Author: Kate Thompson
Published by: Forever on Feb. 21, 2023
Genres: Historical Fiction
Format: ARC, Paperback
Source: HBG Canada
Book Rating: 10/10
London, 1944: Clara Button is no ordinary librarian. While war ravages the city above her, Clara has risked everything she holds dear to turn the Bethnal Green tube station into the country’s only underground library. Down here, a secret community thrives with thousands of bunk beds, a nursery, a café, and a theater—offering shelter, solace, and escape from the bombs that fall upon their city.
Along with her glamorous best friend and assistant Ruby Munroe, Clara ensures the library is the beating heart of life underground. But as the war drags on, the women’s determination to remain strong in the face of adversity is tested to the limits when it may come at the price of keeping those closest to them alive.
Captivating, rich, and inspirational!
The Little Wartime Library is a heartwarming, tragic, uplifting tale set in England during 1944 that takes you into the lives of Clara Button, a young, plucky librarian with a kind heart, and Ruby Munroe, a loyal friend and hardworking assistant, who after both suffering unimaginable personal loss work tirelessly to give the people and children of East London a sanctuary and source of escapism by moving the library destroyed by bombs at the start of the Blitz seventy feet underground into the haven and community created on the unused tracks of the Bethnal Green tube station.
The prose is evocative and rich. The characters are genuine, determined, and courageous. And the plot, including all the subplots, unravel and intertwine seamlessly into an alluring tale of life, loss, love, family, devastation, hardship, hope, friendship, adversity, self-discovery, wartime living, survival, and ultimately the power of books.
The Little Wartime Library is an insightful, poignant, engrossing read by Thompson that does a wonderful job of interweaving historical facts and compelling fiction into an absorbing, heart-tugging tale that is exceptionally atmospheric, beautifully entertaining and a true love letter to libraries and librarians everywhere.
This novel is available now.
Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.
Thank you to HBG Canada & Forever for gifting me a copy in exchange for an honest review.