Book & Film Pairings, edition 1

Welcome to a new series on the blog pairing favorite stories in book and film format! I will be sharing a recommendation for a book and a movie (or series!), along with notes comparing the two and reasons you should read or watch each one.  We’re starting off with one of my favorite genres, historical dramas and the subject of WWII.

WWII Dramas: Dunkirk (2017) and The Maggie Bright by Tracy Groot

dunkirk movie poster
source: imdb.com

Dunkirk is the Christopher Nolan-directed war epic, released in theaters in 2017. It tells the true-life story of the evacuation at Dunkirk beach in France during the onslaught of the Germans’ advance in 1940. The three perspectives of the story (land, sea, and air) are twisted together and quite cleverly layered. It’s the kind of movie you really have to pay attention to – especially for the timeline of everything! The presentation of each perspective has a rawness and urgency, paired with a heart-pounding score and knowledge that it’s based on real life events to make the viewer anxious and intrigued at once.

The Maggie Bright is a novel that I enjoyed IMMENSELY. Tracy Groot has a storytelling ability that is impressive. This story, set before and during the events of Dunkirk, is like the film in some ways with its multiple perspectives and winding story that intertwines with the events of Dunkirk in a most surprising way. A book, of course, offers more emotional depth and immersive feelings, and that is the case with the events the reader is caught up in with Maggie Bright.

Read my full review of The Maggie Bright here!

If you have read or watched either of these, I would love to hear your thoughts! Do you have other novels or movies to recommend that feature WWII drama or the rescue at Dunkirk?

Review: “Maggie Bright” by Tracy Groot Blog Tour

After my overwhelming love of The Sentinels of Andersonville by Tracy Groot, I was very excited to get my hands on her latest book, Maggie Bright. While it was not as epic as Sentinels (I don’t think any book can top that in its genre!), it was very good!

maggie brightBook Summary: “England, 1940.” Clare Childs knew life would change when she unexpectedly inherited the “Maggie Bright”–a noble fifty-two-foot yacht. In fact, she’s counting on it. But the boat harbors secrets. When a stranger arrives, searching for documents hidden onboard, Clare is pulled into a Scotland Yard investigation that could shed light on Hitler’s darkest schemes and prompt America to action.Across the Channel, Hitler’s “Blitzkrieg” has the entire British army in retreat with little hope for rescue at the shallow beaches of Dunkirk. With time running out, Churchill recruits civilian watercraft to help. Hitler is attacking from land, air, and sea, and any boat that goes might not return. Yet Clare knows “Maggie Bright” must answer the call–piloted by an American who has refused to join the war effort until now and a detective with a very personal motive for exposing the truth.The fate of the war hinges on this rescue. While two men join the desperate fight, a nation prays for a miracle.

Tracy Groot skillfully writes vivid characters. From the first few pages of the book and glimpses of the characters, their unique personalities are established. Along with Clare, the story features American Murray Vance and Detective Inspector William Percy from Scotland Yard in England. While their story unfolds, a contrasting storyline of Private Jamie Elliot under siege, making his way to Dunkirk, France, immerses the reader in the action on the continent. The banter between the characters, particularly that of Clare and Detective William, was a fun and bright spot in the midst of drama.

The Maggie Bright brings these characters together – sometimes with surprising revelations – and unites them with a courageous purpose. I enjoyed seeing how the different characters realized they could contribute to the war efforts and make sacrifices, no matter their age or abilities.

Tracy confronted a unique subject within this story. And, featured the rescue at Dunkirk – an aspect of WWII I was previously unaware of.  Within this story, the importance of belief in bolstering courage and faith in the power of prayer were highlighted and central to the story. I look forward to whatever is next from Tracy – I will be reading it!

One thing I love about reading historical fiction is that, while being entertaining, it often sheds light on interesting historical events or persons. Do you have any favorite examples of books like this? Have you heard of the rescue at Dunkirk?

Thank you to Tyndale House Publishers for a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.