German Born but British Through and Through – “The Whispers of War” by Julia Kelly

I’m not sure what I expected when I chose “The Whispers of War” for my next read but expectations aside, the resulting narrative is delivered by an old friend of Nora’s recently deceased grandmother Marie. Although she was born in Germany, Marie was British through and through and she never questioned her allegiance to England. She WAS and always would be a British subject. Period. So imagine her surprise at learning that her grandmother Marie had lived with the fear of being classified as a “foreign alien” and sent to one of the many internment camps. That’s a frightening scenario for anyone but especially so for the naive young woman who suddenly finds herself confronted with that scary possibility.

This was a time of uncertainty that few had ever experienced and living in constant fear of being “exposed” by friends and even family took a mighty toll on that segment of the population.That is a fear that seeps into one’s bones and can have paranoia creeping into the psyche of otherwise healthy “normal” citizens. It makes everyday life scary indeed and the phrase “waiting for the other shoe to drop” takes on a whole new meaning.

Learning of and understanding her grandmother’s life during that time gave Nora an entirely new perspective and helped her find the right words to deliver for Marie’s eulogy. Three and a half stars.

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