I’ve had the opportunity to read the upcoming MG novel, Keep Calm and Carry On, Children, by the talented Sharon Mayhew, and can honestly say she has done a remarkable job.
The book, about how British children during WWII persevered and overcame their situations, is tightly written and fascinating. I won’t go into spoiler mode, not with a book of this length, but I will say it kicks off with a tense opening as Joyce, the protagonist, is being rushed into their family’s shelter by her father as bombs are crashing down outside their home.
You can tell by the way this book was written that the care and concern applied to its many layers has a bit of backstory. One glance at the author’s bio, and you’ll see why. While Sharon Mayhew was born in England and immigrated to the United States when she was eight, this book is inspired by her grandfather’s life. Her grandfather, who at the time of the book’s forthcoming release, will be ninety-eight-years old, grew up during World War II. Interesting, yes, but not particularly book worthy. Not until we learn that his parents took in two evacuees from London during that war…
Now, I’m hooked! Besides, any book that opens with a father asking his daughter if she has her gas mask, is instantly intriguing. When the stakes are this high, it’s the ending that matters most. We know how WWII ended, but how will Joyce’s story end? My lips are sealed, but Keep Calm and Carry On, Children releases September 9th, 2019. Pre-orders have started, so get your copy now at Amazon, Barnes & Nobles, or BlackRoseWriting.com and find out for yourself.
Eleven-year-old Joyce and her little sister hide in their bomb shelter during the German Blitz on London, during World War II. After nights of bombing, it’s decided that they’ll join the over 800,000 children who’ve already been evacuated during Operation Pied Piper. They board a train not knowing where they’re going or who will take them in.
The long, crowded train ride is less than pleasant. Thankfully they make two allies, Sam and Molly. Upon arriving in Leek, the evacuees are herded off the train and paraded down the street like sheep. Joyce and her sister are terrified they won’t be chosen.
Eventually, a family welcomes them. As they adjust to all the changes, they find the people of Leek aren’t so accepting to all the evacuees. Sam’s host is dark and abusive. As the girls help plan his escape, they discover this sleepy little community holds a dark secret…
Sharon Mayhew, born in England, immigrated to The United States when she was eight. She spent seventeen years teaching third and fourth graders to read and write. KEEP CALM AND CARRY ON, CHILDREN is inspired by her ninety-eight-year-old grandfather's life. During World War II his parents took in two children from London during Operation Pied Piper. Sharon resides with her family in Missouri.