Tuesday, April 6, 2010

A DISTANT MELODY, by Sarah Sundin

Walter Novak and Allie Miller meet at a friend's wedding. On the surface, they have little in common. But the exigencies of World War II tend to break down normal barriers. Walt is a B-17 pilot about to be shipped out to England, while Allie is a timid, sheltered heiress-to-be.
Normally, Walt is tongue-tied around available women, but they meet on a train and he falsely assumes her to be married and a mother of small children, so he feels safe in talking to her. When he finds out later that she's single he's able to continue his unaccustomed gregariousness, to the point where he draws her out of her shell. The two of them begin a friendship, which forms the basis of this Christian romance.
Walt goes off to England, and Allie returns to her home in Riverside, where she's expected to marry a man who is her parent's choice for her.
The theme that develops through A Distant Melody is the seriousness of even a "harmless" white lie. Through mutual deceptions and silences when words would have been truthful, Allie and Walt's relationship bounces as much as a B-17 in a hard landing.
The wartime air battle scenes are masterfully done. In fact, for me they were the highlight of the novel. The crewmen of Walt’s bomber emerge as real people that the reader comes to care about. These portions of A Distant Melody contain many details realistic to the time period (1942–43) in which the story is set. Sundin has done a remarkable job of researching both the scenes in Europe as well as details of life in wartime California.
There have been so many novels set in WWII that I wasn't sure I'd want to read another one, but A Distant Melody offers a fresh look at an often-told conflict. It was a pleasure to read. I look forward to the next book in the series so I can find out what happens to the other Novak brothers, minor characters in this story. I recommend this book.


  1. I loved this book!!! It was so well written and captivating!

  2. Hi Ann, just found you.....love your blog.
    So anxious to read your book The Promise of Morning.

  3. I LOVE this book. (And I really like your website template too!)

    My blog home has moved!! Please update your link to me if you have one, if not come see me!!