Welcome to the Blog Tour & Giveaway for When the Heart Sings by Liz Tolsma, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!
ABOUT THE BOOK
Title: When the Heart Sings
Series: Music of Hope #2
Author: Liz Tolsma
Publisher: Gilead Publishing
Release Date: October 9, 2018
Genre: Historical Fiction/Romance
Natia has a secret, and she’s hiding him right beneath her captor’s nose…
The Nazis have forced Natia and Teodor from their Polish farm to a labor camp. When the couple is separated, Natia is chosen to be the housekeeper for the camp’s overseer, and Teodor is sent to work in the factory. Despite the strict camp rules—and the consequences for disobeying them—Natia finds a way to communicate with Teodor by sending messages through song as she passes Teodor’s dormitory.
The stakes get higher when Natia finds a Jewish orphan on the overseer’s doorstep. She is determined to protect the boy and raise him as the child she and her husband were unable to bear— but if her German captors discover how much she’s hiding, both she and Teodor may pay the ultimate price.
Liz Tolsma is a specialist in writing World War Two fiction from a variety of perspectives. The characters are usually ordinary people caught up in the horror of war, both in Europe and Asia. In When the Heart Sings, Tolsma focuses on Polish Christians displaced from their farms due to the Nazi concept of Lebensraum. Still recovering from a stillbirth, Natia endured a journey through Poland via cattle car but almost collapsed on arrival in the town that would become her home. If not for Elfriede Fromm, the wife of the labor camp’s overseer, Natia would’ve probably been murdered on the spot. Others weren’t so lucky.
And so readers get their first taste of the violence that occurs throughout the book. I’m not naïve about the Nazis – my mother’s childhood friend lost family members during the Holocaust – but do I want to read about their atrocities in such graphic detail? For this reason, I could only read the book in limited portions. From start to end, this book is not easy reading: even the beginning focuses on the difficult birth of Natia’s stillborn boy. The blessing in When the Heart Sings is the friendship that develops between Natia and Elfriede. Elfriede, although technically the enemy, comes across as a sympathetic character. She lives in fear of her husband, forced to acknowledge that he’s not the man she thought she had married. All she has is her position as daughter of a high-ranking Nazi officer.
The ending focuses on Teodor and Natia, but I wanted to know what happened to a couple of the other major characters. The book ended on a hopeful note, but I knew it couldn’t be the case. Poland’s borders were changed, and the country became part of the Soviet Bloc. How did those events affect the characters I had come to know and love? Sadly, I’ll never know. But the head and the heart often see things differently. Although I thought that the resolution was slightly improbable, it created an emotion in me that I didn’t expect. I closed the book and the tears were running down my cheeks. It’s a rare book that does that.
Thank you to JustRead Publicity Tours and Gilead Publishing for my copy of When the Heart Sings. The above thoughts on this title are my own.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
(1) winner will receive (US only)
- a print copy of When the Heart Sings
- ‘Just One More Chapter’ throw pillow seen HERE
Enter via the Rafflecopter giveaway below. Giveaway will begin at midnight November 26, 2018 and last through 11:59pm December 3, 2018. US only. Winners will be notified within a week of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen.
Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.
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