Saturday, November 1, 2014

Review: Sleep in Peace Tonight by James MacManus

ebook, 368 pages
Published October 7th 2014 by Thomas Dunne Books

ISBN: 1466852925 (ISBN13: 9781466852921)

Sleep in Peace Tonight is a fictionalized account of events during WWII, particularly during the Blitz in London in 1941.

Harry Hopkins, unofficial representative for FDR, travels to Britain to meet with Churchill. Things are not going well for Britain and Churchill tries to get Hopkins to convince FDR of the need for the USA to enter the war. Without assistance from the USA, Churchill is convinced Britain will be on the losing end. He feels that Hitler must be stopped by any and all means. Edward R. Murrow, war correspondent based in London during the Blitz, is also a prominent character.

This story is more than just an historical narrative. Readers get to see the other more human and occasionally scandalous sides of Churchill, FDR and Harry Hopkins.

"It was said that everyone fell in love in London during the bombing; it was only natural. It wasn't love , of course; it was just frightened people clinging to each other in blacked-out hotel rooms, on creaking beds, while the shrapnel rattled on the roof and the windows blew in. They called it love because it sounded better, because love somehow justified their betrayal, and they were both traitors, weren't they? Perhaps a few lonely, frightened souls had truly fallen for each other in those long nights."

McManus evokes a wonderful sense of place, a genuine feel of the times and the mood of the populace during the Blitz on London during WWII.

I really enjoyed the story, both the historical parts and the "love story" within. 4****

James MacManus is the managing director of the Times Literary Supplement.  He can be found on his website and also on his Goodreads page.

Disclosure: A review copy of the book was provided by St. Martin's Press/Thomas Dunne/Netgalley  in exchange for my honest opinion.


  1. Ti'd like this very much, particularly the human angle.

  2. A new title to me. I enjoy books from this era and if you liked it I probably will.


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