During World War II, Coventry, England was bombed several times by the German Luftwaffe. The most devastating of these attacks occurred on 14 November 1940. On that evening, 515 German bombers carried out a coordinated attack, code-named Operation Mondscheinsonate (Moonlight Sonata). After the bombing, Coventry lay in ruins.
It is during this attack that the novel, The Secret Orphan, by Glynis Peters, begins. Bombs are dropping, and the world of six-year-old Rose Sherbourne comes crashing down. Out the rubble, Rose emerges, orphaned. She is taken out of the city and placed in the care of a family friend, Elenor Cardew, a single-woman running a farm in Cornwall.
Now a mother, Elenor must dedicate herself to Rose, giving her all the love she needs. Despite the occasional bombing nearby and the constant war rations, Elenor and Rose are happy in Cornwall. That is until Elenor discovers a dark secret about her ward’s past. Desperate to keep that secret, Eleanor enlists the aid of a person she trusts completely, Jackson St John, a Canadian pilot. Together, they fight the enemies within to keep the child they both love safe.
From the moment I picked up The Secret Orphan, I did not want to put it down again. The story, with all of its intrigue and plot twists, compelled me to keep reading. I especially enjoyed Eleanor’s journey from downtrodden sister, to beloved niece, to devoted mother, to cherished wife. I did not want the last page to be the end; I wanted to know more about the characters’ lives after the war. A must-read for anyone who loves historical fiction (especially World War II fiction) or romance, The Secret Orphan will keep you entertained while keeping you guessing.