Gavin Stephenson-Jackman's Reviews > Coventry

Coventry by Helen Humphreys
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's review
Mar 16, 2012

it was amazing
Recommended to Gavin by: Mature Men's Book Club

This story follows the lives of two women from WWI and WWII in Coventry England. Harriet meets Maeve as she leaves the train station after seeing her new husband off on his way to Ypres early in WWI. They make their way across the city returning to Harriet's flat never really exchanging enough information to find each other again. Fast forward to 1940 and WWII where Harriet is on fire watch duty on the roof of Coventry Cathedral when the Germans attack. She and another young fire watcher are forced to flee when the Cathedral is hit. The young fire watcher is new to Coventry and Harriet leads him across the city to find his mother (Maeve) during the height of the attack. In the process of finding Maeve, Harriet also finds peace within herself and dealing with the effects to two wars.

This is a great read which once I started I had great difficulty putting down. The German attack on Coventry in 1940 was meant to cripple its industrial potential in the war effort but the resulting fire storm destroyed much of the city. It has been said that the British government had forewarning of the attack but did not mount a defence of the city to keep the Germans from discovering that they had broken their cipher code.

I would strongly recommend this book to anyone with an interest in history and particularly the history of WWII as it brings the reality, horror, and courage of war home.
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Reading Progress

March 16, 2012 – Shelved
April 29, 2012 –
2.0%
April 30, 2012 – Started Reading
April 30, 2012 –
4.0%
May 1, 2012 –
11.0%
May 2, 2012 –
18.0%
May 2, 2012 –
33.0%
May 3, 2012 –
37.0% "Well into a very long section of the book."
May 3, 2012 –
81.0%
May 3, 2012 – Finished Reading

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