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Daughters of War

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France, 1944. Deep in the river valley of the Dordogne, in an old stone cottage on the edge of a beautiful village, three sisters long for the end of the war. Hélène, the eldest, is trying her hardest to steer her family to safety, even as the Nazi occupation becomes more threatening. Elise, the rebel, is determined to help the Resistance, whatever the cost. And Florence, the France, 1944. Deep in the river valley of the Dordogne, in an old stone cottage on the edge of a beautiful village, three sisters long for the end of the war. Hélène, the eldest, is trying her hardest to steer her family to safety, even as the Nazi occupation becomes more threatening. Elise, the rebel, is determined to help the Resistance, whatever the cost. And Florence, the dreamer, just yearns for a world where France is free. Then, one dark night, the Allies come knocking for help. And Helene knows that she cannot sit on the sidelines any longer. But bravery comes at a cost, and soon the sisters' lives become even more perilous as they fight for what is right. And secrets from their own mysterious past threaten to unravel everything they hold most dear… The first in an epic new series from the No.1 Sunday Times bestseller, Daughters of War is a stunning tale of sisters, secrets and bravery in the darkness of war-torn France…


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France, 1944. Deep in the river valley of the Dordogne, in an old stone cottage on the edge of a beautiful village, three sisters long for the end of the war. Hélène, the eldest, is trying her hardest to steer her family to safety, even as the Nazi occupation becomes more threatening. Elise, the rebel, is determined to help the Resistance, whatever the cost. And Florence, the France, 1944. Deep in the river valley of the Dordogne, in an old stone cottage on the edge of a beautiful village, three sisters long for the end of the war. Hélène, the eldest, is trying her hardest to steer her family to safety, even as the Nazi occupation becomes more threatening. Elise, the rebel, is determined to help the Resistance, whatever the cost. And Florence, the dreamer, just yearns for a world where France is free. Then, one dark night, the Allies come knocking for help. And Helene knows that she cannot sit on the sidelines any longer. But bravery comes at a cost, and soon the sisters' lives become even more perilous as they fight for what is right. And secrets from their own mysterious past threaten to unravel everything they hold most dear… The first in an epic new series from the No.1 Sunday Times bestseller, Daughters of War is a stunning tale of sisters, secrets and bravery in the darkness of war-torn France…

30 review for Daughters of War

  1. 4 out of 5

    Maureen

    ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Beautifully descriptive of the Périgord Noir, (Dordogne), ‘Daughters of War’ is set in 1944 during a time of great turbulence, with France under German occupation. Hélène, Elise and Florence are three sisters living together with the uncertainty and terror of occupation, and being the eldest, Hélène sees it as her job to keep her sisters safe. However, that becomes increasingly difficult as the Allies come seeking their help. Author, Dinah Jefferies, is a brilliant observer of the minu ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Beautifully descriptive of the Périgord Noir, (Dordogne), ‘Daughters of War’ is set in 1944 during a time of great turbulence, with France under German occupation. Hélène, Elise and Florence are three sisters living together with the uncertainty and terror of occupation, and being the eldest, Hélène sees it as her job to keep her sisters safe. However, that becomes increasingly difficult as the Allies come seeking their help. Author, Dinah Jefferies, is a brilliant observer of the minutiae of everyday life and scalpel sharp when it comes to describing the effects of war, of invasion and occupation, something that destroys communities and families and often disrupts the development of the social and economic fabric of a country, whilst at the same time she reminds us of the life saving importance of family, friendship and love. With terrific characters, and a wonderful storyline, I don’t really want to say too much about this one, other than, it is without question, one my favourite reads of 2021, and worth every one of those 5 stars! Just beautiful. *Thank you to Netgalley and HarperCollins UK for an ARC in exchange for an honest unbiased review*

  2. 4 out of 5

    Paromjit

    This is the first in an atmospheric and character driven WW2 historical trilogy set in war torn France in the latter years of the war, focusing on the repercussions of the German occupation and their French collaborators on 3 sisters and the Dordogne village of Sainte-Cecile. It is 1944, and the Baudin sisters have lost their father, Charles, and their mother, Claudette, has left for England. The sisters are close and supportive, each of them with distinctly different personalities. The eldest H This is the first in an atmospheric and character driven WW2 historical trilogy set in war torn France in the latter years of the war, focusing on the repercussions of the German occupation and their French collaborators on 3 sisters and the Dordogne village of Sainte-Cecile. It is 1944, and the Baudin sisters have lost their father, Charles, and their mother, Claudette, has left for England. The sisters are close and supportive, each of them with distinctly different personalities. The eldest Helene has taken on the maternal mantle of responsibility, and looking after her sisters, she is a nurse, working for a local doctor, Hugo Marchand. Elise is more headstrong, working at the cafe, determined to do all that she can to help the resistance, and the youngest, Florence is more of a dreamer and homebody, looking after the home, cooking, growing vegetables and taking care of the livestock, so critical with the impact of rationing. The German occupation is ruthless, unforgiving, violent and brutal, doing all they can to squash any opposition, as we see the death and destruction, the horrors and repercussions of the war on the sisters and others in Sainte-Cecile, and the inevitable tragedies and heartbreak. Each of the sisters are to face different challenges, there are family secrets, and all the dangers of resisting the Nazis. Jefferies provides rich descriptions of the location and intricate details of what life was like in this turbulent period of history making this a dark, intense and compelling read, a family drama, of intrigue, love, loss, grief, friendship, courage, and the fight for survival. This is a wonderfully complex historical read, engaging and the sisters are a wonderful characters in which to understand the devastating impact of war. I look forward to reading the next in the series. Many thanks to the publisher for an ARC.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Karren Sandercock

    Sister’s Helene, Elise and Florence Baudin live in the river valley of Dordogne in France, near the village of Sainte-Cecile and they have lived here for seven years. When their father Charles passed away, their mother Claudette took the girls to the family’s cottage in France and returned alone to England. Being the eldest Helene is responsible for looking after her younger sisters, she puts her own hopes and dreams on hold. Due to the war the sisters are unable to return to England and they ho Sister’s Helene, Elise and Florence Baudin live in the river valley of Dordogne in France, near the village of Sainte-Cecile and they have lived here for seven years. When their father Charles passed away, their mother Claudette took the girls to the family’s cottage in France and returned alone to England. Being the eldest Helene is responsible for looking after her younger sisters, she puts her own hopes and dreams on hold. Due to the war the sisters are unable to return to England and they hope no one in the village will tell the Germans they are only half French. Like everyone in France, they resent the Germans presence, and can’t wait for the allies to arrive and the war to end. Helene's caring, she helps everyone and works for the local doctor Hugo Marchant, Elise owns a small cafe in town, and Florence looks after the cottage garden, she's a wonderful cook and homemaker. All three of the sisters become involved in the fight to free France, they all face hardship, danger, loss and the challenges of living in an occupied country. Daughter of War story is full of wonderful descriptions about the beautiful French countryside, the forest near the Baudin sister’s house, and life in the village of Sainte-Cecile and how the locals all support, help each other during the terrible war years and German reprisals. Dinah Jefferies has done it again, the book is well written and I'm so excited that it’s part of a series, and I can’t wait until the next book is published and discover what else happens to Helene, Elise and Florence and especially after France has been liberated by the American's. I received a copy of this book from NetGalley and HarperCollins UK, in exchange for an honest review, if you like WW II Historical Fiction and I highly recommend Daughters of War and five stars from me. https://karrenreadsbooks.blogspot.com/

  4. 5 out of 5

    Dale Harcombe

    Three sisters, Helene, Elise and Florence Baudin live in the Perigood Noir, Dordogne. The story starts in 1944 with France under German occupation. Helen, a nurse, is very much the mother figure trying to care for her sisters. Elise runs a small cafe but is also involved with the resistance and Florence tends her garden and loves to cook. But there is much more to each of these women, who all are involved in some way in seeking to try and aid France and basically to survive during this harsh tim Three sisters, Helene, Elise and Florence Baudin live in the Perigood Noir, Dordogne. The story starts in 1944 with France under German occupation. Helen, a nurse, is very much the mother figure trying to care for her sisters. Elise runs a small cafe but is also involved with the resistance and Florence tends her garden and loves to cook. But there is much more to each of these women, who all are involved in some way in seeking to try and aid France and basically to survive during this harsh time. All of them will have to make decisions that will affect not only their lives but those of others. This is an interesting and intense read. I liked the way the relationship between the sisters was brought out. As well as being a story of war and family, secrets from the past are brought to life and there is more than one romance takes place over the course of the story. There are also incidents that will change these women’s lives forever. Triggers that will be hard to read for some people are the rape scene and the brutal slaying of people who dare to go against the Germans. This book presents a clear picture of the brutality and inhumanity of war. Thanks to BetterReading and Harper Collins publishers for my ARC to read and review. Although it took me a while to read it, this was not the book’s fault, as it did engage me. Just more life intruding. I wasn’t thrilled with the ending but I assume it does set things up ready for the next book in this series and more details will emerge in the next book. Fans of historical fiction with strong female characters should enjoy this one. A highly recommended read.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Pauline

    Daughters of War by Dinah Jefferies is the story of the German occupation of France during 1944 and the way it has altered the lives of three sisters. It highlights the brutality of war and the courage of people struggling to survive. This is the first book in a trilogy. Thank you to NetGalley and HarperCollins UK for my e-copy in exchange for an honest review.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Amanda - Mrs B's Book Reviews

    *https://mrsbbookreviews.wordpress.com British author Dinah Jefferies has produced a fantastic opener to a brand-new historical fiction series. Daughters of War is an emotive and descriptive family saga, charting the back end of the Second World War. Set in the small river valley area of Dordogne in France, Dinah Jefferies presents a shifting perspective tale, that encompasses the varied experiences of three sisters during a time of great upheaval in Europe. Each sister depicted in the story has *https://mrsbbookreviews.wordpress.com British author Dinah Jefferies has produced a fantastic opener to a brand-new historical fiction series. Daughters of War is an emotive and descriptive family saga, charting the back end of the Second World War. Set in the small river valley area of Dordogne in France, Dinah Jefferies presents a shifting perspective tale, that encompasses the varied experiences of three sisters during a time of great upheaval in Europe. Each sister depicted in the story has a very different viewpoint and experience of the war, that is expressed vividly through the penmanship of this well-versed historical fiction author. With themes of responsibility, survival, brutality, safety, protection, risk, bravery, determination, persistence and hope, Daughters of War presents a powerful ode to the war. Drawing in threads of mystery, intrigue, emotional drama, social ties, hardship and romance, Dinah Jefferies has composed an expansive novel. Daughters of War is set to a clear and beautifully presented wartime backdrop, that is fully supported by the author’s immersive style of writing. Dinah Jefferies covers invasion, resistance and occupation, all within the one highly engaging fictional family saga. I couldn’t put this one down and although it is set over five hundred pages, the story progressed quickly. Inspiring, moving, informative and highly readable, I stand firm in my full recommendation of Daughters of War. *Thanks is extended to Better Reading/HarperCollins for providing a free copy of this book for review purposes.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Alayne Emmett

    Another great book from Dinah this is the 2nd book I've read and enjoyed. I intend to read all of her books. My thanks to netgalley and the publishers for giving me the opportunity to read this book in return for an honest review. Another great book from Dinah this is the 2nd book I've read and enjoyed. I intend to read all of her books. My thanks to netgalley and the publishers for giving me the opportunity to read this book in return for an honest review.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Thebooktrail

    Booktrail the locations in the novel Daughters of War The first in what I can say is going to be one fine series. Three sisters, Helene, Elise and Florence Baudin live in a valley in Dordogne, France. Their father is dead and their mother back in England. Helene as the oldest is now the caregiver of the family and does everything in her power to keep them all safe. She practically puts her own hopes and needs to the back of her mind and ensures that the sisters’ needs are taken care of. They are Booktrail the locations in the novel Daughters of War The first in what I can say is going to be one fine series. Three sisters, Helene, Elise and Florence Baudin live in a valley in Dordogne, France. Their father is dead and their mother back in England. Helene as the oldest is now the caregiver of the family and does everything in her power to keep them all safe. She practically puts her own hopes and needs to the back of her mind and ensures that the sisters’ needs are taken care of. They are stuck in France and so can’t go to England but they are stuck in a strange situation as being only half French, they feel they are going to have extra problems living in France during war time. I loved the story about the three sisters. Dinah has given each of them a clear voice and I felt I knew every one very well by the end of the novel. One works for a doctor, another has a cafe and the third is a homemaker. Life in the village is fascinating and there is so much detail carefully crafted into this novel. I can’t imagine what life must have been like living in such a situation. Three sisters, half French and half English who are left alone to care for themselves. Three sisters who have to navigate life in a village at the time of the German invasion. Life is hard, and the losses great. What struck me was the community spirit in the family and amongst the villagers. This is such a detailed and well painted picture of what life must have been like during the German occupation. I’ve read many stories set in France during the war but never one that is so touching and moving. This was a special story with three sisters in such a rural and stunning part of France. I felt the contrast of the stunning landscape and the ugliness of war particularly well done. Dinah really got under the skin of her characters and the country at war and she painted quite the picture of war and the human emotions behind it. I have to say that there are certain scenes that are particularly heartbreaking and the ones involving rape and killing will make you cry. This is the true face of war sadly but to read it in this context really brings it home to you. This novel is multilayered and well structured, detailing the horrors of war but also the touching human moments. I love the way Dinah has such a skill at bringing her characters to life. Giving them a voice, giving war a real face and bringing the hidden stories to the fore. I am so pleased this is the first in a new series. In the hands of such a skilled author, we are in for a treat!

  9. 4 out of 5

    Cathy

    Told in alternating chapters from the point of view of Hélène, Élise and Florence, the author carefully delineates the three sisters’ personalities. Hélène is sensible, cautious and feels a keen sense of responsibility towards her younger sisters in the absence of their mother. Élise is impulsive, courageous but at times heedless of the risks to which she exposes herself and her sisters. Florence is sensitive, caring and has an instinctive feeling for the natural world.  At first, the sisters se Told in alternating chapters from the point of view of Hélène, Élise and Florence, the author carefully delineates the three sisters’ personalities. Hélène is sensible, cautious and feels a keen sense of responsibility towards her younger sisters in the absence of their mother. Élise is impulsive, courageous but at times heedless of the risks to which she exposes herself and her sisters. Florence is sensitive, caring and has an instinctive feeling for the natural world.  At first, the sisters seem to lead a charmed life, tucked away in their cottage and fortified by the food Florence seems to be able to create out of nothing.  They are also fortunate to have, or have come into their lives, three handsome men who offer them practical help, reassurance and often a little bit more. It is Hugo, the local doctor, and his wife Marie, who initially experience the realities of life under the Nazis. However, everything also changes for the sisters following a brutal encounter (the nature of which may be triggering for some) which is quite different in tone from that of the book so far.  In fact, this event signals a change to a much more dramatic storyline during which the author explores in minute detail how each of the sisters respond emotionally to the often traumatic experiences they witness. The revelation concerning their mother towards the end of the book, although resolving a mystery signalled early on, may not come as that much of a surprise to the observant reader but does bring unexpected complications. What the book does particularly well is convey the realities of life under German occupation: the violence of the Vichy-supporting Milice, the fear of reprisals for acts of sabotage by the Resistance, the shortages of food and fuel.  It’s a time of distrust, divided loyalties and uncertainty about what tomorrow might bring.  After all, how can you plan for the future when you don’t even know if you’ll be there to see it? ‘The world was cracking and splintering deep in its bowels. And people were falling through the cracks, never knowing which of them was going to meet their fate.’ Another strength of the book is its descriptions of the landscape of the Dordogne, a gift surely to the area’s tourist board.  So, through the eyes of the sisters, the reader is given a picture of ‘the languid twists of the river’ from which can be seen castles perched on high cliffs and fortified hilltop towers with old stone walls. The first in a planned trilogy, in the concluding chapters of Daughters of War the author lays the groundwork for a number of possible story arcs in subsequent books.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Kathy Simmonds

    What can I say about this book? Except that I could not put it down from the moment I started reading it. Full of suspense, mystery, intrigue, romance,, as well as soaring and beautiful descriptions of the Dordogne area of France, Daughters Of The War will get you gripped from the first to the last page. Helene, Elise and Florence are sisters, living in Sainte Cecile, a village on the Dordogne area of France. France is at war, the Nazis control the entire country. He Helene has had to be mother a What can I say about this book? Except that I could not put it down from the moment I started reading it. Full of suspense, mystery, intrigue, romance,, as well as soaring and beautiful descriptions of the Dordogne area of France, Daughters Of The War will get you gripped from the first to the last page. Helene, Elise and Florence are sisters, living in Sainte Cecile, a village on the Dordogne area of France. France is at war, the Nazis control the entire country. He Helene has had to be mother and father to her sisters since their mother left them there for England seven years earlier. Unable to return to England, the sisters make a life for themselves. Their lives seem far removed from the actual front line, yet all of their lives will be touched and changed by the war. Each will have to make decisions, hard decisions that will impact their lives irrevocably. There are a.so secrets from the past which will come back to impact them in devastating ways. The descriptions of the loveliness of the area took me to those places. I sat and watched as Florence dug her garden, as Helene tended to patients, as Elise worked in her cafe, really a cover for the resistance. The beauty of France in stark contrast to the horror of war and its effects on ordinary people will stay on my mind for a long time. This is the first in a series, recounting the lives of the three sisters. I greatly look forward to reading the next book in this series.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Minna Mäkinen

    I had such high hopes for this book and it certainly had a lot of potential. The three sisters, Helene, Elise and Florence are living in occupied France in 1944, inhabiting a small farm house on the outskirts of a small village in Dordogne. The sensible, eldest Helene, the rebellious middle child Elise and the innocent dreamer, youngest Florence. There are lots of vivid descriptions of the lush countryside and the idyllic surroundings but for me, the magic ends there. The sisters face the horrors I had such high hopes for this book and it certainly had a lot of potential. The three sisters, Helene, Elise and Florence are living in occupied France in 1944, inhabiting a small farm house on the outskirts of a small village in Dordogne. The sensible, eldest Helene, the rebellious middle child Elise and the innocent dreamer, youngest Florence. There are lots of vivid descriptions of the lush countryside and the idyllic surroundings but for me, the magic ends there. The sisters face the horrors of war but the events read like Emotions for Dummies. When sensible Helene does something daring, the author spends far too much time pointing out that this is something Helene wouldn’t normally do. I get it, she’s branching out. Men appear in and out of their lives and over a course mere hours these supposedly independent living ladies form such strong attachments to these men that they are suddenly incapable of thinking about anything else. The author really did the sisters a disservice by reducing them to bags of emotions that can only be soothed by the presence of a man. Elise’s work with the Resistance is glossed over and played out outside the main narrative, she merely goes off on a mission and comes back with no more than a few words dedicated to her work. All in all, this had so much promise but fell flat on its face. ARC courtesy of NetGalley

  12. 5 out of 5

    Helen

    Daughters of War is the first book in a family saga set in the last two years of World War II. It follows the lives of three sisters living in a small village in Vichy France. As always Dinah excels with the setting of this story - it is brilliant. The village of Sante Cecile and its inhabitants really come to life as the story narrative revolves between each of the three sisters. If this is an era and locale you are partial to you will find the book a wonderfully absorbing read - sisters strugg Daughters of War is the first book in a family saga set in the last two years of World War II. It follows the lives of three sisters living in a small village in Vichy France. As always Dinah excels with the setting of this story - it is brilliant. The village of Sante Cecile and its inhabitants really come to life as the story narrative revolves between each of the three sisters. If this is an era and locale you are partial to you will find the book a wonderfully absorbing read - sisters struggling to make sense of themselves and their place in life while under Nazi occupation. With the three varied narrations, Dinah provides three different perspectives of the impact of the war and the occupation of their village. Dinah has done her research as the horrors of war are very real and confronting. This is classic Dinah Jefferies with the evocative and rich descriptions and sense of place that you feel a part of the village yourself. Daughters of War is an engaging book on how the war affected one family in one village during World War II. It is an excellent historical fiction with all the suspense, mystery, drama and romance one has come to expect from Dinah’s books - the first in what looks to be a most compelling series. ‘She still loved the feeling of stillness once the sun was going down … the space between the days was her only chance of peace. She would sit in the darkness of the garden after her sisters were in bed and she would take a long slow breath and ground herself in her life.’ This review is based on a complimentary copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. The quoted material may have changed in the final release.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Janet

    France, 1944 & deep in the river valley of the Dordogne, in an old stone cottage on the edge of a beautiful village, three sisters long for the end of the war. Hélène, the eldest & a nurse is trying her hardest to steer her family to safety, even as the Nazi occupation becomes more threatening. Elise, the rebel who runs a cafe, is determined to help the Resistance, whatever the cost. Florence, the dreamer who loves to cook & is the gardener in the family, just yearns for a world where France is France, 1944 & deep in the river valley of the Dordogne, in an old stone cottage on the edge of a beautiful village, three sisters long for the end of the war. Hélène, the eldest & a nurse is trying her hardest to steer her family to safety, even as the Nazi occupation becomes more threatening. Elise, the rebel who runs a cafe, is determined to help the Resistance, whatever the cost. Florence, the dreamer who loves to cook & is the gardener in the family, just yearns for a world where France is free. Then, one dark night, the Allies come knocking for help. And Hélène knows that she cannot sit on the sidelines any longer. But secrets from their own mysterious past threaten to unravel everything they hold most dear The first in a trilogy & I can’t wait to read the other two books. A very well written book that had me gripped from the start & held me enthralled until the last page in the early hours of the morning. Wonderful characters & moving story took me on a plethora of emotions. I can’t recommend this book highly enough, I absolutely loved it My honest review is for a special copy I voluntarily read

  14. 5 out of 5

    Nicki

    Wow this was so good! This book hooked me right from the beginning and didn’t let go. It was one of those books that I couldn’t stop thinking about, and wondering what was going to happen next. I loved everything about it, the setting, the characters, the plot. I’ve been on holiday to the Dordogne a couple of times, so I could imagine the landscape quite easily, especially when I recognised place names in the story. I really liked the three sisters, motherly Helene, feisty Elise and Florence the Wow this was so good! This book hooked me right from the beginning and didn’t let go. It was one of those books that I couldn’t stop thinking about, and wondering what was going to happen next. I loved everything about it, the setting, the characters, the plot. I’ve been on holiday to the Dordogne a couple of times, so I could imagine the landscape quite easily, especially when I recognised place names in the story. I really liked the three sisters, motherly Helene, feisty Elise and Florence the youngest and most naive sister. I enjoyed following their different stories and loved how their characters developed throughout the story, especially when secrets are revealed and they are drawn into extremely difficult situations. I’ve read quite a few books set in World War Two, but had to stop because I found them too upsetting, especially books connected to the Holocaust. I was a bit cautious about reading this one, but I needn’t have worried as although there were some very tense moments there was only a couple of distressing scenes which were sensitively handled by the author. At times this book reminded me of Citadel by Kate Mosse, but in a good way as I love that audiobook and have listened to it twice. This is my first book by Dinah Jefferies but will definitely not be my last, as I’ll be reading the rest of the trilogy. I need to find out what happens to the sisters! Highly recommended if you enjoy historical fiction, especially set in Europe during World War Two. Thanks so much to NetGalley and HarperCollins UK for my digital copy via the NetGalley App.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Tissie

    Historical novels are dear to me. Maybe it’s the mental gymnastics that’s required to fit a specific story into a bigger and fact-checkable context; maybe it’s history itself, a subject that first caught my eye decades ago, back in high school. It’s 1944, we’re in occupied France, and we’re following the Baudin sisters, three young women who moved there from England. [Keep reading @ Bookshelves & Teacups] Historical novels are dear to me. Maybe it’s the mental gymnastics that’s required to fit a specific story into a bigger and fact-checkable context; maybe it’s history itself, a subject that first caught my eye decades ago, back in high school. It’s 1944, we’re in occupied France, and we’re following the Baudin sisters, three young women who moved there from England. [Keep reading @ Bookshelves & Teacups]

  16. 4 out of 5

    Kristin Gleeson

    A wonderful absorbing read. Set in France in the tail end of WWII, the story unfolds around three sisters, struggling to make sense of themselves and their place in life while under Nazi occupation. Helene, a nurse, is the caretaker of the family, looking out for her sisters’ welfare, often the sake of her own happiness, something their mother, safe in England and distant in more than geography, never seemed to do. Elise, the middle daughter, runs a letter drop for the resistance through her caf A wonderful absorbing read. Set in France in the tail end of WWII, the story unfolds around three sisters, struggling to make sense of themselves and their place in life while under Nazi occupation. Helene, a nurse, is the caretaker of the family, looking out for her sisters’ welfare, often the sake of her own happiness, something their mother, safe in England and distant in more than geography, never seemed to do. Elise, the middle daughter, runs a letter drop for the resistance through her cafe, a danger that fills her with excitement made even more thrilling by her love for a local resistance fighter, Victor. The youngest sister, Florence, is young, naïve, a dreamer, and finds the most peace in her garden and creative ways to make their food stores stretch. But the war won’t let them alone and the arrival of an English SEO, a German deserter, and a German translator sets all three of them on paths they would never have imagined. Told from the perspective of all three sisters, the story views the war and occupation from different angles and threads that make up the occupation. It’s filled with accurate details that leave no doubt about the horrors of war and told in such a compelling and nuanced manner the reader can’t look away. Threads of the past are deftly woven in as well to enhance the poignancy and complexity of the story. It’s a classy, classic Jeffries novel full of the usual evocative descriptions of place and the arresting colours and scents of the novel’s location. I look forward to the next book in the series.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Janette

    Daughters of War is the first book in a family saga set in the last two years of WWII. It follows the lives of three sisters living in a small village in the Dordogne which is part of Vichy France. The setting of this story is brilliant. The village of Sante Cecile and its inhabitants really comes alive as well as the area around the village. The narrative is split between the three sisters and at first, I found it difficult to really feel involved with them. However, as the story progressed and Daughters of War is the first book in a family saga set in the last two years of WWII. It follows the lives of three sisters living in a small village in the Dordogne which is part of Vichy France. The setting of this story is brilliant. The village of Sante Cecile and its inhabitants really comes alive as well as the area around the village. The narrative is split between the three sisters and at first, I found it difficult to really feel involved with them. However, as the story progressed and they become more and more involved with the local resistance and the occupying forces, I became engrossed with each of the characters and their role in the story. Each of the three sisters, Helene, Elise and Florence have distinct characters and have very different feelings about the war and their part in it. This leads to friction between them but above all, they are family and their love for each other shines through all of their difficulties. The plot lines weave in and out and each of the sisters is challenged by events and has to face up to unforeseen difficulties. Wanting to find out how each part turns out makes the book really hard to put down. This is an engrossing book about how the war affected one village and one family in particular. I look forward to reading the sequel. Thank you to NetGalley and Harper Collins for allowing me to read this in return for an honest review.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Linda Hill

    War is raging as three sisters live through it in very different ways. From the very first moment Dinah Jefferies wastes no time in plunging her readers right into the heart of the action so that Daughters of War captivates them immediately. The Second World War may be a well known era for historical fiction but Dinah Jefferies imbues it with a freshness and excitement that is superb to read and I adored this book. The plot of Daughters of War simply zips along with the drama and ordinary daily li War is raging as three sisters live through it in very different ways. From the very first moment Dinah Jefferies wastes no time in plunging her readers right into the heart of the action so that Daughters of War captivates them immediately. The Second World War may be a well known era for historical fiction but Dinah Jefferies imbues it with a freshness and excitement that is superb to read and I adored this book. The plot of Daughters of War simply zips along with the drama and ordinary daily life under Nazi occupation perfectly balanced so that this is a really fast paced, impossible to put down, narrative. What Dinah Jefferies does so well is to show her readers the brutality of war and its effect on the individual in a realistic way that is never simply gratuitous, so that the impact is felt all the more keenly. With beautiful writing, especially through descriptions of nature, to counteract man’s inhumanity to man, this means that there’s depth and maturity that gives Daughters of War a wonderful richness. Reading the book is a very visual experience and I could picture it all as if I were watching a film because the detail is so evocative. The three daughters of the title Hélène, Elise and Florence are so credibly depicted as real, warm, vibrant people who transcend mere characters that now I’ve finished reading Daughters of War, I find them slipping into my thoughts as I wonder how they are after the events of the novel. Their very different personalities shine through the writing and Dinah Jefferies made me care about them completely. I desperately wanted a happy ending for them all, but you need to read the book to see if my wishes were granted. Similarly, the men in the book feel totally believable making for a very satisfying read. What I found particularly skilful in the writing was the way the girls’ mother Claudette influenced their lives even though she was physically absent from the story. Obviously war is a major theme in Daughters of War, and I learnt new aspects that I hadn’t known about before which added to my enjoyment of the book. However, it is relationships, family, bravery, trust and betrayal, loyalty, love in many forms, and sheer human resilience that combine into a wonderful, maturely observed and eloquently presented narrative. I can honestly say that I lost myself in the story. It felt weird to look up and find I wasn’t actually in France with Hélène, Elise and Florence et al. I think Daughters of War is the complete package and not to be missed. I thought it was excellent.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Janilyn Kocher

    Daughters of War demonstrates the ravages war has on families and individuals. Three sisters endured tremendous stress, strain, and heartache as their French village is assaulted by the Nazis. This novel really got to me. I felt Elise’s ache for Victor, Florence’s pain, and Helene’s sorrow about Jack. The ending left me feeling so bereft. Until I learned there is going to be a second and then third novel to finish out the sisters’ stories. I can’t wait! Thanks to HarperCollins and NetGalley for Daughters of War demonstrates the ravages war has on families and individuals. Three sisters endured tremendous stress, strain, and heartache as their French village is assaulted by the Nazis. This novel really got to me. I felt Elise’s ache for Victor, Florence’s pain, and Helene’s sorrow about Jack. The ending left me feeling so bereft. Until I learned there is going to be a second and then third novel to finish out the sisters’ stories. I can’t wait! Thanks to HarperCollins and NetGalley for the early read.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Audrey Haylins

    Blurb As a fan of Jeffries’ stunningly evocative Far Eastern colonial novels, I lapped up this new setting of occupied, rural France, which she presents just as convincingly. And, as always, I was quickly immersed in the lives of her protagonists; in this case, sisters Hélène, Elise and Florence. I must confess that I was expecting a plot arc along the lines of The Nightingale — also about sisters and the Resistance — but it is here that the comparison ends. And not in a bad way. Daughters of War Blurb As a fan of Jeffries’ stunningly evocative Far Eastern colonial novels, I lapped up this new setting of occupied, rural France, which she presents just as convincingly. And, as always, I was quickly immersed in the lives of her protagonists; in this case, sisters Hélène, Elise and Florence. I must confess that I was expecting a plot arc along the lines of The Nightingale — also about sisters and the Resistance — but it is here that the comparison ends. And not in a bad way. Daughters of War is just very different. Jeffries’ writing style is languid and atmospheric, the story only gradually unfolding. There is tension in the plot, but this ebbs and flows, rather than building to a frantic denouement. What the narrative lacks in tempo and suspense though, it more than makes up for in its sense of time and place and in its bold, brave heroines. The three sisters are hugely relatable and likeable, each her own person, each with her designated place in the trio. I love that Jeffries gives each one a separate voice in this tale, giving us access to their innermost thoughts and fears. And I love that despite their very different natures, they are always there for each other and united make a formidable unit. Jeffries has set the scene well for the next book in this trilogy, revealing family secrets that will change the course of the sisters’ lives after the war. I look forward to continuing the saga.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Andrea

    Another great story from Dinah Jefferies. Set in France during World War 2 we follow the lives of three different sisters and learn the secrets of their mother’s past. Reminiscent of the unsurpassable The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah and an engrossing page turner. Looking forward to the next instalment.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Jeanie

    NetGalley Member Review Cover Image: Daughters of War Daughters of War by Dinah Jefferies Pub Date: 16 Sep 2021 Review by jeanie m, Reviewer Last updated on 18 Jul 2021 My Recommendation With grateful thanks to Harper Collins netgalley and lastly Dinah Jefferies, for an outstandingly poignant tale. The story of 3 sisters is unfurled before us and what a journey and this is only the beginning, a tale of love loss fear intrepidation hatred and that's just for starters. The sisters having had a rather strange NetGalley Member Review Cover Image: Daughters of War Daughters of War by Dinah Jefferies Pub Date: 16 Sep 2021 Review by jeanie m, Reviewer Last updated on 18 Jul 2021 My Recommendation With grateful thanks to Harper Collins netgalley and lastly Dinah Jefferies, for an outstandingly poignant tale. The story of 3 sisters is unfurled before us and what a journey and this is only the beginning, a tale of love loss fear intrepidation hatred and that's just for starters. The sisters having had a rather strange upbringing find themselves in the Dordogne area during ww2 in there family summer home there father has passed away and there mother in England for reasons we found out parts during book 1. The 3 girls have to get on a do the best they can,I want to give nothing away but this book had me sitting on the edge of my seat willing them on its a real page Turner of a book and can't wait for the next instalment. Dinah Jefferies has excelled herself in this outstandingly beautiful book. Don't forget! Come back to your Review on the pub date, 16 Sep 2021, to post to these retailers.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Rachel

    Daughters of War by Dinah Jefferies is an excellent WWII-era historical fiction that has it all: mystery, suspense, history, drama, romance, and a stunning character cast. This is the first in an all-encompassing series that will truly be divine. This is a stunning novel. Taking place in France in WWII, we are introduced to a family with three vibrant, unique, passionate, and different sisters. Helene, Elise, and Florence are all fascinating in their own right. The push/pull relationships betwee Daughters of War by Dinah Jefferies is an excellent WWII-era historical fiction that has it all: mystery, suspense, history, drama, romance, and a stunning character cast. This is the first in an all-encompassing series that will truly be divine. This is a stunning novel. Taking place in France in WWII, we are introduced to a family with three vibrant, unique, passionate, and different sisters. Helene, Elise, and Florence are all fascinating in their own right. The push/pull relationships between each sibling is truly fascinating. Reading each of their respective stories, thoughts, and actions and also seeing it all play out amongst one another really carries the book. Then there are pivotal moments of sink or swim that really brings in the action. Seeing how each responds when they are called up to task takes it all to another level. I will save the rest of the plot for the reader so as not to spoil the wonderful journey. I look forward to reading more. 5/5 stars Thank you NG and Harper Collins UK/HarperFiction for this wonderful arc and in return I am submitting my unbiased and voluntary review and opinion. I am posting this review to my GR and Bookbub accounts immediately and will post it to my Amazon, Instagram, and B&N accounts upon publication.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    This is an atmospheric and fascinating story set in 1944 in the Dordogne valley, France. The Baudin sisters live in a little stone cottage during the German occupation. Their father is dead and their mother fled to England, leaving the sisters to fend for themselves while the Nazi’s come closer and the Allies ask for their help. The first book of a trilogy, it is rich in history and humanity and highlights the devastating effects of war on family and friendship. Each of the sisters and their sit This is an atmospheric and fascinating story set in 1944 in the Dordogne valley, France. The Baudin sisters live in a little stone cottage during the German occupation. Their father is dead and their mother fled to England, leaving the sisters to fend for themselves while the Nazi’s come closer and the Allies ask for their help. The first book of a trilogy, it is rich in history and humanity and highlights the devastating effects of war on family and friendship. Each of the sisters and their situations are complex and will leave your heart breaking at times. A highly remarkable and memorable read.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Shelagh Wadman

    Set in Nazi occupied France in the Spring of 1944 we follow the lives of three sisters Hélène, Élise and Florence Baudin. The sisters live in the village of Sainte-Cécile in the beautiful Périgord Noir.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Maddie

    A beautifully written story of three sisters living in a small French village during WW2 occupation by the Nazis. The plot consists of both happy and harrowing moments and is presented in such a way that it feels real. Each character was well-developed and a lot of them were very easy to get attached to. I will gladly read the next book in the trilogy once it's published in 2022. A beautifully written story of three sisters living in a small French village during WW2 occupation by the Nazis. The plot consists of both happy and harrowing moments and is presented in such a way that it feels real. Each character was well-developed and a lot of them were very easy to get attached to. I will gladly read the next book in the trilogy once it's published in 2022.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Lorraine Joad

    What a fantastic read this book was. The story follows three sisters Helene, Florence and Elise during the Second World War in France. The imagery was so vivid I felt I was living through the war with them. This book had me enthralled throughout and found myself thinking about the sisters even when I wasn’t reading! A sign of a truly great story. This is a real page turner with so many things happening you just need to find the outcomes and cheering the girls on. I’m so looking forward to the next b What a fantastic read this book was. The story follows three sisters Helene, Florence and Elise during the Second World War in France. The imagery was so vivid I felt I was living through the war with them. This book had me enthralled throughout and found myself thinking about the sisters even when I wasn’t reading! A sign of a truly great story. This is a real page turner with so many things happening you just need to find the outcomes and cheering the girls on. I’m so looking forward to the next book in the series. Thank you to Netgalley and the publishers for letting me read an advanced copy. It was an absolute pleasure.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Ilana

    There are normal times and extraordinary times - when ´extraordinary´ does not always mean ´good´. People may stay the same, only their character features are put on trial or polished by the extraordinary circumstances. The way they are though is there, expecting the right or wrong circumstances to manifest. Daughters of War, the latest book by the bestseller author Dinah Jefferies, is exactly about those kinds of circumstances and people who are influenced by it. Three sisters - Hélène, Florence There are normal times and extraordinary times - when ´extraordinary´ does not always mean ´good´. People may stay the same, only their character features are put on trial or polished by the extraordinary circumstances. The way they are though is there, expecting the right or wrong circumstances to manifest. Daughters of War, the latest book by the bestseller author Dinah Jefferies, is exactly about those kinds of circumstances and people who are influenced by it. Three sisters - Hélène, Florence and Elise - are living in Dordogne, France. It is 1944, and France is at often at the meeting point of war confrontations of all kinds. There is the Maquis, the Resistance movement, and the Brits as well as the Germans and the French Army itself who may interfer with the story during the timeline. The three sisters are under pressure to outlive their times, but not as passive actors, but as becoming - in their own particular ways - actors of history itself. The story enfolds slowly, giving time and space to the characters to develop. The darkness of war time is lightened by the transformations the characters - the women characters particularly - are undergoing. The dialogues are creating the proper ambiance which is completed by background storytelling exposing the hardships of the WWII and the Nazi-occupied France. The net of the story is knitted from one point of view to another, expanding the expectations and the possibilities. Each of the three sisters are very well profiled and I loved the diversity of the points of view they reflected. The fact that they are forced to take decisions outlined their character features and their personalities. Besides their dialogues and interactions, the internal thoughts are outlining the full character features of the characters. Personally, I would have expected more bold action on their behalf and more stubborness in acting on behalf of the good, but as in real life, I should learn being tolerant and patient with the reasons why some people are just different from me. Writing about those times is very sensitive and I had often the feeling that the author remained evasive and more focused on the characters than on the events as such on purpose. However, the writing and storytelling are irresistible and the reading experience is up to the expectations. I´ve read previous books by Jefferies before and the genuine empathic and approachable writing style is entincing for any kind of book lover. It is a guarantee of a story well told, no matter how difficult the circumstances are. Rating: 4.5 stars Disclaimer: Book offered by the publisher in exchange for an honest review

  29. 4 out of 5

    Julie

    4.5 Stars Master storyteller Dinah Jefferies dazzles her readers with Daughters of War, the first title in a fantastic new series historical fiction fans will not want to miss. Deep in the river valley of the Dordogne, three sisters living in an old stone cottage find themselves longing for the end of the war. This cruel and relentless conflict has managed to tarnish, destroy and change everyone’s lives – and even deep in the French countryside, people have experienced their fair share of anguish 4.5 Stars Master storyteller Dinah Jefferies dazzles her readers with Daughters of War, the first title in a fantastic new series historical fiction fans will not want to miss. Deep in the river valley of the Dordogne, three sisters living in an old stone cottage find themselves longing for the end of the war. This cruel and relentless conflict has managed to tarnish, destroy and change everyone’s lives – and even deep in the French countryside, people have experienced their fair share of anguish and despair. Hitler’s bombs show no signs of abating and eldest daughter Hélène is determined to do whatever it takes to keep her family safe – especially now when the threat of Nazi occupation looms closer and closer. Will Hélène manage to protect her family? Or is she fighting a losing battle? Firebrand Elise wants to do her bit for the war effort. She cannot sit idly by while her fellow countrymen risk life and limb to liberate France. Elise has decided to join the Resistance and to fight for the common good and nothing and nobody is going to stop her doing whatever it takes for her country. But does Elise know just what she will be letting herself into? Is she strong enough to do what will be required of her? Or will she bite off more than she can chew? Meanwhile dreamer Florence just wants to live in a world where France is free and where she can indulge her love of life without the ever present threat of bombs, heartbreak and death. Will Florence’s most cherished dream ever come true? Or is she destined for disappointment and regret? Yet, one dark night, the Allies knock on the door of their cottage and Hélène realises that she can no longer sit on the sidelines. The time has come for her to step up to the plate, but will secrets from the past end up threatening everything they hold dear to their heart? Dinah Jefferies’ Daughters of War is a sweeping, seductive and spellbinding wartime tale that takes readers on an emotional and enthralling journey that will keep them turning the pages late into the night. Daughters of War is a heart-wrenching, captivating and absorbing tale of secrets, loyalty, courage and love that is absolutely impossible to put down. Full of brilliantly drawn characters, evocative period descriptions, searing intensity and engrossing family drama, Daughters of War is a first class historical novel from the fabulous Dinah Jefferies.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Valerie Thirkettle-Kayser

    Three sisters - Hélène, Elise and Florence - live in a beautiful little house away from Sainte Cécile, a village in Dordogne, not too far from Sarlat. They moved when their father passed away and have remained there because of the Second World War. We are now in 1944 and the three sisters are longing for the end of the war. But the months prior to the liberation are very difficult in occupied France. The resistance is very active and many actions take place against the occupying forces in prepar Three sisters - Hélène, Elise and Florence - live in a beautiful little house away from Sainte Cécile, a village in Dordogne, not too far from Sarlat. They moved when their father passed away and have remained there because of the Second World War. We are now in 1944 and the three sisters are longing for the end of the war. But the months prior to the liberation are very difficult in occupied France. The resistance is very active and many actions take place against the occupying forces in preparation for the landing of the Allied forces. The three sisters all suffer through the events, loose loved ones, experience horrific times, throw themselves into their activities and find their own way to cope with these awful times. The book is full of interesting and strong characters: the three sisters of course, their friends Violette and Lucille, Hugo the doctor and his wife Marie, resistance fighters Jack, Victor and many others, Captain Meyer, Thomas and Anton. Through her research and empathy, Dinah Jefferies succeeded to recreate in her book the atmosphere in the village during these troubled times. Living in an occupied country was immensely complex and relationships between people that used to be friends or simply inhabitants of the same village also became complex. Not only the French were divided between those supporting Vichy, those fighting the occupant with any means they had and those just trying to get one with their lives. But also the German occupants were torn, many of them drawn to sympathise with the villagers, while some such as the division Das Reich perpetrated some of cruelest massacres during their retreat, such as the one in Tulle mentioned in the book. This complexity of situation, politics, relationships and emotions during these times in France is very seldom well addressed in British novels, but here it is done with deep sensitivity and empathy. In the background, I enjoyed the descriptions of the location in Dordogne, walking in the woods, sitting in the sun, listening to the birds. In spite of the tension of those days, the sisters's house always feels like a cosy and peaceful place, where sister Florence even manages to continue to maintain the culinary traditions, although with very different ingredients. I really enjoyed this book and I am glad this is a trilogy, as I cannot wait to read the rest of the story.

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