Author – Anna Mackenzie
Age – 13+
‘They say women should ‘stay home and sit still’ – but how can I?
This is a story about war – wondering whether it will come to them, trying to live with it when it does, and wishing it would finally end. It is a story of loss, of love, of sacrificing your own comfort, way of life and almost every shred of energy you have – to help the wounded, dying and broken.
Told in a diary format, Evie’s voice is real, true to the time (between 1914 – 1918), taking the reader on Evie’s journey through four years that will take thousands of lives and leave thousands of others, including Evie’s -changed forever.
Evie and her family travel to England, making new friends on the long ship voyage. When in the UK, they stay with Evie’s aunt and uncle. Evie is looking forward to travelling to Europe on a family trip, but talk of war and then its arrival changes all that. With her brother Edmund keen to join up, Evie is keen to help, first with women’s groups to raise funds, knit socks etc, and then volunteering at a hospital against her parent’s wishes.
Evie sees the war how it really is, through the filthy, infected, near dead soldiers who are brought in, day after day, sometimes hour after hour. They are in contrast to the newspaper reports hailing victories however small, to the public.
Evie finds love and friendship along the way, drawing the reader into her life and her growing up in England surrounded by the effects of war.
Meticulously researched, not only giving any keen student of WW1 the events of the war, but a feel for the time it spanned.
Not only Excellent Kiwi Fiction, but Excellent Local (HB) Fiction from an Award winning author.
(War, Love, family, Friendships, Grief, Diary, NZ Author, Award, WWI)