My Review: From Sand and Ash by Amy Harmon

My Review:  From Sand and Ash by Amy HarmonFrom Sand and Ash by Amy Harmon
Publication Date: December 1, 2016
Genres: Historical, Romance
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Italy, 1943—Germany occupies much of the country, placing the Jewish population in grave danger during World War II.

As children, Eva Rosselli and Angelo Bianco were raised like family but divided by circumstance and religion. As the years go by, the two find themselves falling in love. But the church calls to Angelo and, despite his deep feelings for Eva, he chooses the priesthood.

Now, more than a decade later, Angelo is a Catholic priest and Eva is a woman with nowhere to turn. With the Gestapo closing in, Angelo hides Eva within the walls of a convent, where Eva discovers she is just one of many Jews being sheltered by the Catholic Church.

But Eva can’t quietly hide, waiting for deliverance, while Angelo risks everything to keep her safe. With the world at war and so many in need, Angelo and Eva face trial after trial, choice after agonizing choice, until fate and fortune finally collide, leaving them with the most difficult decision of all.

My Review

From Sand and Ash is a new historical romance from Author Amy Harmon.

Angelo and Eva were childhood friends whose connection came from misfortune but grew into a bond of affection, always overshadowing the deeply rooted love they had for each other.  Time made them grow apart, but tragedy brought them back together.

“I’m convinced there is nothing worse for the human heart than rejection.”

If possible, I would give From Sand and Ash every star in the sky. It was an astonishing account of happenings, primarily in Italy, during World War II.  To me, there has always been something hauntingly compelling about this portion of world history. To know that some world leaders would have such hatred for a sect of people, and do everything in their power to destroy them, is incomprehensible and deplorable.  It is also very difficult to read and digest, seeing the degree to which a plague of malice can reach out its ugly hand and with several swipes cause more damage than any natural disaster.

“My father told me once that we are on earth to learn. God wants us to receive everything that life was meant to teach. Then we take what we’ve learned, and it becomes our offering to God and to mankind. But we have to live in order to learn.  And sometimes we have to fight in order to live.”

Author Amy Harmon perfectly captured each tragedy and victory with raw, yet rich, emotion. I cried many tears, weeping as the authenticity of the writing struck a cord so deep in my soul that it shook me to the core. I felt empty, open, and exposed. Yet at the same time, there was a lining of peace and contentment that surrounded me like a veil.  I also found love, forgiveness, a will to fight, and hope, and recognized an unwavering love for God to mankind, mankind to God, and mankind to each other.

“Life is like a long note, it persists without variance, without wavering.  There is not cessation in sound or pause in tempo. It continues on, and we must master it or it will master us.”

From Sand and Ash was a wrecking ball for my heart, but quickly became my favorite novel of this year.  It made me recall and take note of a past that so many dismiss or want to hide away, as if it didn’t happen, and filtered in a beautiful love story that is one for the ages.  It was truly a remarkable and unforgettable read that will forever be a part of me.

“I find myself convinced that God loves his children – all his children – that he loves me, and that he provides moments of light and transcendence amid the constant trial.”

More from Amy Harmon

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