About the Book
Book: The Widow & The War Correspondent
Author: Linda Shenton Matchett
Genre: Christian Historical Romance
Release date: June 15, 2020
Are a new life and new love possible in a country devastated by war?
Barely married before she’s widowed after Pearl Harbor three years ago, journalist Cora Strealer travels to England where she’s assigned to work with United Press’s top reporter who thinks the last place for a woman is on the front lines. Can she change his opinion before D-Day? Or will she have to choose her job over her heart?
A sought-after journalist, Van Toppel deserves his pick of assignments, which is why he can’t determine the bureau chief’s motive for saddling him with a cub reporter. Unfortunately, the beautiful rookie is no puff piece. Can he get her off his beat without making headlines…or losing his heart?
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About the Author
Linda Shenton Matchett writes about ordinary people who did extraordinary things in days gone by. A volunteer docent and archivist for the Wright Museum of WWII, Linda is a former trustee for her local public library. She is a native of Baltimore, Maryland and was born a stone’s throw from Fort McHenry. Linda has lived in historic places all her life, and is now located in central New Hampshire where her favorite activities include exploring historic sites and immersing herself in the imaginary worlds created by other authors.
More from Linda
I’ve been intrigued by female war correspondents since I first saw a museum exhibit about Therese Bonney, a WWII photo journalist. Further investigation turned up Martha Gellhorn, Margaret Bourke-White, Dickey Chapelle, Toni Frissell, and Lee Miller.
Of the more than 2,000 accredited U.S. correspondents who traveled overseas to cover World War II, only 127 were women. Accreditation acted as a contract: The Army or Navy transported correspondents into war zones, fed and sheltered them, and sent their dispatches home. In return, correspondents followed military law and censorship. Correspondents who defied rules lost credentials. They received a pocket-sized “Basic Field Manual” of accreditation rules. Frighteningly, it included a waiver of liability for injury or death.
Correspondents carried a green accreditation card and wore uniforms without symbols of rank, to indicate they would neither give nor take salutes. War correspondents wore green “WC” armbands, which evolved into “U.S. War Correspondent” patches. They were treated as captains, a rank that allowed them to eat with officers and facilitated POW exchanges if taken prisoner. Women correspondents wore skirts with male uniform blouses.
Nearly every commander in the Allied forces refused to allow women near combat. They feared women breaking under pressure (a fate that befell many men), balking at lack of women’s latrines, or influencing soldiers to take risks to protect them.
Still, accredited women saw combat. Sometimes the front shifted, catching women in the thick of action, as was the case with Ruth Cowan in North Africa. Some asked officers to write letters of introduction to combat zones, as did Bourke-White in Italy. Still others got their by hook or by crook.
Female journalists fought a double war: a war against evil and a war against the system. They fought red tape, ridicule, derision, lewdness, and downright hostility to do the job they were hired to do. The grit and gumption of these women enabled them to provide eyewitness accounts to the harrowing events of WWII. Political-reporter-turned-war correspondent May Craig summed up their achievements in a 1944 speech at the Women’s National Press Club: “The war has given women a chance to show what they can do in the news world, and they have done well.” BBC Correspondent Lyse Doucet agrees, “They did it, not just because they were exceptional women, but because they were great journalists.”
I wrote The Widow & The War Correspondent to honor these brave women in some small way, and I hope you enjoy Cora’s story.
Linda Shenton Matchett
I have had the pleasure of reading several books by this author. Each one is filled with wonderful characters and details that make you feel part of the story. It was interesting to read about female war correspondents and how hard it was for them to be accepted into the field of journalism. The author does an excellent job of relating to readers the struggles women faced during WWII as they made their way into a field that many felt were for men.
Cora is a very determined woman and I loved how she never let any setbacks stop her from reaching her goal. She can’t wait for her big assignment but when it comes she is paired with a man who she barely knows. Why were these two put together to cover a story?
Van is not thrilled to be saddled with Cora as his partner and is rather distracted by her. Was it because she was intimidating and beautiful? Maybe it was her confidence that threw him off. As Van gets to know Cora better he discovers that she is a Christian. A statement she made really stopped me in my tracks. “ Some days my faith hangs by a thread.” I think a lot of us can relate to that. I have felt that way over the last few years. It seems that I continue to battle one storm after another. There are days I have even said,”I’m hanging on by a thread.” We may go through trials but God is still there watching over us.
I loved following Cora and Van as they cover the war. There are risks involved that they must overcome. The author makes a great point when Van wonders if he is being a coward for not signing up to be in the war. We all have gifts and each of those gifts work together for God’s glory. Van’s insecurity does show a bit but I think Cora helped him understand that everyone has something to contribute to help in the war effort.
I didn’t realize how difficult it was to get facts about the war but with Van and Cora’s skills they may get the story of the year. I enjoyed watching them banter with each other and vocalize their insights into the war. Their travels send them into danger as one disobeys the rules while the other follows orders. This part of the story is my favorite because it illustrates how we need to follow God’s directions instead of our own. The ending is very emotional and shares moments which Cora and Van both turn to each other for comfort. The faith element in the story is good and shines a light on trusting God and never giving up.
I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. The review is my own opinion.
Texas Book-aholic, June 7
Beauty in the Binding, June 8 (Author Interview)
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, June 8
Inklings and notions, June 9
Betti Mace, June 10
Adventures of a Travelers Wife, June 11 (Author Interview)
deb’s Book Review, June 12
For Him and My Family, June 13
Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, June 14
Splashes of Joy, June 15 (Author Interview)
Mary Hake, June 15
Locks, Hooks and Books, June 16
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, June 17
Connie’s History Classroom, June 18
Artistic Nobody, June 19 (Author Interview)
Happily Managing a Household of Boys, June 20
To celebrate her tour, Linda is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Visa Gift Card and signed copy of the book!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
Thanks for being part of my tour! Your lovely review is such an encouragement to me, and I'm glad you enjoyed Cora's and Van's story.ReplyDelete
I love your books so muchDelete
I can't wait to read this book sounds really good!ReplyDelete
I liked the review. Sounds like a good read.ReplyDelete
Thank you for sharing your review of The Widow & The War Correspondent, this sounds like a wonderful story and I am looking forward to reading it myselfReplyDelete
Linda Shenton Matchett's books are always full of interesting history and a great faith thread. This story about WWII war correspondents sounds exciting.ReplyDelete
This is a book I know I will enjoy.ReplyDelete
Thanks for the contest.
Looks like a good read.ReplyDelete
Hello Linda, The Widow & the War Correspondent sounds like a great read for me! Good luck with your book and the tour! Thanks for sharing it with me! Thanks, Texas Book-aholic, for sharing your review! Have a terrific day!ReplyDelete
Thanks for stopping byDelete
Thanks for sharing your review, this sounds like a really good bookReplyDelete
Deana, Thank you for sharing your excellent review! The Widow & the War Correspondent sounds like a must read.ReplyDelete
So excited to read this book!ReplyDelete
What a stunning cover!ReplyDelete
This sounds like an excellent read. Thank you for your review.ReplyDelete