Our Darkest Night

I would like to thank Goodreads for running the giveaway where I won the ARC for this book, as well as thanks to Jennifer Robson and William Morrow Paperbacks.

Our Darkest Night is an emotional novel full of devastating sadness and uplifting happiness. The romance was very gentle and happy, almost taking a backseat to the danger of the plot. But it became larger and clearer, so it provided a good opposition to the dark and dismal background of World War 2.

            Antonina is a young Jewish woman from Venice who lives with her father when the dreaded thing happens. Antonina must leave her family to save her life and escape the persecution awaiting the Jewish people of Italy. A young man from the countryside, Nico, comes to Venice and helps her escape while they pretend to be happy newlyweds heading back to his family’s farm. The threat of the war seems so much smaller there, but Nico and Antonina are unaware of just how terrifying this war will be.

            I didn’t feel that Nico had a lot of character development over the course of the book, but they revealed his character bit by bit, so it felt like I was getting to know him better as Antonina did. By the end, I felt that I knew him well and it made up for his lack of development.

            Antonina developed into a stronger person. She grew in her ability to work hard, her intelligence when given tough situations, and her ability to trust and rely on others while still doing her part. She could have had more growth after the later events of the novel, but I felt that she developed enough for a standalone book that focused more on the romance and danger of the time.

            Overall, I gave this book 4.5 stars. I did this because I believe the author did a good job of fictionalizing the events of the time to her romantic story. The danger to Antonina felt real. I will say it didn’t feel quite as emotionally impactful as I expected it to be. It felt like the story was simply being relayed to me rather than me being shown through the character’s emotions what happened. I kept thinking about the choice to write this book in the third person point of view. I would have liked to read it in the first person to gain a closeness with Antonina that I felt was lacking in the novel.

            I would recommend this book to fans of Outlander and historical fiction. I believe those readers who are looking to branch out into the historical fiction or historical romance genres will enjoy this novel and, like myself, begin looking into similar books. Today is January 5th, which is publishing day for Our Darkest Night! Look for it at your closest bookstore.

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5


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