“The books that the world calls immoral are books that show the world its own shame.”
This book was totally depressing, and really didn't do it for me. From the blurb, I thought it would have a bit more to do with the main characters (Peter and Katharina) relationship. But mostly, it was about the war. War life sucks, just all around. It sucks on the front, and it sucks back at home. This book was even more depressing than I was prepared for. Katharina's home life is oppressive, and she seems to be a bit of a stick-in-the-mud anyway. Peter has a bit more spunk to him, but the eastern front is not a good place to be.
My main peeve with this book was the dialog. Nobody had anything to say to each other more than a few words at a time. I think the average sentence length was 4 words or something (see picture for example). Who talks like this? Plus, there was hardly ever any indication of who was saying what. It's OK if there are just a few lines of exchange, but after a full page of short, 4 word answers back and forth, it was confusing who was saying what. And really, after a while, I didn't care who was saying it anyway.
The end of the book was no help. Depressing as hell, with an 8 year jump in time. There wasn't much of a resolution to anything, just sort of fading to black. I know not everyone gets a happy, Hollywood ending, and sometimes life doesn't tie up all the loose ends the way you want, but some sort of resolution would be nice. If you're looking for a war time love story, or a war time story full stop, there are others I'd recommend first.
I received a copy of this book through Goodreads First Reads in exchange for an honest review.