Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Lost in Time with In Perfect Time

In Perfect Time by Sarah Sundin is a brilliant tale of romance on the front lines during World War II. Sarah blends true to life historic events with multi-dimensional fictional characters to paint a captivating picture of romance during wartime in the 1940s in and around Italy.

It is the story of a young, troubled flight nurse searching for redemption and finding true love in the process and of a young pilot trying to escape his past by sitting out future possibilities whose defenses are shattered by true love.

I have read two other books in this series and am left wanting to know these characters even more. I was excited to get the opportunity from the publisher to receive a copy of the book in exchange for my honest opinion.

Critique

Writing: Sarah's writing is descriptive prose, blended with action, humor, compassion and romance. In Perfect Time is no different.
Sundin explores the struggles her hero and heroine have in truly accepting the gift of faith and overcoming internal struggles while on the front lines of WWII.

The prose and dialogue are very well balanced and engage us deeper with the story. Through alternating chapters that focus on each character, Sundin tells us the stories of Kay and Roger with a pace that makes it hard to put down. Each character has a complexity that make them seem like real people. Flawed and wounded by what life has dealt thus far, both Kay and Roger put up defenses to control who they let in. Kay, who has a reputation of being a loose flirt, searches for acceptance through her relationships. Roger, who doesn't trust himself, puts walls of defense around him to keep from finding his true passion.

The backdrop of the war and the internal struggles each character faces provide plenty of tension. The romantic angst, however, is off the charts as each character becomes so handicapped by own inner battles they nearly miss the gift of love and acceptance in front of them.

Sundin brings back the characters from her two previous novels and helps tie up some loose ends. I am glad I got to know this group of nightingales and their men.

Historical significance: Sundin's immense knowledge of both World War II and nursing brings much credibility to the storyline. The settings are so vividly described I felt transported to an army base in Italy or a remote German cave. Sundin depicts 1940s culture, and as such, some of the characters smoke and drink and defy the traditional views on sex before marriage. The war scenes include descriptions of dog fights, bombings, plundering and injury. In Perfect Time, as well as the entire series, offers a unique look at the contributions of women on the front lines during that time.

Spiritual themes of redemption, assurance and grace are strongly highlighted throughout. Each of the characters, as do many of us at times, have a difficult time understanding and fully embracing forgiveness, the free gift of God's grace and newness promised to those who have accepted Christ.

Audience: This book would appeal to women and men who enjoy historical fiction. With strong, but not pushy, spiritual overtones, both Christians and non-Christians will enjoy the entire series, which I think has a broad appeal with enough action and romance to be a feature film.

You can get In Perfect Time at Amazon and book retailers near you.