In 1944, a German Jewish refugee is sent to Wales to interview Rudolf Hess; in Snowdonia, a seventeen-year-old girl, the daughter of a fiercely nationalistic shepherd, dreams of the bright lights of an English city; and in a nearby POW camp, a German soldier struggles to reconcile his surrender with his sense of honour.
As their lives intersect, all three will come to question where they belong and where their loyalties lie. Peter Ho Davies's thought-provoking and profoundly moving first novel traces a perilous wartime romance as it explores the bonds of love and duty that hold us to family, country, and ultimately our fellow man.
Vividly rooted in history and landscape, THE WELSH GIRL reminds us anew of the pervasive presence of the past, and the startling intimacy of the foreign.
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 352 pages
- Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton General Division
- Publication Date: 27/12/2007
- Category: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)
- ISBN: 9780340938270
Showing 1 - 2 of 2 reviews.
Review by jeniwren
I found this a little slow to start but the latter sections of the novel improved and made for an enjoyable read. It is an interesting story about a group of characters living through war in a small Welsh community with themes explored about identity and patriotism. Esther's story was no doubt a common one during times of war for women left at home and the author has created a likeable and engaging character. Overall a book I would recommend and an impressive debut.
Review by samsheep
I thought this was just wonderful - beautifully written, small and yet huge. I really liked all the characters and found the end very moving in its rather understated way. The only criticism is that it didn't quite convey the Welshness of (N) Wales enough for me but that wasn't really essential to the story.