When We Danced at the End of the Pier by Sandy Taylor
Series: Brighton Girls Trilogy #1
Published March 31st, 2017
Genres: Romance, Historical Fiction, YA
* Received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you very much! This doesn’t affect the review in any way. My opinions are, as always, my own.*
Brighton 1930: Maureen O’Connell is a carefree girl, but her family is on the brink of tragedy, war is looming and life will never be the same again.
Jack and Nelson have always been dear friends to Maureen. Despite their different backgrounds, they’ve seen each other through thick and thin.
As Maureen blossoms from a little girl into a young woman, the candle she’s always held for Jack burns bright. But just as she’s found love, war wrenches them apart. The man she cherishes with all her heart is leaving.
When the bombs start to fall, Maureen and her family find themselves living in the most dangerous of times. With Jack no longer by her side and Nelson at war, Maureen has never felt more alone. Can she look to a brighter future? And will she find the true happiness she’s dreamt of?
An utterly gripping and heart-wrenching story about the enduring power of love, hope and friendship during the darkest of days. Perfect for fans of Pam Jenoff, Nadine Dorries and Diney Costeloe.
“A Heartbreaking Novel of Family Tragedy and Wartime Romance”
Finally, a historical fiction book that I like!! True, I haven’t tried many… But they never seem appealing and this one sounded finally appealing to me!
So, basically there are two other books in this trilogy, and they were written before this one, but this became the first book. So if you haven’t read the other books I would recommend reading this one first because you will know what the other books will be about after reading this one!
This is such an amazingly beautiful story! I absolutely loved how we start by seeing the characters as kids and as the novel goes forward it’s like we grow with the characters. We see them change, we see them adapt to life; it’s just such a nice way to connect to the characters and they were amazingly developed!
This started really light because they were kids and slowly developed to a more serious feeling. Plus, there’s a bit of a dark humor to this novel that turns it just perfect!
Sometimes I am a bit worried about reading a book where the principal character(s) is a kid because I rarely can connect and they always feel too… well, kiddish. But this one doesn’t! It actually turns it even more special! I loved how we could feel their innocence and sincereness, and how heartwarming and clever it was.
The characters were fantastic, especially Brenda at 6 years old! She was the cutest most honest thing! But I loved all of them, especially the sister’s relation! They are such special characters and Maureen is such a strong person! But the writing was just phenomenal! It was just so perfect for this book. It was funny, it was emotional and it was exciting. This is an extraordinary story about growing up, friendship, love, grief, and hope in a time of war.
I don’t know what to say more, but I do know that although I said a lot, it is NOT enough to describe how much I loved this book, it definitely stole my heart. The only thing about this book and the reason I didn’t give it 5 stars is that it’s a very predictable story. And I was expecting something happening that I didn’t expect and that never happened… So that’s the only thing amiss.
This is one of my favorite books and I will definitely buy this book and all the others from the collection!! I for sure recommend it even if you are not a fan of historical fiction!
What’s your favorite historical fiction book featuring World War II?