Available August 26th: The End of Innocence

Available August 26th: The End of Innocence by Allegra Jordan

***3/5 stars

Timed to release with the Centenary of World War I, The End of Innocence is the story of German noble Wils Brandl and Boston bluestocking Helen Brooks, who meet at Harvard just before World War I.  When Wils is called back to Germany to fight for the Kaiser,  their newfound hope is challenged and pushed to a breaking point.

Recommended readers:

  • If you like Edith Wharton…
  • If you have a penchant for war novels…
  • and if you are a sucker for star-crossed romance, this novel is for you.

Here’s my Rankings:

  • 2.5/5 for characters
  • 3.5/5 for plot
  • 3/5 overall


Hearkening Edith Wharton,  The End of Innocence  effectively creates a moment in time, in a particular place, on the eve of worldwide change.    It’s one of those omniscient narrator stories in which you get to hear from everyone, which always seems to leave me feeling as if I don’t quite know any of them, but in the case I felt that was true to its form in portraying a time of uncertainty, change, and fear of the unknown, in a  “cling to all you can” sort of cautionary tale.  It is a novel that at first blush seems to be the usual story about young lovers challenged by war, but in the end it is really a brilliant comment in the debate on how to honor those who die in war, on both sides.


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