I found this book after I realized that I needed to be looking for more Greek myth retellings and books with the Greek gods in them because I LOVE them.
Friends, this is one of the sweetest romance novels I’ve ever read. Berry does such a magical job of capturing the sweet ache of being young and falling in love–especially during World War I. (I know I didn’t live then so I don’t know what it’s like either, but I can imagine).
This book follows four young people whose lives cross during the war. Two of them are soldiers from different parts of the world. James meets Hazel a week before he’s to ship off to war. It was the best love at first sight I’ve read since The Fault in Our Stars. James and Hazel are tender-hearted and nervous which makes their interactions so beautiful and I gobbled them up.
Aubrey is part of the band in one of the African American infantries in the war. He wants to create music, be treated equally, and get the beautiful Colette to fall in love with him. He is truly a king of jazz and it made me actually like jazz! Colette is completely tragic yet such a strong girl. We don’t get to read as much from her perspective, but I fell in love with her as a character just as much as the other characters.
These characters are so brave, beautiful, and utterly tragic as they all go through horrors and learn to live with death and pain. I feel like I’m tearing up right now just writing about their stories.
I don’t think this could have been told without the gods’ narration because they all understand love, war, and death on a level that truly appreciates the lives these four teens are living. I also loved getting to see Aphrodite and Hephaestus in a different light.
This is a beautiful book. This is a book about falling in love and chasing after it. It’s about fear and sadness. It’s about death. It’s about being brave. It’s about so much and one definitely going to be one of my favorite love stories of all time. This is a sad book, but it’s also a hopeful book. So have tissues on hand for all the sad and happy tears to come.