The Girls in Blue is the first book in the series of the same name by Fenella J. Miller. The three girls of the title are each introduced within this story that focuses mainly on Jane Hadley as she escapes her abusive father to join the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force (WAAF) as Britain first enters World War II.
As the story moves between Jane and the pilot she meets, Oscar Stanton, we see both her introduction to the WAAF and Oscar’s experiences as an officer. As their acquaintance begins to deepen, Jane reacts in fear and a pattern starts to emerge of her shutting things down between them only for events to bring them together again. And there are quite a few occasions where danger and injury occur, at times in such quick succession that the story nearly verges on melodrama.
With characters that are quickly drawn, this is a slightly frothy affair that doesn’t explore too deeply below the surface, while still dealing with heavier topics. I did have some questions come to mind about the official secrecies act and Jane’s adherence to it, and could have done with several less references to her father – the villain of this story – as “that man.” But it is a quick, entertaining read that leaves the reader unsurprised by the inclusion of a slang dictionary in the series bibliography yet ready to eagerly dive into the rest of the series.
This is a romance, a coming of age story, and an interesting look into British military life in the early years of World War II. I’m looking forward to continuing the series (the publisher sent me an invitation to read an early copy of book 3, The Officer Girl in Blue) and if you are looking for a diverting read that is easy on the history lessons, with romance and peril, and don’t mind a bit of language and mentions of premarital intimacy, you might also want to give it a go. If historical fiction set during World War II is a favorite, Fenella J. Miller might just be your new comfort read author.
The Girls in Blue by Fenella J. Miller (The Girls in Blue #1) | Aria, December 2020 | ebook, 253 pages
This review refers to an ebook I voluntarily read through my library’s Overdrive service. No review was required and all opinions expressed are my own.
About the Book
They’ll come together to do their bit for the war.
Jane Hadley has nothing to lose when she runs away to join the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force. Whatever faces her in war-torn London can’t be any worse than staying at home with her abusive father…
The city is nothing like she could have imagined, but she’s soon on the move, travelling from base to base for her top-secret training. Making plenty of new friends along the way, it doesn’t take long for Jane to embrace her growing confidence – especially under the attentive eye of dashing Officer Oscar Stanton.
Life as an independent woman is as rewarding as it is exciting, until Jane’s father tracks her down and it crashes to a halt. Jane will need all her new-found strength to find her way back to the frontline – and to the man she’s fallen for…