Book Review: When We Were Warriors

By Emily Price

This trio of immersive short stories by Emma Carroll plunges the reader into the Summer of 1942 when World War II is well underway with the threat of falling bombs, evacuation and enemy invasion. 

After Stanley’s house is hit by a bomb, he is evacuated to the safety of the countryside. But Frost Hollow Hall is an eerie and mysterious place with a lake that holds a dark secret. 

Not far away, Olive finds a German soldier washed up on the beach at Budmouth Point. But with the body comes the discovery of an impending Nazi invasion on Olive’s beloved village. 

Nearby, Velvet is used to the sound of the air raid siren warning of incoming enemy planes. The air raid shelter keeps the townspeople safe when the bombs are falling but when a new warden bans pets from entering the shelter, Velvet begins a hunt for a new safe house.  

The three stories are told with one interlinking character and protagonists from some of Carroll’s other novels are woven in creating a complex and exciting book universe. The resilience, resourcefulness and wit of the characters is what makes them so likeable and real in a historic world very different to our own modern day. 

Emma Carroll has fast become the Queen of historical fiction with her meticulously researched stories that can be enjoyed by children and adults alike. 

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