Tuesday, April 11, 2023

Under the Cover of Mercy by Rebecca Connolly


November, 1914.

The Great War has come to Brussels, the Germans have occupied the city, and Edith Cavell, Head Nurse at Berkendael Medical Institute, faces an impossible situation. As matron of a designated Red Cross hospital, Edith has sworn an oath to help any who are wounded, under whatever flag they are found. But Governor von Luttwitz, the ranking German officer, has additional orders for her. She and her nurses must also stand guard over the wounded Allied prisoners of war and prevent them from escaping.

Edith feels that God called her to be a healer, not a jailer. How can she heal these broken boys, only to allow them to be returned to the hands of their oppressors to be beaten again?

So when members of the Belgian resistance, desperate for help, bring two wounded British soldiers to her hospital in secret, she makes a decision that will change everything: she will heal the soldiers, and then attempt to smuggle them out of the hospital to freedom.

With her loyal friend and fellow nurse, Elizabeth, by her side, Edith establishes her hospital as a safe house for the resistance, laboring tirelessly to save as many soldiers as she can. Working under the watchful eyes of the German army, Edith faces challenging odds and charges of treason--which carries the death penalty if she is caught--as she fights alongside the resistance to bring--and keep--hope to her small corner of a war-torn world.

Based on a true story, Under the Cover of Mercy is the remarkable account of one woman who defied an entire nation in order to heal those who needed her help the most.

Here's the thing about historical fiction.  It is awesome to learn about events and people from the past but sometimes it is heart wrenching.  The lessons from the past always come at a cost.  But, I love it because these people deserve to be remembered.  Especially, in this particular instance, Edith Cavell.

Edith Cavell.  Dedicated, brave, kind.  She was a born healer and care taker of humans no matter who they were.  I loved her ability to defuse situations and bring calm.  Her contribution to saving people and helping the cause during the war was selfless.  Inspiring.  Would I do the same?  Could I?  I really don't know.  I'm not sure I could.  It really gave me food for thought while reading this book.

This book is told in dual perspective from Edith and her trusted friend and fellow nurse, Elizabeth.  This isn't a romance.  It is set during war so while there are many successes for Edith and those helping her but there are also many losses.  Prepare your heart.  This one will have you thinking and feeling all kinds of thoughts and emotions.

I loved the pictures in the back.  Putting a real face to a real name and real events is priceless.  So awesome.  

I just learned of you, Edith Cavell, and I admire you.  Thank you for saving people and making a difference in the world.  You are not forgotten.

Content:  war time peril and violence but nothing graphic in nature.  Christian elements.

- I received a complimentary copy of this book.  All opinions expressed are my own.

About the Author: 

REBECCA CONNOLLY is the author of more than two dozen novels. She calls herself a Midwest girl, having lived in Ohio and Indiana. She’s always been a bookworm, and her grandma would send her books almost every month so she would never run out. Bookfairs were her carnival, and libraries are her happy place. She received a master’s degree from West Virginia University. Learn more about Rebecca and her books at rebeccaconnolly.com

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