It’s time for another blog tour! Today is my stop on the tour for We’ve Come to Take You Home, a historical fiction/contemporary crossover novel by Susan Gandar. I was intrigued by the blurb so I couldn’t wait to take part in this tour. There’s also a giveaway for a signed copy of the book at the end of this post!
Historical fiction is one genre that I’m a little inexperienced in. I haven’t read many at all so whenever a book comes along within this genre I’m always a little skeptical – will I actually like it or will I be bogged down by any old-fashioned language or characterisations? We’ve Come to Take You Home, a novel which switches between contemporary and wartime narratives, proved that I really need to be less scared of historical fiction because I really enjoyed it.
The first narrative we get is of Sam, a young girl who really isn’t having a great time: her mother has asked her father to leave, and soon after he is involved in a car accident that sends him straight to Intensive Care. The second narrative happens several decades earlier, during the first world war. 15-year-old Jess and her family suffer from the devastating loss of her father when he is killed in battle, sending the rest of the family into poverty. Jess leaves for London to work as a maid in a Major’s home, working up to eighteen hours a day with no pay – can this life be better than her war-torn home?
I really enjoyed the characterisations and the depth in which the characters were written, especially in Jess’ narrative. I did wonder a few times throughout the story why Sam’s perspective was needed, though; I found myself getting far more engrossed and emotionally involved in Jess’ storyline, and less so with Sam’s. The switchover between the narratives was a little confusing to begin with too. It took me a few chapters to completely understand what was happening, but when I knew how it worked it was usually easy to distinguish between the two. The ending was a bit confusing as well and I had to re-read the last few chapters to get to grips with what happened. Overall, though, I really enjoyed the story once I understood it – I especially liked Jess’ story.
Another thing that I liked – and one feature that I usually like in novels – was the quick and snappy length of the chapters. Each chapter is no more than about four or five pages in length and it made me read the book very quickly.
If you’re looking for a book that has multiple perspectives, heart-wrenching emotion and great characterisations, this is definitely the book for you.