Cover Image: A Light in the Window

A Light in the Window

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Member Reviews

Thanks to Netgalley for a copy of this book for an honest review.

Bit of a strange premise: Jewish woman pretends to be German and live with her dead bosses Nazi son! It was OK but think the whole WW2 book thing has reached its limit!!
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Margarete is a Jewish maid working for a high ranking Nazi. The house is bombed and her employers are killed. Margarete seizes the chance for a new life and swaps clothes with the dead daughter of the house, leaving her Jewish identification behind. She feels safe until Wilhelm Huber, her employers' son arrives from Paris, searching for his sister to claim their inheritance...
A Light in the Window in an historical novel set in 1941 in Germany and France.
OK so this was a beautifully tragic book but does not offer a full conclusion: there will be a sequel! I loved the characters, the plot was wonderfully captivating although I doubted the realism. I thought the research into the lives and fears under Nazi rule was accurate. However, I did have to suspend my disbelief about the relationship between the main characters. The book overall was completely enthralling and the dramatic licence was creative, entertaining and emotive.
The whole of the book is delivered through the third person narrative perspectives of Margarete and Wilhelm. The mixed emotions from both characters are well written and fully explored to make both seem very human. Margarete shows amazing courage and daring as she adopts her new identity. Her determination to survive is inspiring. The nuances of Wilhelm's realisation that the Nazi stance on Jews is not accurate is delicately handled.
A beautiful love story ensues. Both Wilhelm and Margarete struggle against the Nazi ideology which governs their lives. Both are in danger and risk death. I didn't realise that there would be a sequel so the plot does not wrap up everything but does come to a major turning point following a dramatic and tragic twist.
A Light in the Window was a joy to read for an historical fiction fan.
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A good ww2 story with a different premise of the Jewish girl pretending to be a Nazi.  I enjoyed the story with lots of twists and tension and look forward to the sequel
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As a Jew in Nazi controlled Berlin, Margarete’s future is in peril.  Taking on the identity of a German girl killed in a bombing raid gives Margarete a chance for survival, but the family of the German girl becomes instrumental in revealing her true identity.  Well written.
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3 stars.

I wanted to like this book but couldn't quite bring myself to rate it higher than 3 stars. While the premise is one I haven't read yet (impersonating a dead Aryan) it felt like a reasonable attempt at a third draft that required yet another go-over, paying closer attention to the details. It could be a bit repetitive and preachy, as if geared to someone who lived under a rock and knew absolutely nothing about WW2.
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There are so many WWII books coming out lately, so it's hard to stay 100% unique. Although I didn't feel like this had any unique factor, it was still a moving read and Kummerow's beautiful writing helped keep me reading. I struggled to connect with the characters but sometimes, that's okay, as long as the story makes up for it. Definitely read this one if you're a fan of historical fiction, especially set during WWII.

Thank you to NetGalley, publisher and author for an ARC copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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Thank you net galley for the advance reader copy of this novel.   This was a WWII historical fiction about a Jewish girl who pretends she is not to survive.   The plot line was somewhat transparent in this novel but I enjoyed Margaret story and her courage.    Reiner was a character you lived to hate and Wilhelm was a hero beneath his awful Nazi uniform.    I loved the twist at the very end and saw there would be a sequel.   I can't wait to see how the Huber money is used to save Jews!!!
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I was all over the map with this book. I loved the suspense and story line but really despised some of the characters. It is definitely hard to read the anti-semitism and the pure hatred that was alive and well during this time period. 

Margarete is Jewish and working for a German family that are heavily involved with the Reich. During an air raid the families home is hit and Margarete is the only one to survive. As she crawls out of the rubble she makes a choice that will change her world dramatically. She takes the papers of Annegret, the daughter of the S.S officer in hopes that she can become her and her life will no longer be worthless. What she doesn’t think about, in that split second, is that two family member were not in the house when it collapsed. Annegret’s brothers are S.S. Officers as well living and working for the Reich and will be looking for their little sister after the tragedy. 
This book was a roller coaster of emotions but so well worth the read. 

Looking forward to the sequel and will definitely be reading more from this author.
Thanks to Bookouture and NetGalley for the advanced copy.
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Another tale of survival, another WWII tale, another tale I did not finish.  Although I thank NetGalley for this ARC in exchange for an honest review, the honest opinion for me is the fact that I'm just about finished reading these types of historical fiction.  Hundreds (if not more) are flooding the market, but there's just so much you can read before they all sound alike.  A forgotten diary, secrets and denials in families, a painting taken by the Nazis that's worth millions, themes such as these and more that go on and on.  Yes, they are appreciated by many, requested by many and reviewed by many...given 5, 4, or 3 stars.  Well the publishers keep publishing WWII stories until the public has had enough -- that's me, I've had enough!
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What a beautiful and emotional tale this was! The story of a Jewish girl rescued by a German officer and the feelings developing between them despite their different backgrounds and the horrible circumstances.
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I really loved Not Without my Sister by Marion Kummerow. So, when I saw that Kummerow had a new book release, A Light in the Window, I knew I had to read it as I really enjoy her writing style and how easily Kummerow can draw you into her stories.

It is 1941 in Berlin and an air raid has just dropped a bomb on the home of Herr and Frau Huber, killing them and their spoilt daughter, Annegrete. Margarete Rosembuam, their Jewish maid is the only survivor. Taking on the identity of Annegrete allows Margarete more freedom in Berlin more so than what she would ever have if she told the SS her true identity. But, her lie comes with a price when Wilhelm Huber, Annegrete’s older brother, becomes aware of her charade and decides to use the ruse to his own advantage.

There are so many things I want to say about the characters in this story, but I am really not sure where to even begin! I have always said that I love stories and characters that can garner a reaction out of me whether it is awe, hate, love, horror, etc. This story certainly did that and I found myself at times wanting to bang my head on my table because Wilhelm was really trying my patience! I absolutely hated him, but yet didn’t. He may not have been sadistic and cruel, but he was still a Nazi and held a lot of the views that Nazi’s held about anyone Jewish. I know this is a hot topic kind of trope of a romance with a Nazi and someone who is Jewish, but both Margarete and Wilhelm really made this story come to life and I think portrayed a love/hate type of relationship with sprinkles of reality.

I wouldn’t say that the ending particularly leaves you on a cliffhanger, but it does make you want to find out what happens next. I am glad to have noticed there will be a sequel to this book!

If you love WWII stories that are a little bit different than the norm, then you will most definitely want to read A Light in the Window.
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I really loved this book. My heart was in my mouth for a good portion of the novel, the suspense and emotions you get from reading this novel is really good. I hope this is made into a film or tv show one day, it’s got a good timeline that would fit very well on the screen.
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Fantastic twists, lies, love, bravery, and action all rolled into this one! You end up on the edge of your seat most of the way through begging Margarete not to be found out! I mean who would dream of taking on a dead girl’s identity? It takes some guts to be that brave, but survival is the prize and anyway goes!

It’s full of tension and unease throughout. The characters are strong, powerful in their own way and everyone seems to have an agenda for their own gain.

I’m a huge fan of historical WWII fiction and this one is right there at the top! I would love to read a sequel to this one Marion!
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A Light in the Window by Marion Kummerow is an historical WWII fiction set in Germany and France.

Margarete Rosenbaum is a young Jewish woman who works as a housemaid for a high ranking Nazi officer and his family.  A bombing raid results in the death of the officer, his wife and daughter, presenting Margarete with an opportunity of survival by assuming the identify of younger Annegret Huber.  Escaping Germany, Margarete lands in Paris where her new found freedom becomes short lived as she faces the challenges of living under the identity of someone else (much less someone she loathes to be) as her life built of lies begins to crumble when her past begins to catch up with her present. 

This is a story of courage, strength and survival.  Margarete’s constant fear of being found out was palpable and the challenges of the moral dilemma she faced was heart wrenching.   

It’s refreshing to learn something new from a topic that is set in a much written about time period, but I did and found it fascinating to learn more about the role the University Library in Leipzig played in the inventorying of band books as well as their reporting of persons who requested these books.

Heart wrenching and compelling story about survival that I couldn’t put down. 

Thank you Marion Kimmerow, Bookouture and NetGalley for a chance to read this ARC that will publish 20JUL21.  It’s one that will stay with me for a while.
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I just finished reading A Light in the Window by Marion Kummerow. I was first attracted to this book by the cover, and I am a fan of World War II historical fiction. The beginning of the book starts out with a bombing raid on Berlin in 1941. Margarete, a Jewish maid for the Huber family, finds herself beneath the rubble of the Huber household. She discovers the Huber daughter, Annegret is dead along with Annegret’s parents. Annegret is two years younger than Margarete. Margarete who was not treated horribly by this family makes a spur-of-the moment decision to grab Annegret’s identification and leave her yellow star in the rubble before climbing out of the destroyed house. Can she pull off an escape and take on the identity of Annegret?

Margarete, now Annegret, takes a train to Leipzig to stay with her Aunt Heidi. Margarete’s Jewish uncle has been sent to a camp. Margarete obtains a job in the central library in Leipzig as Annegret. I thought the library was one of the most interesting parts of the book. The need to report to the SS weekly with a list of people asking for books that might be on a banned list. Now can Annegret avoid running into to the two surviving brothers, Wilhelm who is stationed in Paris, and Reiner who is stationed in Berlin.

The book is constantly exploring the moral dilemma of is a person all bad or all good. This is shown through the two brothers. I felt at times the book was very repetitive. And unfortunately, I felt more time was needed for the ending which was not satisfying for me. However in the author notes, I found that there will be a sequel. I want to mention the author notes once more. Make sure you read them. Lots of research was done and I enjoyed learning about the author’s grandfather. My thanks to Bookouture and NetGalley for an ARC of this book. The opinions in this review are my own.
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A Light in the Window is a historical fiction set in Germany and France centered on Margarete and Wilhelm lives. Margarete takes an opportunity to save herself from her brutal life of maid by forging her identity during a bomb strike. This novel is the story of how things start unraveling in the midst of SS, Gestapo and Resistance.
A tale of survival and fear this novel has a very interesting and different concept. The novel though interesting, the characters were difficult to connect to. The characters seem to have only one dimension and are focused on their own material comfort. At the end they do redeem themselves but too late in the game. A nice read if you are looking for a different story that took place during the World War era.
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Today I’m part of the Bookouture Blog Tour for Marion Kummerow’s latest novel: A Light in the Window. I recently read Marion’s earlier novel, Not Without My Sister, which is also historical fiction.
This story was fast-paced and at times suspenseful, but I will admit that I liked Marion’s other novel better (not sure exactly why, but I just did. I think I like “sister stories”). I found the info in the afterword really interesting about Ms. Kummerow’s research, etc. This story had suspense, romance, and adventure, all set in Paris in WWII.

thank you for my copy and making me part of the tour!

Full review at Beth's Book-Nook Blog
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I really enjoyed reading Marion Kummerow's previous book, Not Without My Sister, so when I saw that she had written another story set during WWII, I quickly signed on. Margarete Rosenbaum is a Jewish woman working as a maid for a high ranking Nazi officer's family. When the Huber's home is bombed ruing a raid, both Hubers are killed along with their twenty year old daughter Annegret. Being only two years older, and looking somewhat like Annegret, Margarete makes a quick decision to use Annegret's identity card to gain her freedom. That spur of a moment decision sets her on a road that she never expected to follow.

This story follows Margarete from Berlin to Leipzig to Paris and the French Countryside. She is living as a Aryan German, but in her heart she is still a Jew. What will she do to survive? I loved Margarete's character. She is a strong woman wit courage, conviction and compassion. She has a moral dilemma which many people faced in war, "is saving many worth killing one?" The other characters were well developed and it was easy to dislike the ones we were meant to dislike. This book was emotional, as well as gripping. Some of the chances Margarete took had me sure she was going to be caught. Reading about how brainwashed the German officers and some civilians were difficult to believe, but I know it happened.

This story does not concentrate on the camps and horrors that happened there, but they are mentioned, and there is an undercurrent of fear of being sent East. The way the German officers treated woman was terrible, but again, it was realistic. The ending was not what I was hoping for, but it was realistic. The story has a satisfactory end to it, but it is set up for a sequel, which I will impatiently wait for. Once again, I learned some things about the restrictions of Jewish persons before they started the transports. I also did not know about the national library in Leipzig and the Gestapo headquarters there. I recommend you read the author's notes at the end to find out her inspiration for the book as well as the historical events that may have been changed for the flow of the story
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Heart-wrenching, emotional and poignant, Marion Kummerow’s A Light in the Window is a mesmerizing wartime novel that will have readers reaching for the tissues on many an occasion.

Jewish housemaid Margarete Rosenbaum works for a high-ranking Nazi officer in Berlin. When his house is bombed, Margarete is the only survivor and when she is mistaken for the officer’s daughter, she sees this as her last chance at freedom. Her new identity unshackles her from the fear of persecution as a Jew, however, her bid for a fresh start is thwarted when she is tracked down by her employer’s son Wilhelm Huber. Margarete thinks that the game is up, but Wilhelm surprises her by playing along with her charade and by insisting that she comes with him to Paris and continues to pretend to be his sister.

Margarete’s back is against the wall and she has no other choice but to acquiesce to Wilhelm’s plan even though she is secretly terrified that at any minute, she will be found out. Why is Wilhelm protecting her? Why didn’t he turn her in? And what does he want from her? In fear for her life and terrified about what each day will bring, the future gets more and more uncertain with each passing day – especially when the Nazis begin rounding up the Jews in Paris and the Resistance steps up its efforts…

With the stakes higher than ever, will Margarete ever find the freedom and happiness which she desperately seeks? Or will she end up losing everything she has always wanted and paying the ultimate price for wanting to become the mistress of her own destiny?

Marion Kummerow’s A Light in the Window is a spellbinding historical novel about courage, sacrifice and love that is so beautifully written and evocative that readers will find themselves completely gripped by this nuanced, immersive and immensely enjoyable tale. A heart-wrenching tale that deftly evokes the pain, frustration and dangers of wartime readers won’t forget in a hurry, Marion Kummerow’s A Light in the Window is a superb historical novel from a master storyteller.
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I wanted to like this book so much and the first half i enjoyed but it lost me towards the middle part. this one came up short for me.

Thanks to NetGalley, Bookouture and Marion Kummerow for early access to this midsummer release
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