That Burning Summer

That Burning Summer - Lydia Syson

I liked the mysterious elements of this novel that the author cuts through the story. Peggy and Ernst are now living with their aunt and uncle on their farm as the army has taken over their house. Their mum has told them that their father has left to fight in the war. Ernst is obsessed with following the government rules, a mini soldier he has now become, following the guidelines that are outlined on the leaflets that were disturbed to the residents. Every time you turn around, Ernst is quoting a rule, a statute, watching for violators and trying to keep his community in check. It’s his own sister that becomes a criminal right beneath his eyes, when she befriends a Polish pilot whose plane has gone down in the nearby vast marsh area. Peggy hides Henryk in the nearby derelict church where she can care for him. They know they are from opposite sides of the war but Peggy likes having Henryk to herself and things have now changed for Henryk’s too. His future plans as a pilot in the war are not what they originally were.   The residents are searching for a plane, they heard an aircraft go down, and the question is how long can Peggy keep Henryk a secret?


I thought the first bit of the novel was a tad slow and wordy. There wasn’t much going on and I was starting to lose interest. Later as more characters got introduced and the story took shape, the novel took off and I had to know more. There was romance in air with Peggy and Henryk and I wondered how their romance was going to continue and how Henryk was ever going to make it out of the church.   With the townsfolk looking for a downed plane, Peggy trying to conceal Henryk with the walls of the chapel and Ernst certain on following the rules stated on the leaflets, Henryk was sure to be found. Other stories were shared as the characters gathered together, the downed plane with the mysterious pilot was just one the mysteries that came to light. Some of these stories revealing surprises that I hadn’t expected and neither had the characters.


I received this novel from NetGalley and Sky Horse Publishing in exchange for an honest review.