Germans are running from the Russians and the Martels become part of the Long Trek going west into Germany because they are true Aryans. Emil's dream is always to go west as far as he can go and Adeline is looking for a green valley. Along the way Emil's sister has an accident and her and his parents decide to go back home saying it is better to live under the Russians. Later Adeline's mother and sister decide to ...more
May 20, 2021 rated it it was amazing

What. A. Story.

Mark Sullivan has produced another jaw-dropping historical fiction, this time based on the incredible journey of the Martel family who were pushed to the limits of human endurance during WWII.

I’ve read quite a lot of historical fiction stories set during WWII, but never one from the point of view of a German family, so this felt extra special.

This book is written from the alternating points of view of Adeline and Emil Martel as they navigate their family through horror after
Valeria Spencer
May 27, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I loved Beneath the Scarlet Sky, and Sullivan delivers again in Valley. I had to keep reminding myself this was based on a real family, the Martels, and their incredible journey in 1944 from
Ukrainian to Poland, to Soviet occupied East Germany, and Soviet labor camps, and more. What an incredible story that had me on the edge of my seat. I have read many, many WWII books, and Sullivan has been able to add richly to my knowledge of the war.
Adeline and Emil Martel lived in Ukraine and suffered mi
May 11, 2021 rated it liked it
This historical novel, one based on real-life, is the story of Emil and Adeline Martel who are caught between the Russian and the Germans in their native Ukraine during WWII. They have to flee – but both east and west pose great danger and the following years are difficult indeed. It’s a powerful and compelling story, but if I hadn't known how firmly based it was on fact I would have been impatient with it. There are just so many coincidences that credibility is pushed to the limit, even if we a ...more
Becky McGregor
Jun 09, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Let me start out by I loved Beneath a Scarlet Sky so I was excited to read this one. Now this book was easy for me to pick up and I seemed drawn to it. I didn’t know much about the Russian part of the war. 3/4 of the way done I thought we’ll this book wasn’t as good and then I finished it. That thought left my mind. I loved it so very much. I love how Mark writes and I just LOVED the story. I made me reflect on my own life. A beautiful book if you like historical fiction you will enjoy this book ...more
Jayne Scott
May 14, 2021 rated it really liked it
Mark Sullivan has adroitly infused the Martel’s courageous account with this traumatic period in history. A truly moving and immersive story which transported me on this harrowing journey. Distressing, insightful, compelling all at once.
Jun 02, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I’m always amazed by human resilience. The stories that come out of World War II are shocking and stunning and powerful. We need these stories to infiltrate the masses so they see the evils of what a totalitarian government does to the human spirit. May we never forget the blessing of freedom, and always continue to fight for it.
Anna Cass
May 13, 2021 rated it it was amazing
A few weeks ago I was having a conversation with my mom about definitely not putting any more books on hold until I've made some headway through my current backlog. Definitely. I really mean it this time. Then I walked upstairs and read an email from Goodreads about all the books coming out this month that they think I'll like, so I placed 5 more holds. Some resolutions are really just meant to be broken.
This was one of the holds I placed that day, and I'm so glad I did. I didn't even check what
May 21, 2021 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars. A little bit of a slow start, but an amazing story and unlike anything I’ve read in the historical fiction WWII category. The fact that this book is based on a true story is even better.
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Mark T. Sullivan (b. 1958) is an author of thrillers. Born in a Boston suburb, he joined the Peace Corp after college, traveling to West Africa to live with a tribe of Saharan nomads. Upon returning to the United States, he took a job at Reuters, beginning a decade-long career in journalism that would eventually lead to a job as an investigative reporter for the San Diego Tribune.

Sullivan spent th

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