Thursday, April 20, 2017

Defiance by A.L Sowards {Blog Tour Review + Giveaway}

Defiance (A World War II Story) by A.L. Sowards
Paperback, 310 pages
Published April 2017 by Covenant Communications

Eight years after immigrating to the United States, German-born Lukas Ley embodies the American dream: successful athlete, gorgeous girlfriend, loving family. But beneath the surface, eighteen-year-old Lukas is driven by ambition, resolved to avenge the murder of his father at the hands of the Nazi regime. Unfortunately, a failed physical throws his plans for flight school off course. Unlike his war-hero older brother, Lukas’s purpose is unclear. He can’t fly, and in the eyes of the military, he’s good for only one thing—the front lines.

From the foxholes of war-ravaged Luxembourg to the devastation of an enormous German offensive, Lukas’s journey is fraught with peril. But when he’s taken as a prisoner of war, he realizes life is about to get much worse. In the enemy camp, Lukas is viewed as a German fighting for the wrong side. Ripped from the innocence of an idealistic youth, he becomes a man beaten by the horrors of war. Now his only hope of survival is to hold tightly to his faith in God and his love of family and home. But even if he manages to make it out alive, can he ever be whole again?

Sometimes survival is the ultimate act of Defiance.


My Review: 5 Stars

I love that last line of the blurb--"Sometimes survival is the ultimate act of defiance." Surviving when all odds are against you seems impossible. I have to admit--I'm kind of emotionally exhausted after reading this book. It's not an easy read, as,'s about war. But the writing is real, raw, and just plain amazing. Sowards has an uncanny ability to write about this time in history in a way that engages the reader, tells things how they probably were, and really makes a reader think.

Lukas was born in Germany, but moved to America when he was young and now he's eager to fight in the war against the country who killed his father. Lukas's enthusiasm is endearing, as is his budding romance with his forbidden neighbor, Bella. War isn't all glory like Lukas assumes and it completely tears him down and molds him into someone he doesn't even recognize.

Through all of these hard, hard times, there are threads of hope glinting in the distance. I wouldn't wish anyone to go through war to learn this life lessons that Lukas experiences, but he encountered so much growth through them. I bet he never took the conveniences of life for granted again. My grandpa fought in WWII and never liked to talk about it. It made me wonder just how much he, and countless others, went through. I feel a little more humbled by reading this.

Content: mild language; moderate+ violence; very, very mild religious elements; very mild romance.

*I received a copy through the publisher. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.*

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About the Author:

A.L. SowardsI was born in Georgia but consider Moses Lake, Washington my hometown. I came to Utah to attend school (BYU) and ended up staying. Books have always been an important part of my life. I remember writing self-illustrated storybooks at my grandparent's house when I was in elementary school (none of those made it to publication for many good reasons) and attending my first writer's conference when I was in third grade.

Now I'm a busy mom with young chidren. I still love to read and I also love to write. I'm usually reading a couple books at once and working on multiple writing projects too. Other than that, my life is pretty ordinary. I'm grateful for that. I'll let the characters in my books have all the adventures.



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