Nancy Plummer was hoping to go home for Christmas, but her mother wrote she wouldn't be able to.
Elspeth Kent was hoping to hand in her resignation, but wasn't able to.
What kept them from their wishes is that in 1941 the Japanese army took over their British-run school, Chefoo, after Pearl Harbor was bombed.
The students and teachers were confined to the premises for a year and then made to move to another school. The new school was in terrible condition, but they made the best of it and hoped every day that they would be rescued by their countrymen.
After being moved to the second school, they were again moved but to a camp. Life was pretty normal except for being kept inside with guards and the lack of sanitation and food.
The book is told in alternating chapters from the perspectives of Nancy a student and Elspeth a teacher.
WHEN WE WERE YOUNG AND BRAVE is based on true events which I never was aware of, but it shows the resiliency and creativity of human nature to work with what you have.
Ms. Gaynor portrayed the characters perfectly, and you could feel what they were feeling.
WHEN WE WERE YOUNG AND BRAVE was a bit slow at first, but once you get to know the characters, you will be drawn in as I was.
This book is about friendship, courage, hope, and endurance. It is a beautiful book that will have you appreciating your freedom and your family.
Miss Gaynor’s meticulous research had me looking for more information about the lives of the teachers and students and more about the Chefoo school. 4/5
This book was given to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
ALL INFORMATION BELOW IS COURTESY OF DANIELLE BARTLETT OF HARPER COLLINS AND THE AUTHOR, HAZEL GAYNOR: