Lovely War by Julie Berry
Berry spins a fantastic tale of love and life, war and death. The story centers on a setup involving three Greek gods: Aphrodite, Ares, and Hephaestus.
A trap is sprung. Aphrodite and Ares are caught. There will be a trial, with Hephaestus serving as judge and jury.
Aphrodite pleads her case by telling two love stories set during World War I. James, an aspiring architect and Hazel, a talented young pianist meet in England and fall in love before he leaves for the front. Colette, a Belgian girl with the voice of an angel and Aubrey, an African American composer and performer meet in France where both are entertaining troops stationed in Europe.
Apollo and Hades offer corroborating "testimony" and contribute important details. Interestingly, Hades relates his narrative from the perspective of those who experience death, both in the moments preceding death as well as the life after death.
"It's unavoidable that the war will change him."
Want More? Try These
Elizabeth Wein's World War II series is classic. Code Name Verity earned a Prinz Honor Award.
Martha Brockenbrough's story of love and death involving two gods and two mortals.
Characters James Reese Europe and Noble Sissle are real individuals. Listen to this recording of their Ragtime music from the World War I era.
The period photographs and other images of music and African American musicians add context to the story.