The Woman at the Gates: Epic, heart-wrenching and gripping World War 2 historical fiction

· Bookouture
5 reviews

About this ebook

1944, Germany. Gazing through the barbed wire, Antonia makes a vow: she will not let her family die in this camp. She will find a way for them to escape, even if it costs her own life. The Nazis have taken everything from her, but they can never take away her courage…


Would you go into a prison camp if there was a chance to save your family? When resistance fighter Antonia’s beloved sister and her children are taken by the Nazis, she knows what she must do. Only she is strong enough to save the family who have been her whole world since she was separated from her true love, Viktor.


As Antonia clutches her nephew’s little hand in hers, her other arm tight around her sister Lena, she knows she has made the right choice. And as the truck rattles towards a brutal labor camp, Antonia’s only thought is of how to stay alive, so she can escape and rejoin the fight to free her country. But with the brutal guards on the lookout for anyone who was involved in the resistance, she knows she can trust no one.

As the freezing winter sets in, her older nephew soon falls ill, while Lena starves to give her children what she can. For Antonia, the only thing worse than watching her nephews suffer is seeing Lena realise that her child will die without help. She cannot let that happen.

With the risk of betrayal always present, she must rely entirely on her own courage and ingenuity to plan their escape. Out of the gates. Away from the Nazis. To safety. To freedom. And perhaps even back to the man she loves…

A heartbreaking, inspiring and totally unforgettable story of the unbelievable courage and determination of extraordinary people in the darkest days of war. Fans of Kristin Hannah’s The Nightingale, Fiona Valpy, and The Tattooist of Auschwitz will be gripped from the very first page until the final, heart-stopping conclusion.


Readers love Chrystyna Lucyk-Berger:


Absolutely heartbreakingGripped me from the first page and I read it in one sitting!Will stay with me for a long time.” Goodreads reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Fantastic!!! There wasn’t a moment when I wasn’t gripped!My heart really achedIncredibly gripping!” Goodreads reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

This book broke me, it was heartbreaking and had me gripped… The descriptions and imagery was so vivid that it felt like I was stepping into World War 2. I cried, I smiled and I didn't want it to end. This book is totally captivating.” Goodreads reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Kept me up all night and I finished this book with tears in my eyes after I read the ending!… Powerful, gripping… Unputdownable… Five stars!Tropical Girl Reads Books, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

A gripping story that will stay with you long after you have put it down… I highly recommend.” NetGalley reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

I could barely put down the book. I smiled, cried… I recommend it to all history lovers!” Goodreads reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Grab a few tissues… Such a powerful story you must read.” Goodreads reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Wonderful intense readSo vivid you will feel you are there. I could not put this story down. I loved the book.” Goodreads reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Riveting, intense… From the very beginning you feel like you're amidst the chaos, the heartbreak, the despair but also the incredible bravery and spirit of the people in WWII.” Goodreads reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Ratings and reviews

5 reviews
October 18, 2021
I received a free electronic copy of this exciting WWII historical from Netgalley, Chrystyna Lucyk-Berger, and publisher Bookouture. This is a very detailed description of the Ukrainian aspect of WWII from the beginning, 1944, through the end of the war and the resettlement of those citizens without a country. We follow Antonina Kozak and the extended Mazur family as they flee prosecution in Ukraine and as aliens seeking relocation in the US. This story is based on stories and diaries of relatives of Ms. Lucyk-Berger, with a great deal of research and storytelling skill added to the mix. It is a story that I thoroughly appreciated, imparting facts and memories shared by many immigrants across our world in this age of trouble we are living in today. It shines a bright light on the plight of the world's homeless, hopefully, one that will enable us to do better by them.
Karen Stauffer
October 29, 2021
I don’t understand all the five star ratings this book received and to compare it to The Nightingale is just ludicrous. It might be enjoyable if you are Ukrainian but I spent the entire book trying to figure out who was whom. The Ukrainians and all their civil fighting and all the cities and other words and celebrations, etc. it was so very easy to get totally lost. The characters were never fully filled out and, quite honestly, were not very interesting. I have read dozens of WWll books that my heart pounded and I cried. I only finished this book because I kept thinking it has to get better - it never did.

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