Tag Archive | facial injuries

“Broken Faces” by Deborah Carr

“Broken Faces” by Deborah Carr tells the story of Lady Alexandra Baldwyn “Lexi”, her brother Charles, his friend Freddie Chevalier, with whom Lexi is in love, and Charles’ fiancée, Meri.  1914 England was a difficult time.  Charles and Meri were engaged to be married, but that didn’t stop Charles from one last fling with his mistress…where Meri found them together.  Meri is heartbroken and breaks the engagement.

The war in France was raging and young men were joining up to fight the Huns.  Freddie goes home to Jersey where he tends the farm with his father until he decides that he needs to help in the fight.  Lexi just wants to contribute and volunteers, driving ambulances and delivering supplies in England.  Meri joins the V.A.D. and is nursing in a field hospital in France.  Charles is fighting in the trenches and is soon joined by Freddie.  Freddie is wounded in the face and is evacuated to the field hospital where Meri is a nurse.  Eventually Freddie ends up in a Facial Reconstruction Hospital in Amiens where everything possible is done to repair the damage done to his face.

I could just re-write the story in my review, because there are so many facets of this novel.  However, I must say that reading this novel gave a true glimpse of what had to be the most horrible type of warfare.  Human beings maimed and killed over a swath of land known as “no man’s land”, constant barrage of munitions, mud, filth, deprivation.  This book follows these four young people as they come to grips with their lives during and after the war.  With carnage and damage surrounding them, can they even think of going on with new lives.

I enjoyed the book from the historical viewpoint, but it was hard reading of the terrible injuries and the attempts of the men and women to overcome them.

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“At the Edge of Summer” by Jessica Brockmole

“At the Edge of Summer” by Jessica Brockmole is a novel set in 1911 France.  It is the story of a fifteen year old girl, Clare Ross, a Scottish lass, who has been left alone since her mother left and her father died.  A friend of her mother’s Madame Crepet has brought her to live with her family in the French countryside.  Luc is the son of this family and is studying in Paris.  He comes home on some weekends to try to make Clare not feel so lonely.  Their friendship blossoms until Clare’s grandfather comes to take her with him on his academic travels to exotic lands.  Clare and Luc keep in touch by letter until the Great War starts.  Clare thinks he has forgotten her, but his letters to her have been lost as have hers to him.

Clare becomes an artist and starts working with a studio that makes facial prostheses for soldiers who have been injured in the war.  One day, a young soldier comes to the studio for a consultation.  Clare works with him and feels that she must know him.  It is Luc, but his appearance has changed so drastically that she does not recognize him until later.  What follows is a story of love and forgiveness.

I read another book by Ms. Brockmole, “Letters from Skye”.  Her writing style seems to include letters that tell the story of the book.  I found that in her writing, the characters are let much of themselves come forth in their letters.  I did not see this same interaction between them when they met face to face.  This way of telling her story is interesting because the reader feels that he is actually seeing what the letter writer is feeling.

I was sent a print copy of this book by NightOwlReviews.com in return for my honest review.