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Hearts of Stone by Simon Scarrow
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Hearts of Stone

by Simon Scarrow

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A superior second world war book based around the Greek resistance on the idyllic Ionian island of Lefkas. It is a story about love, friendship, war, and treachery and brilliantly portrays how the Nazi regime attempted to subjugate all those who opposed it's so called Reich doctrine. I enjoyed the authors style of storytelling by introducing us to an aged Eleni Thesskoudis and through her eyes revealing the courage and sacrifice of the Greek resistance as first the Italians and then the Germans attempted to crush all opposition to its vision of a new world order..."Perhaps war was the real face of humanity, and peace was little more than a pretence of what human nature could be."...."They were lying in wait to slaughter their enemy, or be killed in turn. Against that reality what did their feelings matter? Feelings had no place in this setting, this moment." This is the second Simon Scarrow book I have recently read and it certainly does not disappoint. ( )
  runner56 | Jun 12, 2017 |
The story is told in the present and in the past.

In 1938 three teens meet and enjoy life. Eleni, Andreas and Peter.

In the present Anna meets an descendant of Peter who wants to meet her grandmother Eleni. Not something Eleni wants, but instead she tells her story to Anna. Though I must say, it was not really Eleni's story we get, it is Andreas' story. Quite the shame, cos yes his story is good, but Eleni's would have been so different.

Ok, back to the past. The war starts. Italians and later Germans invade Greece. Andreas goes off to fight. Eleni stays at home, and Peter who knows Greek and the island will later be sent there. They will all meet again. And we all know that wont be pretty.

It's war. There is hate. There is struggle. They all want to fight for their country, even if their country is not always making the right choices.

But there is more. Peter was on the island with his father who was an archaeologist. And later Germans come back to find that which was not found, or was it? And to take it.

I do not think I have read a book set in Greece during WWII before. I liked the mix of war and the hunt for that which was hidden. It was also sad to see how the anger still lingered on. Still, more of Elenis' story would have been nice, but that would have made the book too big. Not to mention to see how Peter fared before he came there. ( )
  blodeuedd | Mar 2, 2016 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0755380223, Hardcover)

The fierce courage of the men and women of the Greek Resistance is brought to vivid life in Sunday Times bestseller Simon Scarrow's powerful new novel of World War II. 1938. A perfect summer on the Greek island of Lefkas for three young people untroubled by the simmering politics of Europe. Peter, visiting from Germany while his father leads an archaeological dig, has become close friends with locals Andreas and Eleni. As the world slides towards conflict and Peter is forced to leave, they swear to meet again. 1943: Andreas and Eleni have joined the partisan forces resisting the German invasion. Peter has returned - now a dangerously well-informed enemy intelligence officer. A friendship formed in peace will turn into a desperate battle between enemies sworn to sacrifice everything for the countries that they love...'Simon Scarrow has done it again: another barnstorming book that speaks not only of the horror of war, but the ultimate heroism and self-sacrifice of those caught up in it. The glory of Simon's books is that they can be read on so many levels: yes, they are thrilling in its truest sense, there are characters we care about deeply and they are under constant threat. But alongside this are the vignettes of a life clearly viewed, the threads of sharp social observation that set his historical thrillers apart from the greater mass.' Manda Scott

(retrieved from Amazon Fri, 03 Jul 2015 13:29:14 -0400)

1938. A perfect summer on the Greek island of Lefkas for three young people untroubled by the simmering politics of Europe. Peter, visiting from Germany while his father leads an archaeological dig, has become close friends with locals Andreas and Eleni. As the world slides towards conflict and Peter is forced to leave, they swear to meet again. 1942: Andreas and Eleni have joined the partisan forces resisting the German invasion. Peter has returned - now a dangerously well-informed enemy intelligence officer. A friendship formed in peace will turn into a desperate battle between enemies sworn to sacrifice everything for the countries that they love.… (more)

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