Nothing Sung and Nothing Spoken

Nothing Sung and Nothing Spoken
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Release Date
October 18, 2022
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Charlotte Kraus would follow Angelika Haas anywhere. Which is how she finds herself in an underground club one Friday night the summer before World War II, dancing to contraband American jazz and swing music, suddenly feeling that anything might be possible.

Unable to resist the allure of sharing this secret with Geli, Charlie returns to the club again and again, despite the dangers of breaking the Nazi Party’s rules. Soon, terrified by the tightening vise of Hitler’s power, Charlie and the other Swingjugend are drawn to larger and larger acts of rebellion. But the war will test how much they are willing to risk—and to lose.

From the critically acclaimed author of Who I Was with Her, this beautifully told story of hope, love, and resistance will captivate readers of Girl in the Blue Coat and Last Night at the Telegraph Club.

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Nothing Sung and Nothing Spoken
(Updated: December 06, 2022)
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What worked: Powerful portrayal of the complicity of friendship and small acts of resistance during WWII Nazi Germany. This story shows the underground contraband Swingjugend movement and American Jazz in Berlin before and during the war. Friends Geli, Charlie, Minna, and Renate start with discovering the joy of Swingjugend. At first, the Nazi party thinks it's only a nuisance but later this simple act of resistance is seen as much more.

What I really loved about this bittersweet war story had to be the characters. Geli, Charlie, and Renate feel free at the underground clubs where they can be true to themselves. The bubbling attentions and fear of acting out on something as simple as a kiss aren't felt in the clubs. Inside the Swingjugend young German teens can be themselves.

After Hitler gets in control, tensions brew with the friends. Charlie's younger sister Greta stays a member of Hitler's youth group while Charlie refuses to. Renate's brother Hans only wants to go to the university and fears being drafted into a rumored war. And her younger brother Fritz's infatuation with the Nazi regime grows to fear for his family. The actions of all come to a painful and sad ending.

There are moments of joy and firsts like that first kiss with someone you love. Acceptance of being queer even when an authoritarian government tells you otherwise. And finally, the courage to be true to yourself even when the fear of being discovered and worse, being sent away to a camp to be tortured, is a real possibility.

Charlie and Geli's relationship is one that is complex. Geli is the daughter of a high-ranking Nazi officer and is under the belief her entitlement will save her. Minna and her Jewish family see another side of the Nazi regime in their country that considers them subhuman.

I was sobbing at the end. So powerful with its message of small acts of resistance and of staying true to what you believe is right even in the face of growing hatred and division. Fans of Malinda Lo's LAST NIGHT AT THE TELEGRAPH CLUB will love this book. I loved this book! Totally recommend.
Good Points
1. Haunting portrayal of resistance during Nazi Germany
2. Queer love story
3.The complicity of friendship during war
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