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We Must Be Brave

Length: 16 hrs and 7 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (57 ratings)

Regular price: $35.00

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Publisher's Summary

Spanning the sweep of the 20th century, We Must Be Brave explores the fierce love we feel for our children and the power of that love to endure. Beyond distance, beyond time, beyond life itself.

"This stirring debut will work its way indelibly into your heart." (Georgia Hunter, author of We Were the Lucky Ones)

One woman. One little girl. The war that changed everything.

December 1940. In the disorderly evacuation of Southampton, England, newly married Ellen Parr finds a small child asleep on the backseat of an empty bus. No one knows who little Pamela is.

Ellen professed not to want children with her older husband, and when she takes Pamela into her home and rapidly into her heart, she discovers this is true: Ellen doesn't want children. She wants only Pamela. Three golden years pass as the Second World War rages on. Then one day, Pamela is taken away, screaming. Ellen is no stranger to sorrow, but when she returns to the quiet village life she's long lived, she finds herself asking: In a world changed by war, is it fair to wish for an unchanged heart?

In the spirit of We Were the Lucky Ones and The Nightingale, here is a novel about courage and kindness, hardship and friendship, and the astonishing power of love.

©2019 Frances Liardet (P)2019 Penguin Audio

Critic Reviews

"Be prepared to surrender - to Liardet's gorgeous prose, her haunting storyline, and the question that will lodge in your heart long after you’ve finished: What would I have done? For anyone who has ever loved a child, this stirring debut will work its way indelibly into the folds of your memory, and of your heart.” (Georgia Hunter, New York Times best-selling author of We Were the Lucky Ones)

“Dazzling... As a testament to parental love and its relationship to the heartbreaking, healing, almost ungraspable passage of time, We Must Be Brave is a great success: richly observed, lovingly drawn, and determinedly clear-eyed to the last.” (Guardian, UK)

“Vividly portrayed.... Liardet reminds us that mother-daughter love can arise from thrown-together hearts during the cruelest rubble of war. Through every scene, we see the tattered socks, the doll faces, the honey-smells of baby skin, but mostly we feel the strength and endurance of heart-crushing love. The war and weather-etched faces and life-long relationships of the villagers show us that real family has little to do with worn down definitions. This is a powerful story that proves how love itself requires courage.” (Delia Owens, New York Times best-selling author of Where the Crawdads Sing

“Moving.... Readers will be captivated by Ellen’s story, which is bolstered by a swift plot and characters who realistically and memorably grow.” (Publishers Weekly)

What members say

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great Book

story was great could listen to more.Narration was wonderful to listen too. Will look for more from the author.l

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Gretchen
  • Salinas, CA, United States
  • 03-03-19

Mostly Wonderful

The first 2/3 of the book was rich and detailed, character driven and beautifully narrated, but suddenly the story leapt over huge chunks of time & the details became vague & sparse. I felt frustrated with both the main characters towards the end and neither narrator sounded natural doing the voices for their aged character.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Good Content w/ eventual emotional attachment .

This was a good book for the most part. It was very, very slow and took a while to gain a real appreciation for the content. In the end you do form an emotional attachement to the 2 main characters and their journey.