Author: Heather Morris
Started: September 29, 2023
Finished: October 3, 2023
Genre: Historical Fiction
Norah Chambers and a group of other women become prisoners of war when their escape ships from Singapore are bombed and they are taken hostage by the Japanese. They are kept in the jungle for the duration of World War II. During this time, they deal with all manner of challenges from four of the women amongst them being chosen to "entertain" the Japanese soldiers to hunger and the death of their fellow hostages. By war's end, these women have formed a sisterhood that will remain with them always.
This was a half-and-half book for me. While the true story is compelling and I am glad that I read it and can now speak of and celebrate these women, I found the writing at the start of the book to be sophomoric. While I have no doubt that there was a strong camaraderie between the women, Morris, at times, especially at the beginning of their imprisonment, makes it seem as if the women are at a long-term pajama party. The writing does improve some in the last part of the novel which makes for a fast read. One of the best parts of the book is the brief description of the women mentioned throughout the story. It was wonderful to learn a little about them. The roles women played in World War II are often diminished or never discussed but it is so important that their stories are told.