As the veterans of World War II begin to pass on, it is comforting to know that writers like Sarah Sundin will immortalize tales of the time period with works like her latest book, A Memory Between Us. The second book in her Wings of Glory series, A Memory Between Us is about a romance between a fighter pilot and an army nurse. The story, though slow-moving, is riveting, especially with all the intricate details Sundin incorporated into the story.
It feels like the reader is in the cockpit with Major Jack Novak as he fights with the Allies against Hitler. But when it gets wounded on his posterior end, he winds up in the hospital where he meets the gorgeous, but guarded Lieutenant Ruth Doherty. Jack falls head over heels for Ruth, who refuses to date or kiss because of her sordid past, which she keeps carefully hidden from everyone. Pride seeps through Jack’s veins and he flirts his way into Ruth’s life, which causes detrimental consequences for both parties. Just when it seems that Ruth or Jack cannot possibly cause more damage to their friendship, disaster strikes again.
This story is action-packed, full of twists-and-turns, and a few great surprises. Not shying away from heady topics like rape and sexual harassment, Sundin presents an accurate depiction in how women, particularly female nurses, were treated by the service men. Fighting off advances from the wounded proves just as difficult as caring for their actual injuries. Also, Sundin has an amazing knowledge of the inner workings of a plane, combat, and terminology. While some of the flight dialogue passed right over my head, I could not help but marvel at Sundin’s mastery of the somewhat coded army talk. Sundin certainly did her homework in writing this book.
At times, I felt that Ruth overreacted about her past, but then again, Ruth’s moral violation (selling kisses for cash) may have seemed more serious to upstanding citizens in the past. I also feel that Jack, who was just gushing with prideful behavior, really mistreated Ruth. In fact, I found it difficult to “forgive” Jack’s actions. Maybe God is using this book to iron out areas of unforgiveness in my own faith. It takes a good work of fiction to get a reader to examine her own heart, and that’s what A Memory Between Us provides—a good hard look at the human heart, its intentions, and what it does when surrendered to God.
Amy’s Grade: B
Available September 2010 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.
*Thanks to Revell for a review copy of this book!*