Book Review: With Every Letter


Lt. Mellie Blake is a nurse serving in the 802nd Medical Squadron, Air Evacuation, Transport. As part of a morale building program, she reluctantly enters into an anonymous correspondence with Lt. Tom MacGilliver, an officer in the 908th Engineer Aviation Battalion in North Africa. As their letters crisscross the Atlantic, Tom and Mellie develop a unique friendship despite not knowing the other’s true identity. When both are transferred to Algeria, the two are poised to meet face to face for the first time.


Will they overcome their fears and reveal who they are, or will their future be held hostage to their past? And can they learn to trust God and embrace the gift of love he offers them? Combining excellent research and attention to detail with a flair for romance, Sarah Sundin brings to life the perilous challenges of WWII aviation, nursing, and true love.


My Review:
I can always count on a Sarah Sundin novel to truly take me away into another time and place. I worried when the book arrived (full disclosure – I received a copy of the book in exchange for my honest opinion…) I was worried I wouldn’t have a moment to even dive into it. I haven’t been able to finish a stack of books I need to review.


But I opened the book and read the first chapter. Then another. And another.


In classic Sundin fashion, this story sucks you in from the beginning with in-depth research, unique characters and aspects of World War II you don’t see in every other tired historical fiction. You’ll walk away from this book a bit smarter, I guarantee.


At least, you’ll know what bark is used as a substitute for aspirin.


Beyond the historically-accurate details and catchy dialogue, this story addresses serious issues of family legacies that can trap us and prejudices that can destroy us. There are so many times I related to the main character and rooted for her. There were a few times I wished Sundin could have dug a little deeper and shared more of the story (i.e. the main character and her father) but I say that knowing I would have been just as engaged if the book were 120,000 words or more. (Nudge, nudge, Sarah. Maybe create a companion e-novella?)


I look forward to more in the Wings of the Nightingale series and highly recommend this book to history lovers and literary lovers alike.


Besides, you know you’re wondering about the bark… right? Pick up With Every Letter (Amazon link) the instant it comes out {August 15th}. ( link)


Also, follow Sarah Sundin on Twitter and Facebook to learn more about her books and the history behind them. 

More about Nicole

Community Champion at Buffer ~ writer ~ reader ~ urban homesteader ~ former rodeo queen ~ @nmillerbooks

  • I’m curious about more than just the bark! Can’t wait to read this, Nicole! Thanks so much for the review. It looks great. 🙂

  • Thank you so much for the wonderful review, Nicole! I’m so glad you enjoyed Tom & Mellie’s story. Big whopping sigh of relief. And thanks for posting the very first blog review – again 🙂

    Oh, to have 120,000 words to play with…my dream 🙂 I also wish I had more space to explore backstory, especially with this book!

  • As for the bark…this pharmacist says, “Don’t try this at home.” 🙂

  • Rest assured, Dr. Sundin – I’m in no hurry to nibble on tree bark… 🙂

  • I’m also looking forward to With Every Letter coming out. It sounds like “You’ve Got Mail” meets North Africa, war, and aviation when few women could fly, even as nurses.

  • That’s a great way to describe it, Anne!

  • Anne – where were you when I was trying to write my pitch? :)Love that description!

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