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The Resource Everyone brave is forgiven, Chris Cleave

Everyone brave is forgiven, Chris Cleave

Label
Everyone brave is forgiven
Title
Everyone brave is forgiven
Statement of responsibility
Chris Cleave
Creator
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
Set in London during the years of 1939-1942, when citizens had slim hope of survival, much less victory; and on the strategic island of Malta, which was daily devastated by the Axis barrage, Everyone Brave is Forgiven features little-known history and a perfect wartime love story inspired by the real-life love letters between Chris Cleave's grandparents. This dazzling novel dares us to understand that, against the great theater of world events, it is the intimate losses, the small battles, the daily human triumphs that change us most
Storyline
Tone
Writing style
Character
Award
LibraryReads Favorites, 2016.
Review
  • Loosely based on his grandparents’ WWII-era lives, Cleave’s (Gold, 2012; Little Bee, 2009) intensely felt new novel follows the soul-plumbing journeys of four young Londoners fighting their own personal battles as their world breaks apart. They include aristocratic Mary North, who derives unexpected purpose from teaching city children after their more socially acceptable peers are evacuated to the countryside; her friend Hilda; Tom, Mary’s middle-class supervisor and lover, and his roommate, Alistair, a Royal Artillery officer. Mary and Alistair’s mutual attraction complicates matters yet serves as a lifeline for them both. Just as transformative for Mary are her mentorship of an African American student, which almost everyone disapproves of, and her up-and-down relationship with Hilda, one shaped by their joint experiences and occasional jealousy. Full of insight and memorably original phrasings, the story is leavened by sardonic humor, although the consistently high level of wit in the dialogue sometimes feels unrealistic. Cleave paints an emotion-filled portrait of a damaged city with its inequities amplified by war and of courageous individuals whose connections to one another make them stronger. -- Johnson, Sarah (Reviewed 3/1/2016) (Booklist, vol 112, number 13, p49)
  • Set during World War II and loosely based on the author's own grandparents, this was a strikingly honest look at the changes that war creates on a country's landscape and its people. These changes were so strongly shown by the progressive style of this novel. Bit by bit, we are privy to each character's transformation. What a great tribute to what they endured. War gives birth to many endings, also to many beginnings. Bittersweet. -- Lori Elliott, Kershaw County Library, SC. (LibraryReads, May 2016)
  • /* Starred Review */ When war is declared in London in 1939, Mary rushes to the War Office to sign up. She is assigned to be a teacher (not the glamorous war job she’d pictured), but the children soon win her over, especially a child in her class named Zachary. When her class is evacuated to the country, Mary persuades Tom, her lover and a school administrator, to allow her to teach a small group of rejected children who are forced to remain. Meanwhile, Tom’s roommate, Alistair, volunteers for the army and must endure a horrifying retreat in France before assignment to the island of Malta, where he and his fellow soldiers receive little food and are constantly under fire. On leave between assignments, Alistair meets Mary and the two are instantly attracted to each other despite their loyalties to Tom. Slowly at first, they begin corresponding as the war plunges forward and the personal losses pile up. Real, engaging characters, based loosely on Cleave’s (Little Bee ) own grandparents, come alive on the page. Insightful, stark, and heartbreaking, Cleave’s latest novel portrays the irrepressible hopefulness that can arise in the face of catastrophe. Agent: Jennifer Joel, ICM Partners. (May) --Staff (Reviewed January 25, 2016) (Publishers Weekly, vol 263, issue 04, p)
  • Privileged young Londoners lose their sense of entitlement and their moral innocence in Cleave's (Gold, 2012, etc.) romantic but very adult World War II love story. In 1939, Mary North and her friend Hilda are cosseted upper-class girls used to servants and tea at the Ritz. But as soon as England declares war, 18-year-old Mary quits finishing school and signs up to serve through the War Office. Sent to an elementary school, she is disappointed when practically her first task is to help evacuate her students from London. Looking for another teaching position, she meets 23-year-old Tom Shaw, who runs the school district. Melancholy iconoclast Tom does not enlist, believing "someone must stay behind who understands how to put it all back together," but his more debonair roommate, Alistair, a conservator at the Tate, does join up. At first Alistair's brutal experiences on the battlefront offer a stark contrast to the ease of the Londoners' lives. Mary relishes teaching misfit children who remain in London, forming a particular bond with 10-year-old Zachary, a black American—the era's racial prejudice becomes an undercurrent throughout the novel. Mary and Tom fall into heady love. Hilda remains a boy-crazy snob. When Alistair comes home on leave, the four spend an evening together. Hilda is attracted to Alistair, who is drawn to Mary, who is attracted back but does her best to remain loyal to Tom, who secretly tries to enlist but is turned down. Alistair ends up on Malta facing dire conditions under the Axis blockade. Meanwhile, the Blitz hits London. Suddenly no one is safe, and all face harsh realities. While Mary, Tom, and Alistair are all deeply complicated beneath their bantering wit, it is secondary character Hilda who grabs the reader's heart as she evolves from Noel Coward joke into full-fledged human being. Among all the recent fictions about the war, Cleave's miniseries of a novel is a surprising standout, with irresistibly engaging characters who sharply illuminate issues of class, race, and wartime morality.(Kirkus Reviews, March 1, 2016)
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
10470679
Cataloging source
DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Cleave, Chris
Dewey number
823/.92
Illustrations
illustrations
Index
no index present
Literary form
fiction
Nature of contents
bibliography
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • World War (1939-1945)
  • Socialites
  • World War, 1939-1945
  • Triangles (Interpersonal relations)
  • Socialites
  • Triangles (Interpersonal relations)
  • England
Label
Everyone brave is forgiven, Chris Cleave
Instantiates
Publication
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references (page 424)
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Control code
1525846
Dimensions
25 cm
Edition
First Simon & Schuster hardcover edition.
Extent
424 pages
Isbn
9781501124372
Lccn
2015028632
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
Other physical details
illustrations
System control number
  • (Sirsi) i9781501124372
  • (OCoLC)915323922
Label
Everyone brave is forgiven, Chris Cleave
Publication
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references (page 424)
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Control code
1525846
Dimensions
25 cm
Edition
First Simon & Schuster hardcover edition.
Extent
424 pages
Isbn
9781501124372
Lccn
2015028632
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
Other physical details
illustrations
System control number
  • (Sirsi) i9781501124372
  • (OCoLC)915323922

Library Locations

    • Carver BranchBorrow it
      1161 Angelina St., Austin, TX, 78702, US
      30.2695584 -97.7240278
    • Central LibraryBorrow it
      710 W. Cesar Chavez St, Austin, TX, 78701, US
      30.2713021 -97.7460168
    • Spicewood Springs BranchBorrow it
      8637 Spicewood Springs Rd., Austin, TX, 78759, US
      30.4337083 -97.7730809
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