Is there ever such a thing as too many books? I don’t think there are too many books to read, but there can definitely be too many to review. Often I’m sent books and, with an already sagging review shelf, these unsolicited books often end being overlooked – I just can’t fit them in to my schedule. Sunday Shout-Out aims to acknowledge these books and the publishers who have sent them to me.
Sunday Shout-Out is a bookish meme hosted by Monique of Write Note Reviews. If you’re a book blogger and you want to join in, just:
- Share the title, author, blurb and image from a book (or more than one) you want to acknowledge
- Share the genre, price and link to the publisher so readers can follow up if they like the sound of the book
- Ping back to Write Note Reviews in your post.
A Midnight Clear: A Novel by William Wharton. Literature, Fiction. Kindle $9.78 and paperback $11.12. Originally published in 1983.
Set in the Ardennes Forest on Christmas Eve 1944, Sergeant Will Knott and five other GIs are ordered close to the German lines to establish an observation post in an abandoned château. Here they play at being soldiers in what seems to be complete isolation. That is, until the Germans begin revealing their whereabouts and leaving signs of their presence: a scarecrow, equipment the squad had dropped on a retreat from a reconnaissance mission and, strangest of all, a small fir tree hung with fruit, candles, and cardboard stars. Suddenly, Knott and the others must unravel these mysteries, learning as they do about themselves, about one another, and about the “enemy,” until A Midnight Clear reaches its unexpected climax, one of the most shattering in the literature of war.
I read this stellar book years ago then watched the movie that was also good. Well written and thought-provoking. A recommended read!
Also available and recommended the movie from 1992.
NTSC/Region 0. Director Keith Gordon based his excellent script for “A Midnight Clear” on the book by William Wharton, who had been seriously wounded in the Battle of the Bulge towards the end of WWII. He wrote of an American Intelligence team which came upon a team of young German soldiers, desperate to surrender to the Americans, in order to survive Germany’s last offensive. He wrote of fear and suspicion, pain and loss, friendship and hope and a snow-ball fight. And of the agreement to save the lives of the Germans, which went horribly wrong. A haunting, disturbing war movie without much war, looking tenderly at those who go to kill and be killed, and gently painting a truth: There are no real victors; all are wounded by war’s inherent, random cruelty. DVD info.: A special slip-case presentation imported from S. Korea, with Dolby 5.1 sound doing justice to Mark Isham’s beautiful score, the movie is in the original English, with optional English and Korean subtitles, with the original 107 minutes .