BOOK FUN MAGAZINE - FREE READ

HOW HUGE THE NIGHT by HEATHER & LYDIA MUNN - REVIEWED




This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
How Huge the Night
Kregel Publications (March 9, 2011)
by
Heather Munn and Lydia Munn


ABOUT THE AUTHORS:

Heather Munn was born in Northern Ireland of American parents and grew up in the south of France. She decided to be a writer at the age of five when her mother read Laura Ingalls Wilder’s books aloud, but worried that she couldn’t write about her childhood since she didn’t remember it. When she was young, her favorite time of day was after supper when the family would gather and her father would read a chapter from a novel. Heather went to French school until her teens, and grew up hearing the story of Le Chambonsur-Lignon, only an hour’s drive away. She now lives in rural Illinois with her husband, Paul, where they offer free spiritual retreats to people coming out of homelessness and addiction. She enjoys wandering in the woods, gardening, writing, and splitting wood.


Lydia Munn was homeschooled for five years because there was no school where her family served as missionaries in the savannahs of northern Brazil. There was no public library either, but Lydia read every book she could get her hands on. This led naturally to her choice of an English major at Wheaton College. Her original plan to teach high school English gradually transitioned into a lifelong love of teaching the Bible to both adults and young people as a missionary in France. She and her husband, Jim, have two children: their son, Robin, and their daughter, Heather.
ABOUT THE BOOK

Fifteen-year-old Julien Losier just wants to fit in. But after his family moves to a small village in central France in hopes of outrunning the Nazis, he is suddenly faced with bigger challenges than the taunting of local teens.

Nina Krenkel left her country to obey her father's dying command: Take your brother and leave Austria. Burn your papers. Tell no one you are Jews. Alone and on the run, she arrives in Tanieux, France, dangerously ill and in despair.

Thrown together by the chaos of war, Julien begins to feel the terrible weight of the looming conflict and Nina fights to survive. As France falls to the Nazis, Julien struggles with doing what is right, even if it is not enough-and wonders whether or not he really can save Nina from almost certain death.

Based on the true story of the town of Le Chambon-the only French town honored by Israel for rescuing Jews from the Holocaust-How Huge the Night is a compelling, coming-of-age drama that will keep teens turning the pages as it teaches them about a fascinating period of history and inspires them to think more deeply about their everyday choices.

Endorsements“The Munns have written an engrossing historical novel that is faithful to the actual events of World War II in western Europe during the tumultuous year 1940. But How Huge the Night is more than good history; it is particularly refreshing because the reader sees the conflict through the lives of teenagers who are forced to grapple with their honest questions about the existence and goodness of God in the midst of community, family, and ethnic tensions in war-ravaged France.”—Lyle W. Dorsett, Billy Graham Professor of Evangelism, Beeson Divinity School, Samford University

“Seldom have the horrors of war upon adolescents—or the heroism of which they are capable—been so clearly portrayed. I loved this coming-of-age story.”—Patricia Sprinkle, author of Hold Up the Sky

“The book expertly weaves together the lives of its characters at a frightening moment in conflicted times. As we read of their moral dilemmas and of their choices, we too wonder, Would I do has these in the story have done?”—Karen Mains, Director, Hungry Souls
If you would like to read an excerpt from How Huge the Night, go HERE

Watch the book video:



REVIEW
HOW HUGE THE NIGHT
By Heather Munn and Lydia Munn
Published by Kregel Publications
ISBN#978-0-8254-3310-8
304 Pages


Back Cover: Fifteen-year-old Julien Losier just wants to fit in. But after his family moves to a small village in central France in hopes of outrunning the Nazis, he is suddenly faced with bigger challenges than the taunting of local teens.

Nina Krenkel left her country to obey her father's dying command: Take your brother and leave Austria. Burn your papers. Tell no one you are Jews. Alone and on the run, she arrives in Tanieux, France, dangerously ill and in despair.

Thrown together by the chaos of war, Julien begins to feel the terrible weight of the looming conflict and Nina fights to survive. As France falls to the Nazis, Julien struggles with doing what is right, even if it is not enough-and wonders whether or not he really can save Nina from almost certain death.

Based on the true story of the town of Le Chambon-the only French town honored by Israel for rescuing Jews from the Holocaust-How Huge the Night is a compelling, coming-of-age drama that will keep teens turning the pages as it teaches them about a fascinating period of history and inspires them to think more deeply about their everyday choices.

Review: Most of the books I’ve read about the Nazi’s were from an adult point of view. I enjoyed the review copy of this book which had the reader experience the war through the eyes of adolescents.

Not all parents were as helpful or took the time to explain life and events to their children like Julian Lozier’s parents did. He was fifteen-year-old and his parents wanted him to understand and process certain events so he could realize how it would impact their world.

Julian and his family fled to Southern France in hopes of avoiding Hitler’s threatening clutches. Julian is angry and confused by all the changes so were many of the other kids at school. Then there were children like Nina and Gustav’s whose world came to a complete halt when their father died and left them all alone and on the run for their lives! Who could they trust? Where would they hide so they didn’t get taken to a concentration camp?

The author notes filled in some blanks from real historical events for me. I found it interesting as they discussed so many choices people had during this time period. Heather and Lydia say, “Some got rich off the black market…Some used the Nazi’s for revenge, feeding them true and false information against their enemies. Some followed the law unquestionably; some just survived, and others were “wait-its,” who chose not to get involved. Some vowed to fight the Germans to the bitter end and started the resistance, which in the early days seemed completely doomed. And a few chose to focus on those in the deepest need and danger, and protect them from harm!”

It was fascinating and frightful to read about how all these choices played out. I hadn’t thought about all the choices people made then in this way before. It was interesting to read about them through youthful eyes, minds and hearts.


I highly recommend this moving story that touch my heart and gave me a peek at how scary this event was for the children and how they looked at their future. Some parts were horrifying and unbelievable what these young ones went through to survive on their own. I’m so glad the authors showed how some people went above and beyond – even to the point of putting themselves in danger to help young people and their families thrive!


Nora St.Laurent
The Book Club Network www.bookfun.org

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for reviewing our book! I'm so very glad you liked it, and I enjoyed reading your review. I love that you really got the stuff about choices... man, I will never get over being fascinated by that.

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