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Lovely War

Written by: Julie Berry
Length: 12 hrs and 57 mins
5 out of 5 stars (1 rating)

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Publisher's Summary

Listen to the novel New York Times best-selling author of The Alice Network Kate Quinn called "easily one of the best novels I have read all year". A critically acclaimed, multilayered romance set in the perilous days of World Wars I and II, where gods hold the fates - and the hearts - of four mortals in their hands.

They are Hazel, James, Aubrey, and Colette. A classical pianist from London, a British would-be architect turned soldier, a Harlem-born ragtime genius in the US Army, and a Belgian orphan with a gorgeous voice and a devastating past. Their story, as told by goddess Aphrodite, who must spin the tale or face judgment on Mount Olympus, is filled with hope and heartbreak, prejudice and passion, and reveals that, though war is a formidable force, it's no match for the transcendent power of love. 

Hailed by critics, Lovely War has received seven starred reviews and is an indie best seller. Author Julie Berry has been called "a modern master of historical fiction" by Bookpage and "a celestially inspired storyteller" by The New York Times, and Lovely War is truly her masterwork. 

©2019 Julie Berry (P)2019 Listening Library

What the critics say

"This fascinating, gorgeously written novel of World War I will grip you and remind you that the greatest danger is closing our hearts to love." (Nancy Werlin, National Book Award honoree and New York Times best seller)

“Julie Berry writes the past as if she lived it.” (Jennifer Donnelly, New York Times best-selling author) 

“Scheherazade has nothing on Berry.... An unforgettable romance so Olympian in scope, human at its core, and lyrical in its prose that it must be divinely inspired.” (Kirkus Reviews

What members say

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  • Jennifer
  • 2019-05-11

Wonderful WW1 Book

Exquisitely written WW1 love stories narrated by Aphrodite and other Greek Gods who have their own need for love and in misplaced efforts to gain it, do stupid impetuous things (one would think god’s to be above the frailties of mortals), including adultery, forgiveness, understanding, blaming, and making deals that go against the fates. All the tragedies of war, bigotry, the changes that began in the US that lead eventually lead to the abolition of segregation, rights to vote, work, education, equal housing rights. The war scenes, letters, horrible contradictions, tolarence and cover up of murders within the military are just a handful of what this novel contains. It is brilliantly written, and believable. I fell in love with the main and secondary characters, have gained a deeper understanding of was and it’s grave depravation, ability to wipe out families and towns, and the toll that the evolution of war took on multiple countries, people, and had shaped the world as we know it today.

I loved this book and will listen to it again. The women are heroins although not spies as in other well written historical fictional. It was about coming of age during wartime, loss, love, and the power of the human spirit to commit and overcome great tragedy. The stories depicted, although fiction has true and factual characters and events that lend this to be such credible depiction of heart.

This is a new favorite author for me. I can’t wait to read more of her work. Her writing (unlike mine) is articulate, beautiful, and made me stretch in my role as the reader and observer of mortal life - love stories in war time being depicted by Greek gods. I though, “what is happening?” and how can the perspective of Greek Gods tie together? Keep reading (or listening). The characters both mortal and Gods bring an unusual perspective to war & love. I thing I may even enjoy learning more about Greek Gods because their characters became real to me for the first time in this writing (other than Disney’s Hercules).

I so loved this book; the writing, the characters, the setting, and the audio delivery, and hope you will love it too!

Bravo to all those who made this audio book available. Thank you.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Lauren
  • 2019-04-15

Lovely account of men, women, and racial experiences in WW1

Many books I’ve read about WW1 and WW2 have been focused on women OR men. This novel creates a full picture of the war’s effects on women, men, race, and nationalism. Rarely has PTS(D) been introduced as a result of service, so that was nice to see included in the broader look at war. It’s not a gory book but I would have liked a little more of a detailed account of James’s battles. Overall, if war novels are your jam and you’re not looking for something like The Nightingale or Unbroken, then this romantic version is a light and fun read/listen. The narrators are also fantastic.

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 2019-04-13

Loved

The various narrators add to this beautifully told story. Love the addition of Greek mythology

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  • MommaBerter
  • 2019-04-06

A Lovely Book, Indeed!

Such a sweet, touching, funny, and heartbreaking story! This is not my typical genre but I loved every minute of it. Julie Berry is my new favorite author!!

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  • Alexandria
  • 2019-03-30

Excellent story of love, music and history

This book was way better than I initially expected it to be. The history that was included in the story was very moving and I loved the way Greek mythology was intertwined with the characters motivations.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Kevin Crumpton
  • 2019-08-07

Creative and unusual read great for all ages

Great read with a very unique storytelling structure. Very well done with loads of historic information conveyed via interesting characters Keeps your attention and doesn’t sugar coat any aspects of war.

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  • MandSWinOK
  • 2019-07-23

Worthwhile

I both enjoyed this book and learned from it. Effortlessly intelligent and presented withiijn a framework I've never encountered before and appreciated.

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  • MadameCooki
  • 2019-07-12

so beautifully depicted and the story was amazing

First and foremost, This book is so beautifully written from the little snippets between the gods to the different (and very fitting) voices for each respective story. It was an intriguing experience and very enjoyable. A fair warning: This book does have a few triggers such as Racism and Traumas. it's set around WWI so it's expected.

My only set back with the Audiobook is the voice actor of Hades whenever something goes on, he sounds a bit odd. can't really describe it too well. I just wished it was better.

all in all, I loved the story and aside from that small notion, I enjoyed the performance. I highly recommend this book to anyone.

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  • Lyn Odom
  • 2019-06-21

So much history!

For me, it was slow to start but once I realized it was a retelling I was hooked. I loved the twists and turns and, of course, the history. Well written, exceptionally well performed.

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  • mkwhite30
  • 2019-05-23

Extremely moving listen

I was very touched by all of the different pieces of people's lives that she covered in this book. The author depicts war wounds, shell shock and fallen friends. All the while still reminding the reader that love and music were what people were actually living for.
I'm a bit of a mythology hobbyist so, I loved how the ancient and current were woven together. It was a pleasant surprise!
I was also surprised at the amount of detail the author put into the book. It seems like she intensively studied the war in every way possible. Right down to all of the social upheavals of the time!
Listening to this book made me appreciate my life and those who fought to give it to me a lot more!