on April 29, 2015 :
I love this series inspired by real heroine/hero spies during WWII against the Nazi Regime.
Hope is the Virtues code-name for the brilliantly talented and renowned vocal star, Virginia Benoit, who works uncover with other women named after Virtues all spying as a unit in Europe. Hobnobbing with the upper echelon of the Nazi Party as a star who is highly underestimated in covert affairs, Hope is passing song sheets covered in code with invisible ink at church drop sites. Romance comes in abruptly when she mets another very attractive spy in her hotel room in the dead of night in Paris. I can't wait to see what comes of their budding relationship.
Because they are a team, Homeland's Hope includes picking up where Temperance's Trail left off and I will only say, you want to know what happens to both Temperance and Hope. Non-spoiler: bombs are involved. I am so looking forward to Charity's Code.
I received a complimentary book from The Book Club Network at bookfun.org in exchange for my honest review.
(reviewed 36 days after purchase)
on April 25, 2015 :
How would you like to be a spy that would go out to dinner with a high-ranking military officer of enemy forces and take information back to the military of your own country or allied country? Even if it places your own life in danger? Could you use your talents to entertain the troops of the enemy and rely on the Lord’s direction and protection?
That is exactly what Virginia Benoit, code named Hope, did in Homeland’s Hope, the second novella in the ‘Virtues and Valor’ series by Hallee Bridgeman. This series is set in WWII Europe, and the heroines are based on real women who served in a special and unique women’s group. Virginia is very obviously not of Aryan descent, having both black and Creole blood. Because of that, even with her tremendous singing gift, she is not always welcome in her US birthplace, and spent many years in France with her first husband, even becoming a French citizen. Purposely spending time as an entertainer where there were high-ranking members of the Nazi war machine seemed like suicide, but “Hope” has chosen this path for a higher purpose – freedom for France and the US, and freedom from Nazi control.
Homeland’s Hope picks up where Temperance’s Trial breaks; throughout the series, the ‘Virtues’ will see each other and help each other in their uniquely separate, yet related, assignments. Each of the ladies is given a code name based on Virtues. We will see how each of these ladies work, on their own or together to achieve the goal of their team and their country. The plot is intense – while Temperance’s Trial showed the ‘Virtues’ as they began to train together and the stress began to build, Homeland’s Hope really began to show “where the rubber meets the road” of their assignment. It was almost painful when this story of the series ended.
Hope is an amazing woman; her strength of character is demonstrated throughout the events of her life, including making France her home after marrying her husband, and choosing to risk her life for the cause. It is impressive that Hallee Bridgeman based each of the seven ‘Virtues’ on real women who served in WWIi; reading the background on the woman who Hope’s character is based on was enlightening. Only the Lord could give this kind of courage to His people, and only He could bless and equip them. I highly recommend Homeland’s Hope’ to all who enjoy WWII fiction; the author’s eye for detail, historical accuracy, and writing talent make this an exciting read! This would also be appropriate, I think, for older teens; the ‘Virtues’ are definitely good role models for today’s young women!
With a grateful heart, I received a copy of this book through the “For Readers Only” group at The Book Club Network, in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own, and no monetary compensation was received for this review.
(reviewed 31 days after purchase)
on April 19, 2015 :
The adventure continues with singer Virginia Benoit, “Hope” in Homeland's Hope. When she sees a friend imprisoned she must rise above her fear to aid in the plans for a rescue attempt. I liked how this second chapter went back covered some of the same events but this time from Hope's perspective. Hallee Bridgeman has great job weaving the individual stories into one.
(I received a copy of this e-book from the author through The Book Club Network in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are entirely my own.)
(reviewed 19 days after purchase)
on April 5, 2015 :
The second book in the series. This book focuses on the character, Hope. It is told about her contributions to the war and her trials in contributing. It includes others from the other stories. It gives a little more information about Temperance, whom we met in the first book. Once again, my only complaint about this book is it ended too soon. Well written historical fiction based on real persons. I recommend this book. I was given this book in exchange for my honest review.
(reviewed 8 days after purchase)
on April 1, 2015 :
This is the second book in this well written, face paced, quick read series by Halle Bridgeman, as we meet Virginia Benoit, whom grew up in St. Louis, Missouri. She is the talented daughter of trombone player Alexander Benoit and his singing wife. Her only downfall, being biracial she is neither accepted by the white or negro community: too white for the negroes, too dark for the whites. So she moved back to Paris and became a success even catching the eye of a Nazi General Schmid. This relationship leads her to offer her services, complete with plan, to the USA.
"...I think I can convince him to play along. He and I can stage a very public disagreement which would make me look sympathetic to Hitler's Berlin....everything I hold dear has been destroyed by the Fascist war machine. I've lost my home..work..many, many friends....I am entirely unfamiliar with your religious beliefs, Major Radden, but speaking for myself, I feel very strongly that God has called me to do this. In light of that, I feel my reputation is a small price to pay." pg. 13
She is accepted and into an elite team, compiled of only women, each with a special task, whom support, encourage and pray for and with one another. Virginia is taught a code, based on music, to use when contacting with info as it is easy for her to learn and if she were to be found with a code book, her cover would be blown. Virginia's code name: HOPE-optimistic attitude of mind based on an expectation of positive outcomes, often without evidence that events will end well. pg. 10
You will be captured by the excitement, the intrigue and reminded of just how important the faith of each of these women was.
"Once she'd completed her duty, she pulled out a prayer bench and slipped to her knees. She didn't feel fear or apprehension, but she knew she needed strength and endurance to get through the next several weeks. She prayed that the missions would go smoothly...for friends' safety and protection...for an end to the Nazi Regime and the wisdom to know what she could do to help hurry that along." pg. 28
Virginia arranges to have a tour of a local prison, before 6 am by saying General Schmid had suggested it. On this tour, she sees fellow agent and one of her best friends, Temperance whom is a prisoner of war being tortured. She also gains information on some of the officers, their titles and duties, as well as makes contact with their inside man, British Captain Ewing. How very detailed and intricate this whole
A performance by Virginia is arranged at this prison. Her job will be to keep all eyes on her while another operative takes care of the prison break.
This will be Virginia's last performance as things are getting too dangerous for her, even though she is an excellent performer. She is not of the Aryan race and therefore is at risk.
"Restless, she surged to her feet and paced the length of the room. 'I've felt the same way. I would have asked to be removed before now if it wasn't for Temperance." pg. 44
And then a curve ball that no one expects-what will become of Virginia? The prison break? Temperance?
As with all the books, you will enjoy meeting the real lady whom the book is based upon as well as the situations they faced and other historical information. You will also enjoy the translation key included and the reader's guide at the end. These stories are meant to be so much more than just an enjoyable read. As Hallee says, "I pray that these extended parables can help readers come to a better understanding of truth. Please prayerfully consider the questions that follow, consult scripture, and pray upon your conclusions. May the Lord of the universe richly bless you." pg 66
Pick up this book today, so you can read for yourself what happens. And you may as well pick up the rest of the series as well, because, trust me you will want to keep reading through the entire series.
I was given this book by bookfun.org in exchange for an honest review.
(reviewed 8 days after purchase)
on March 30, 2015 :
Virginia Benoit is an African American with a great musical ability. Not finding complete acceptance in her homeland of America, she migrated to France where her lovely singing voice was appreciated and her race didn’t matter. Prior to WWII, she was the toast of France. When the Nazis appeared on the scene, with their racial bigotry, she was no longer appreciated and much of her property was confiscated. Escaping to England, she wishes to become part of the war effort to free her adopted country from the Nazis. When she approaches the Intelligence Office she is immediately made a part of a secret group of ladies who are being trained in clandestine activities. While in her training she is given the code name Hope and she discovers that she has an interest and aptitude for working with chemicals. Upon her return to France she begins work with the French Resistance.
This is the second exciting installment in the Virtues and Valor series. This is based on the lives of real women who worked to help the Allies overcome Germany during WWII. The author once again, includes fascinating historic facts plus a generous list of British slang terms and French words. This will leave the reader rushing to purchase the next installment.
I received this from The Book Club Network.
(reviewed 4 days after purchase)
on March 29, 2015 :
I've been looking forward to continuing this series with great anticipation since reading Temperance’s Trial (Part1). The Homeland’s Hopes fictional character of Virginia Benoit is inspired by the very real heroine of Josephine Baker. Virginia Benoit, codenamed Hope, is a talented singer/performer who vows to do her part to assist taking down the Nazi regime during WWII. These are the most amazing stories of self-sacrifice and heroism I've read.
Hallee Bridgeman packs so much action into these serialized novellas that you are literally on the edge of your seat with the nail biting suspense. If you love historical fiction inspired by historical people and events that includes stark bravery of heroes and heroines, you will be inspired by this series.
I received a copy of this book from the publisher, through The Book Club Network (bookfun.org) in exchange for my honest review.
(reviewed 5 days after purchase)