Sisters in Arms: A Novel of the Daring Black Women Who Served During WWII

Kaia Alderson. Morrow, $16.99 trade paper (400p) ISBN 978-0-062-96458-8
Alderson’s impressive debut follows two New York City women who join the Army’s first all-Black officer candidate school during WWII. In 1942, pianist Grace Steele, 26, fumbles her Juilliard audition after learning that her brother died in the war, then joins the Six Triple Eight Battalion of the Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps. Wealthy society reporter Eliza Jones, 23, whose father is the publisher of her newspaper and won’t allow her to take on assignments of any substance, also accepts the Army’s call. The women forge a rocky friendship while navigating the segregated organization, where tented table cards labeled “Coloreds” are placed on mess tables near the latrines. The company closes ranks when their major is almost court-martialed after “backtalking” a general, and succeed in having the charge dropped. Descriptions of boot camp and a U-boat chase during their voyage to Europe are standouts before the battalion is charged with a dangerous mission distributing mail to troops in England and France. Though the dialogue can feel underdeveloped, Alderson impresses with her account of trailblazing Black characters who battle racism and misogyny. The adventures of the Six Triple Eight will captivate readers. Agent: Kevan Lyon, Marsal Lyon Literary (Aug.)
Reviewed on : 05/25/2021
Release date: 08/03/2021
Genre: Fiction
Compact Disc - 978-1-6650-9617-1
MP3 CD - 978-1-6650-9618-8
Ebook - 400 pages - 978-0-06-296459-5
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Audio book sample courtesy of HarperAudio
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