The Soldier's Girl: A gripping, heart-breaking World War 2 historical novel

· Bookouture
3 reviews

About this ebook

France 1944 and the streets are filled with swastikas. The story of a brave English girl behind enemy lines, a German soldier, and a terrible sacrifice… 


English nurse Sibyl Lake is young but skilled and confident.  Resolving to do everything she can to help her country she begins to spy to support the French Resistance. She arrives in Colmar, a French town surrounded by vineyards and swarming with German soldiers, but her fear is dampened by the joy of being reunited with her childhood sweetheart. Jacques is now a French Resistance fighter, risking his life to free his friends and family from German occupation. 


Sibyl’s arrival has not gone unnoticed by Commander Wolfgang von Haagan, the commandant of the Colmar region. She realises letting him get closer is her best chance of learning enemy secrets. Yet despite her best intentions, Sibyl soon finds betrayal does not come easy to her. Commander von Haagen is a soldier who yearns for poetry, music, something beyond the war, and Sibyl begins to enjoy the company of the man she’s spying on...


Determined to do what is right for her country, Sibyl knows what she must do. But will it put both the men she loves into terrible danger?


A beautifully written, heart-wrenching and unforgettable tale of love and loss in a time of war. Perfect for fans of The Letter by Kathryn Hughes and The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah.


What readers are saying about The Soldier’s Girl:


 ‘The Soldier's Girl is a gripping and heart wrenching read that I couldn't tear myself away from… A moving and at times touching read that will stay with me for some time.’ By the Letter Book Reviews


‘This book brought tears to my eyes and every chapter was a new twist to the story… I could not stop reading this book and I know everyone is sure to love it.’ The Lovely Library


The Soldier’s Girl is a captivating, historical fiction novel… I was wholly engrossed until the very end.’ Write Escape


‘I loved this book a wonderful and heartbreaking tale which drew me in; it has strong characters and a beautiful story Goodreads Reviewer, 5 stars



‘A fantastic book. I also loved reading about the Alsace Region.  Makes you think "what would you do in her shoes.’ Goodreads Reviewer, 5 stars


 ‘I really enjoyed this book and all of the characters. What an exciting book with many twists and turns. This book kept me on the edge of my seat and it was hard to put down.’ Goodreads Reviewer, 5 stars


‘Really enjoyed this book. Great characters, very well written and it was fascinating and informative with the Resistance theme. Highly recommend!’ Netgalley Reviewer, 5 stars


What readers are saying about Sharon Maas:

‘Wow! … Such a powerful story, so brilliantly narrated, in such a way that you feel part of it all and are left bereft when it is finished … I LOVED this story so much. So poignant and touching and heartbreaking … All the descriptions are so visceral and beautiful. I loved this book. I lived it.’ 5 stars – Renita D’Silva


‘A powerful and emotional story … truly heartbreaking. The writing was so beautifully descriptive and at times I felt as though I was right there in India. Wonderful … truly stunning … I can highly recommend this book.’ Goodreads Reviewer


This has everything … great characters … strong settings … serious issues. Put all these together with a fantastic writing style and this easily makes my top 10 books of 2016 list.’ 5 stars – Lexi Reads


Simply perfect! … from the first few pages I was drawn in and hooked! … I was blown away by how much I was affected by the story … a fantastic, emotional, evocative read … I urge you to pick up this book, you won't be disappointed!!!’ Dash Fan Book Reviews, 5 stars


‘I absolutely loved everything about this book … beautifully and evocatively written ... , this is a definite 'can't put it down' read.' 5 stars – Goodreads Review


‘A beautiful, mesmerising work of fiction ... I was completely transported.' Krafti Reader


A powerful story with so much depth your ears might pop, I absolutely loved this book. I was completely absorbed by this stunning story, I was there in India, living everything ... Another exceptional read from Sharon Maas, 5*.’ Purple Book Stand


‘WOW I think Winnie is the biggest hero ever ... This truly was a masterpiece.' Reading Renee


I loved, loved, loved this. An easy 5 stars. One of my top reads of this year … wonderful’ Goodreads Reviewer, 5 stars 

Ratings and reviews

3 reviews
Peg Glover
November 2, 2018
The Soldier’s Girl is a captivating, historical fiction novel, which takes place during WWII. I found the book to be a little confusing at first, but after a few chapters, the story fell into place. I was wholly engrossed until the very end. Sybil missed her life and her childhood friends, in Alsace, France. And, although, Sybil had been living in England for years, she always considered France to be her home. So after becoming a competent nurse, she sought a position in France, nursing soldiers back to health. Sybil was granted her wish to go to France, not as a nurse, however, but as a British Agent, for the French Resistance, in Alsace. She was recruited because of her unique ability to speak flawless, French, Alsatian, and German; and her talent for staying calm under pressure. France was under German occupation, except for Alsace. Germany had annexed Alsace instead. The people of Alsace were forced to become German citizens and were given new identities. Everything written in French was destroyed. No one was even allowed to speak the language. As a result, the French Resistance of Alsace was born. Sybil’s job was to supply weapons, organize, and train the members. She was also the one responsible for setting up a wireless connection to England. But shortly after parachuting into France, Sybil met Commander Wolfgang Von Haagan. The man who would frighten her, as well as win her heart. If only the Commander had been cruel to Sybil, it wouldn’t have been so difficult to carry out what her duty demanded of her. Thank you, Bookouture and NetGalley, for my advanced review copy.
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Gaele Hi
November 14, 2018
3.5 Stars – Rounded Sybil, her sister Elena, and mother are first encountered in their trip to France after her father’s suicide and financial ruin. Staying with a school friend of her mother’s at a successful vineyard, Sybil and Elena find a new joy in life, time to heal and recover from their grief and simply be children. But, after arriving in some 5 or 6 years earlier, rumblings of war and their mother’s need to move on and build a life of her own sees them returned to England and torn from the place they’ve come to love. Sybil actually remembers no other home but the chateau in Alsace, and never actually feels as if she’s found her ‘home’ in England. But, with a mother who has first-hand experience of not having a way to support herself without a man, her daughters are encouraged to find a career and be independent: with her sister working as a bilingual secretary, Sybil goes into nursing and gets first-hand experience of what is now the second World War through her patients and work. Having had their time in France, both sisters speak French and Alsatian (a dialect peculiar to the region) as well as Austrian-accented German from early years with their Grandmother, each is poised perfectly to be useful to the Brits in the war. But, it is Sybil that SOE (Special Operations) seeks out, this branch of the government responsible for supporting and infiltrating occupied territories with trained operatives, bringing training and weapons to Resistance fighters as well as being eyes on the ground for the government through radio communique. Sybil is recruited and, because of her ability to speak German, French and Alsatian, set as the lone operative in Colmar, given orders to disrupt, report and above all, provide the local loosely organized Resistance group with funds, weapons and know-how. Maas did a lovely job in explaining the questions that plagued Sybil, how she sheds identities and maintains a cover (with all of the associated determination to defeat the “Boche”), but while Sybil is not the most skilled, it also brought forward the tension that was rampant, and must have been a source of great worry for the people who actually did this job. Her reunion with Jacques, a childhood friend and love and his knowledge of the area with the determination to push the Germans out while doing the most damage possible could be detrimental to her cover and mission, and the feelings developed for Jacques prove to be a source of contention when, as per orders and remit, she is ‘courted’ by a German officer. Questions about Sybil’s kindness and compassion, and her ability to see her patients without labels of enemy were a concern when interviewing, and these questions again resurface with the arrival and the budding relationship with the German. An engagement, hours spent as she cultivates his trust and passes on the information he shares is her job, almost blown when a ham-fisted attempt to ‘come clean’ and ‘flip’ his loyalties ends tragically, and the resultant guilt for her is a weight, one she can’t shake. I can’t help but notice that the region of Alsace and the development of characters, Sybil included, was a bit thin -but as a story that entertains and allows a sense of the bravery, determination and constant tension that occupied citizens, let alone those working against the Germans faced. I just wanted to see characters breathing in the corners, capturing my heart and breath while walking those paths of danger, and it never quite managed to reach those levels. I received an eArc copy of title from the publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
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A Google user
November 2, 2018
This book starts out in Colmar, France in 1929 when Kathleen Lake brings her two daughters, Sibyl and Elena to stay with her friend, Margaux and her children after the suicide of Kathleen's husband, Mervyn. In 1935, Kathleen accepts a marriage proposal from a co-worker who is transferred to England so she and her daughters move back to England. Sibyl eventually becomes a nurse and nurses the war wounded. As World War II escalates, she joins the French Resistance and returns to France as a spy. Sibyl meets a German soldier, Wolfgang von Haagen, who takes a liking to her which complicates her life as her heart belongs to her childhood sweetheart Jacques, a neighbor of Margaux. Sibyl, whose name now is Jeanne Dauguet, is a cobbler's assistant with an "uncle" who is also in the Resistance. As Sibyl dates Woolfgang, he tells her secrets that she passes along. I really enjoyed this book and all of the characters. What an exciting book with many twists and turns. This book kept me on the edge of my seat and it was hard to put down. Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read this very interesting book and review it.
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