Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Book Review - Guernica by Dave Boling

I seem to be on an historical fiction kick lately. Guernica by Dave Boling is just one of the books I've read lately about real life events.

"In 1935, Miguel Navarro finds himself in conflict with the Spanish Civil Guard, and flees the Basque fishing village of Lekeitio to make a new start in Guernica, the center of Basque culture and tradition. In the midst of this isolated bastion of democratic values, Miguel finds more than a new life—he finds someone to live for. Miren Ansotegui is a charismatic and graceful dancer who has her pick of the bachelors in Guernica, but focuses only on the charming and mysterious Miguel. The two discover a love that war and tragedy can not destroy.

History and fiction merge seamlessly in this beautiful novel about the resilience of family, love, and tradition in the face of hardship. The bombing of Guernica was a devastating experiment in total warfare by the German Luftwaffe in the run-up to World War II. For the Basques, it was an attack on the soul of their ancient nation; for the world, it was an unprecedented crime against humanity."

If you're an art buff, you have probably seen Pablo Picasso's painting, Guernica. I am almost ashamed to say that I was unaware of the painting or the town.

I loved this book, because it made what happened at Guernica real to me. I cared about the characters and I cried when I read the pages describing the bombing. Dave's writing is breathtakingly vivid. I could see the destruction. I could also feel the emotions of the people living through an unexpected attack on their lives. If you have the opportunity to read this book, take it, it'll be worth it!

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