Wow Just wow This book is astonishing If you think there is nothing new to learn about World War II, it will definitely prove you wrong The writing is lovely clean and simple, but with spot on descriptions that involve all the senses The plot is truly gripping and compelling And the characters I loved so many of them and I really loved that with maybe one exception , they were drawn in shades of grey Even the most evil people had a tiny moment a millisecond of grace Which did not, by any means, make their actions seem less evil quite the opposite, in fact But I felt that Ms McCrina envisioned her entire cast of characters as complete human beings, in all their messy complexity, and she managed to convey this to her readers.The setting is one I knew pretty much nothing about the action takes place in the city of Lviv, which was then in Poland, and is now in Ukraine And a great deal of the fighting is between Poles and Ukrainians the addition of Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia only make the long running conflict between these two groups bitter.It is hard to write anything at all about the plot without giving major points away, so I will just say that it is quite twisty, and fascinating The title, Traitor, describes than one person, for sure, but isn t a perfect characterization of anyone The structure is fascinating Two teenage soldiers cross paths, and alternating sections of the book are written from each young man s perspective.I want to add a caveat This truly excellent book is really hard to read in places, because of the horrific violence some of the young people see and endure I think I will be haunted by it for a good while to come If you know that you, like me, don t do well with violence, I still think you will find it very worthwhile, but be warned that some fairly shocking things happen.Also, the fate of the Jewish citizens in Poland is certainly alluded to, and described pretty graphically in one scene, but it is not a major concern of any of the characters, so the book does not center on it So, although it is a novel about WWII Poland Ukraine, it is not a Holocaust narrative.Finally, the book is crying out for a sequel It doesn t end on an awful cliffhanger, but I really wanted to know what would happen next.In sum Beautifully written and well worth reading. Poland, After The Soviet Liberation Of Lw W From Germany, The City Remains A Battleground Between Resistance Fighters And Insurgent Armies, Its Loyalties Torn Between Poland And Ukraine Seventeen Year Old Tolya Korolenko Is Half Ukrainian, Half Polish, And He Joined The Soviet Red Army To Keep Himself Alive And Fed When He Not Quite Accidentally Shoots His Unit S Political Officer In The Street, He S Rescued By A Squad Of Ukrainian Freedom Fighters They Might Have Saved Him, But Tolya Doesn T Trust Them He Especially Doesn T Trust Solovey, The Squad S War Scarred Young Leader, Who Has Plenty Of Secrets Of His OwnThen A Betrayal Sends Them Both On The Run And In A City Where Loyalty Comes Second To Self Preservation, A Traitor Can Be An Enemy Or A Savior Or Sometimes Both I received this ARC for free courtesy of YALLWEST, thanks again As stated on the back, the book comes out 8 25 20 Traitor is a novel that takes place in WWII, following half Ukrainian and half Polish seventeen year old Tolya Korolenko After shooting his unit s political officer, he s saved by Ukrainian freedom fighters, including squad leader Solovey However, a betrayal sends them both running, and a traitor can be an enemy or savior, or both.I m going to try to keep this spoiler free The title is perfect for this book, in my opinion It fits so many aspects of the novel, not just the betrayal mentioned in the book summary.There are a lot of moral gray areas for the characters, and you can see them flounder and struggle with their ethics and morals WWII, as all of us know, was a brutal war, and this book makes no exceptions There s a lot of death, a lot of sadness, and a lot of well written characters that have tragic backstories, or tragic occurrences throughout the novel.There are also a lot of twists in the novel, however, each twist is important, and I think it helps develop the story as a whole, rather than detracting from it I was invested in the characters, and the twists that occurred made me even curious about what would happen next I think the dual POV really worked well too, which kept up the tension and my developing interest in the story.The dialogue was really great too I liked the interrogations, as they felt realistic, and I liked the humor in the dialogue, especially in Aleksey s chapters when he is talking to Mykola As mentioned, the dual POV works for this novel, and the two points of view we see are Tolya who is in third person and Aleksey who is in first person Overall, it was a fantastic read, and I highly recommend it if the premise interests you Favorite Character MykolaLeast Favorite Character Vitalik Thank you net galley for the advance reader copy of this novel This was a YA novel set in WWII Poland Ukraine and deals with the many different groups that try to seize power from the polish Resistance, to the UPA, to the NVKD, to the Nazis I have not read a novel about this area and time period before and it was so rich in detail and character Tolya is a main character and his story and the story of Solovey are told in alternating chapters and timelines I really had to train my brain to remember who was with what group when to pull the story together The title of the book, traitor, is also the theme of the novel as the characters are forced at different times to be a part of different groups Well researched, well written and shines light on what it means to be a traitor I loved every single page of this and hope to see by this author This is my first ever Netgalley book and I apologize for being tardy with my review The setting is Poland 1944 in and around the city Lwow Lviv The story is told in third party narration and is split between two young men Tolya and Solovey as they negotiate their way through a city that is being fought over by Polish resistance fighters, The UPA, and the NVKD If those initials were foreign to you they were to me as well Ms McCrina does an admirable job of trying to convey a very complicated history between the Ukraine, Poland and Russia.Those individuals who like plenty of action will not be disappointed Both our characters are frequently in danger and have to navigate their way through some tight situations There are plenty of close escapes, who can be trusted moments but also quiet moments to punctuate the chaos The true pull of the story for me though was the richly drawn characters of both Tolya and Solovey It is heartbreaking at times to read about Tolya s despair at fitting in neither with Poland or Ukraine due to circumstances of birth he has no control over Equally heartbreaking is the relationship between Solovey and his brother Myklov Other supporting characters are also interesting and add depth This is a book that I thought about even while I was not reading it I d love to learn about that area and fortunately the author gives us some additional sources to peruse.I do have one quibble with the book and, without being spoilery, and that is the ending Ms mcCrina, how could you This is also a book that I think will have appeal to a very specific teen audience but will have cross over appeal for those adults interested in a different aspect of World War II. I received an ARC the book will be published in August 2020 from a virtual book con Usually historical fiction is not the type of book that I would go for but I had entered the contest for this particular book for my daughter who loves WW2 and that time era When it arrived she was so busy with her new virtual student life that I decided to give it a go And I m glad I did It was such an amazing book full of twists and turns I really fell in love with the characters They had a lot of thinking they had to do for themselves There were a lot of twists turns throughout the book I couldn t put it down and I highly recommend it The Official Cover Reveal for Traitor A Novel of World War II was 2 26 20 My Blog Bookstagram Twitter Pinterest Facebook
Amanda McCrina was born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia She received her BA in History and Political Science from the University of West Georgia She currently lives in Franklin, Tennessee.She writes historical fiction for teens and political fantasy for adults.
- 368 pages
- Amanda McCrina
- 08 January 2019 Amanda McCrina