Beautiful and Bittersweet

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elith Avatar


I absolutely loved The Silent Unseen. It is an exciting, informative, and beautifully written piece of historical fiction.

The story follows two teenagers Maria and Kostya as they experience enmity, loss, and love in their search for home in war-torn Poland. The story focuses on the complex relationship between Poland and Ukraine before and during WWII. As someone who knows very little about this aspect of WWII history, I found this book to be a very helpful introduction to the topic.

The story was immersive, containing beautiful and heartbreaking depictions of the landscapes and lives ruined by war. I could have read this book much faster, but I found myself intentionally showing down to savor the storytelling and feel the emotional tension of the characters.

My only disappointment was with the abrupt ending. I do not mind when books are slightly open-ended, but I would have liked just a few more pages to resolve some of the conflict that was built up in the proceeding chapters. Otherwise, I thought the pacing of the story was great.

Thoroughly researched and brilliantly written, I enjoyed reading this book and I will certainly come back to it again in the future.

Note: This book depicts some of the atrocities of war and complexities of political alliances which might be difficult for younger readers of the genre.