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Maggie Bright: A Novel of Dunkirk by Tracy…
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Maggie Bright: A Novel of Dunkirk

by Tracy Groot

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The entire history of the world is about to change as Hitler marches his troops across Europe. Can the actions of one person make a difference?

Clare Childs has mysteriously inherited the Maggie Bright. Her suspicions that Maggie holds a secret are proven when a thief comes aboard. Clare is suddenly thrown into the middle of a Scotland Yard investigation that could finally expose one of Hitler's darkest schemes. While on the other side of the channel, Private Jamie Elliot has been tasked with the mission of returning a wounded captain home. The captain has suffered a head injury and the only words he speaks are quotes from John Milton's Paradise Lost. When Churchill calls for civilians to help rescue the stranded British Army from Dunkirk, Clare knows that Maggie must go. Piloted by William Percy, a detective inspector and Murray Vance, a world renowned cartoonist, the Maggie Bright goes to war.

“You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.” - C.S. Lewis

Never have these words rung more true for me than when I finished reading Maggie Bright. I wish the story would go on and on. I absolutely love reading about World War II. There is so much evil during this period, but there is also hope and light. Nations coming together with a singular purpose. Fighting and dying side by side. I am ashamed to admit that most of my knowledge of WWII begins with D-Day and America's involvement. My eyes have been opened wide with England's trials at the beginning of the war. I cried four times while reading this book! The horror is real, the fight unbearable, yet the men and women who sacrificed everything did so for us today. So that we might have hope and know that no matter how dark things become, we shall press on to victory.

"God towards thee hath done his part, do thine" - John Milton, Paradise Lost

I received a free copy of Maggie Bright from Tyndale House Publishers in exchange for my honest review.
( )
  BookwormMama14 | Jun 15, 2015 |
With my two book clubs and reviewing schedule, I read a lot of books. A. LOT. And sometimes I get a bit weary of the same old same old — books that are good, just not great. A few weeks ago I was ready for great and I got it. Maggie Bright by Tracy Groot is not only great, it is excellent, exceptional. Set amidst the defeat of the British Expeditionary Force in Europe and its retreat to Dunkirk, the novel can certainly be labeled historical fiction. But with its imaginative plotting, inventive writing style and unforgettable characters, Maggie Bright is a literary gem that will appeal to all book lovers. This one is easily rated Very Highly Recommended!

There are two parallel, yet connected story lines in Maggie Bright. Private Jamie Elliott cannot believe the British Army is in retreat. Charged with safely delivering an injured Captain back to England, Jamie is faced with an army in full retreat, attacks by the Germans from the air and on land and a broken man who can only communicate in verse. He, along with a motley group of fellow soldiers, makes his way to the city of Dunkirk hoping against hope for rescue. On the home front, Clare Childs, American Murray Vance and Detective William Percy (as well as other minor characters) are swept up in intrigue and espionage as they face the chilling truth of Hitler’s ideals. Ordinary people are called to extraordinary efforts in a fight of good against evil.

Maggie Bright is a novel to be savored, not rushed through. Tracy takes her time developing the story and her characters. Her characters are the finest of men and the most courageous of women. Her research is impeccable and her writing finely crafted. Several things stand out in this novel. Most of the book is dialog — an interesting means of revealing emotions and motives. Tracy’s use of John Milton’s Paradise Lost quoted by Captain Milton as point and counterpoint to the action going on in Northern France is truly impressive. She is also able to convey the determination, courage, tenacity and grace of the English people as they are faced with holding the line against tyranny and injustice.

Prayer is an essential part of the story of Maggie Bright. Very few of the characters pray on a regular basis, and many are not even sure of who God is. The description of King George’s call to prayer and the British response is very moving. Sacrifice is also a major theme. I loved that the actions of the men of the Dunkirk rescue are described as love disguised as duty.

There is so much more I could say about Maggie Bright, but I will leave you with just one thought — read this book!!

Very Highly Recommended.

Audience: older teens to adults.

Great for book clubs.

(Thanks so much to Tyndale and Tracy Groot for review copies of this book. All opinions expressed are mine alone.) ( )
  vintagebeckie | May 18, 2015 |
Title: Maggie Bright (A Novel of Dunkirk)
Author: Tracy Groot
Website: http://www.tracygroot.com/
Pages: 368
Year: 2015
Publisher: Tyndale
My rating is 5 stars out of 5
Tracy Groot’s novel is a deeply compelling work of fiction based on the historical record of the approaching Nazi troops at Dunkirk. Yet, there is deeper story of the faith, humility and bravery shown by the civilians during a time when England faced her greatest challenges. When youngsters hear about events, there is a certain amount of innocence still left as children often look at brighter moments in their world. Now, as people age, those events take on a deeper meaning and spur us on to action doing whatever it takes to save our nation. In Maggie Bright we see what the citizens of Britain did when facing demise some at the highest cost of their lives. Yet, they continued on fighting to protect life, country and preserving it for those who are yet to be born.
Knowing Tracy’s penchant for detail and thorough research, I was drawn immediately to her novel based on events at Dunkirk. Each step of the way contains quotes from various sources left behind for the next generation. The tale told is a heart-gripping one where characters seem alive and my imagination allowed med to see the action through their eyes. After I read the Author’s Note, I was simply silenced to think of the cost paid when they were engaged in WWII.
Novels like this should stir our hearts and call us to action in defense of the nation we live in as that mantle was passed to us by our forefathers. Men went to war not because they enjoyed the job they did, but because their hope was that the next generation would have a better life and America would shine brightly!
So read this novel to understand what happened at a point in history that called for a nation to pray, and then to act as He would lead. Above all, at the end of the novel, one spritely lady reminds us over and over again that our enemy is not flesh and blood but spiritual. We must fight on both fronts spiritually and physically with faith as well as courage. Why? So we can leave behind a legacy that says we fought the good fight of faith and by His strength we too can defeat any foe who seeks to destroy America.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255. “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
Other reviews can be read at http://seekingwithallyurheart.blogspot.com/. Also follow me on Twitter @lcjohnson1988, FaceBook at https://www.facebook.com/lisa.johnson.75457 ( )
  lcjohnson1988 | May 10, 2015 |
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