A Sparrow in Terezin by Kristy Cambron
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
After reading The Butterfly and the Violin, I was quite excited to the next book in the series. I happily discovered that Sera’s story continued from the first book, which definitely made me want to read this one! However, I found this book not quite as entertaining as the first in the series.
The historical story was interesting, but I think I liked the first part of it better than the second half. Cambron skips a lot of time – which she does quite well, overall – but I feel like a lot of time was lost, and it was more episodic nearing the end. Like she had to keep to a certain word count or something. I found this especially true with the whole story with Dane. I never really knew what to make of him, and I think he could’ve had a lot of potential, but he fell a little flat because he wasn’t in there much. Also, it didn’t help that I was just hoping Liam would show up, and the whole kinda-romance with her and Dane (basically one-sided; she didn’t really care for him), didn’t float my boat. It just felt very glossed over and could’ve been quite moving with the ending.
The modern story (with Sera and William) wasn’t nearly as good as I’d hoped. The first half of it was the best; I felt like there was a good amount of suspense over what was going on that made the story move, but it kind of dragged near the end. Like, William, bud, I like you, but the whole deal with you keeping everything a secret? Not much of a fan. It was good to see them get their “happily-ever-after,” but it got a little bit dull.
As usual, Cambron’s writing was quite nice. I also appreciate her use of the split story line – it seems incredibly difficult, but she made it work. The stories didn’t connect super well, but enough that it made sense. One major qualm I did have were several instances of what appeared to be using the Lord’s Name in vain (which is why I took at least a star off of the rating.) I was very disappointed to see something like this come from a Christian author. Also, the morals were not super strong – something about hope, or something? It wasn’t very impactful, and there wasn’t enough Jesus. Which is a problem in a lot of Christian fiction, for some reason. I mean, without Him, you’re in big trouble, and you have no peace with God (1 John 2:23).
I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys historical fiction, but sadly, the instances of taking the Lord’s Name in vain prevent me from doing so.