The Race for Paris Review

The Race for Paris - Meg Waite Clayton

4/5 stars
*Disclaimer: I won this book from Goodreads First Reads, all my opinions are my own.*

J'ai plus de souvenirs que si j'avais mille ans.

This book is one of the hardest I've ever tried to place a rating on. The book was based around a time of war and while historical fiction, the history was definitely there. Books filled with history I generally have a harder time reading. I was never good at history, in fact, it was one of my worst subjects in high school and college. So I guess all the dates present and names that I feel like I should recognize but don't in history-related books make me feel dumb. I started off with that kind of mentality and it stuck for quite awhile. I would read for a bit and put it down because I felt overwhelmed by the dates and places (The only thing I'm worse in than history is geography. I don't know where anything is) and names. But as the story went on I began to emotionally connect with Jane. And through my emotional connection to her I could finally experience the story rather than feel bogged down in details. I could feel her desire to be wanted, her bitterness towards a friend. I understood Jane and that's what made this story special to me. It was a drastic change. I went from reading a chapter or two when i found a chance to making time to read 40 or more pages. I felt so connected to the book that I would just burst into tears. Not at anything overtly sad, but more at the whole concept, how bad the war must of been, how many people died, children left without parents, mothers without sons, fathers and brothers in trenches praying they make it home to see their loved ones smile one last time. I guess until I read this war was just something that happened. I had never really been affected much by war, but something in the writing and in that bond I formed with the main character made me realize how terrible war can be for once, made me realize this is something that actually happens, actually ruins lives.

So in the end, no I didn't give it a 5 star review. But that doesn't mean you wouldn't. If you are someone who loves history, someone who enjoys historical fiction it would suit you better than me. It was wonderfully written but I rate books on an personal enjoyment basis, and there were times where me and the book didn't click at all. If you have the money, you enjoy WWII literature, and you don't mind getting teary-eyed pick up this book because Megan Waite Clayton spend years making this book as close to perfect as she could get it.