Thursday, September 18, 2014

GI Brides: The Wartime Girls Who Crossed the Atlantic for Love by Duncan Barrett and Nuala Calvi

 The “friendly invasion” of Britain by over a million American G.I.s bewitched a generation of young women deprived of male company during the Second World War. With their exotic accents, smart uniforms, and aura of Hollywood glamour, the G.I.s easily conquered their hearts, leaving British boys fighting abroad green with envy. But for girls like Sylvia, Margaret, Gwendolyn, and even the skeptical Rae, American soldiers offered something even more tantalizing than chocolate, chewing gum, and nylon stockings: an escape route from Blitz-ravaged Britain, an opportunity for a new life in affluent, modern America.

Through the stories of these four women, G.I. Brides illuminates the experiences of war brides who found themselves in a foreign culture thousands of miles away from family and friends, with men they hardly knew. Some struggled with the isolation of life in rural America, or found their soldier less than heroic in civilian life. But most persevered, determined to turn their wartime romance into a lifelong love affair, and prove to those back home that a Hollywood ending of their own was possible.

My Thoughts…

World War II, woman’s side of the story, and romance…what more can I ask for?   Absolutely nothing!  This is the perfect book for me.    The setting is my all time favorite.   I love hearing about the war time struggles and happenings from the woman’s point of view.   Romance, my favorite to read.   

GI Brides was a little different that the normal WW II books I have read.   This was told from woman from across the ocean.    It is told by women who fell in love with US Military Men.    Each woman had a different story to share.   Starting with how they met their men, how they fell in love, and what they found when they finally made it to the US as new brides from a foreign country.  

Each woman shared the story of language issues, some of which made me giggle, not so friendly US families, babies, alcohol abuse, gamble issues, and sickness.   Even with all these struggles the women in this story were able to be strong and do what needed to be done to make happy and successful lives.     I enjoyed that this was not just a happy every after story.  It was a real story about real women who lived what some could call a tough life and came out on top.

For everyone who loves the WW II era this is the book for you.   It is definitely one of my top books from this era.   I highly recommend it.

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  1. My Grandma was living and working in Coventry, England when she met my Grandpa, an American GI recovering from injuries received in France. I love reading stories like theirs!

    Thanks for being a part of the tour!

  2. I'm so glad you loved it! Thanks for being on the tour!