I’m a coffee-fueled, hobby-addicted bibliophage who makes cruelty-free mineral eye shadows (inspired by novels). I’m usually in front of a screen (writing, reading, or gaming), but I’ve been known to emerge for geekery, good food, and dark chocolate.
Synopsis according to Goodreads:
“Sophie FitzOsborne lives in a crumbling castle in the tiny island kingdom of Montmaray with her eccentric and impoverished royal family. When she receives a journal for her sixteenth birthday, Sophie decides to chronicle day-to-day life on the island. But this is 1936, and the news that trickles in from the mainland reveals a world on the brink of war. The politics of Europe seem far away from their remote island—until two German officers land a boat on Montmaray. And then suddenly politics become very personal indeed.“
A Brief History of Montmaray is historical fiction coming-of-age done with nuance, honesty, and a healthy dose of awesome.
I’m not a huge fan of the 1930’s, or WWII history, so I wasn’t totally sold on the premise. But the book centered on a clutch of delightfully real characters and by the time war appeared in the novel I was already hooked.
This book is thrilling, after a certain point, and has a bit of everything- humor, romance, intrigue, and more.
Fans of I Capture the Castle and similar crumbling dynasty stories will really like this, as will fans of 1930’s historical fiction, and coming-of-age stories. I recommend it for everyone, really. Especially if you can get it on audiobook- Emma Bering does the accents beautifully, and I swear her voice (as Sophie’s) gets more mature as she goes on, reflecting the passage of time and trauma.