Review Detail

4.3 2
Young Adult Fiction 1937
Girl power in its finest form
Overall rating
Writing Style
In this alternate history, women are subject to being drafted and can enlist during World War II. Three of the young women who sign up are Rio Richlin, Frangie Marr, and Rainy Schulterman, all with different backgrounds, different hopes, and different paths in the war, but their stories overlap in unexpected ways as they face the front lines of one of the most dangerous wars in history.

The premise for Front Lines could not get me more excited. Michael Grant skillfully places the reader right in the middle of America during World War II and creates an authentic story about what might have happened had women been able to serve. The historical details are clearly well-researched, but what strikes most is the portrayal of war itself. The story never shies from gruesome detail nor hides from the consequences of such monumental conflict. Nothing is held back, and, under the not always attached guts and all, the soul of the story is about the strength, survival, and boundlessness of the human spirit.

Each of the young women, Rio, Frangie, and Rainy, have their own spark and sense of character. Though I love them all, Rio may be my favorite with her surprising and beautiful character arc. Each person has different reasons for serving, and the inclusion of scenes with their families and life pre-enlisting adds another layer to the story. There is both a toughness and a softness to each main character, and their deep hearts will make readers want to root for the characters’ happiness in the middle of a battlefield of blood and death where any future happiness seems impossible.

Front Lines sweeps the reader up in a story of pain, life and death, and every beautiful and aching moment in between. I eagerly await the next installment about these powerful women and the war they fight.
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