Nonfiction Review: When Books Went to War

Available December 2nd:  When Books Went to War: The Stories That Helped Us Win World War II

****4/5 stars

Books can be weapons: The story of the role of literature during World War II, when a a program that brought  books to soldiers– in pocket sized editions reportedly as popular as chocolate, cigarettes, and pin up girls– served to remind us of the power of storytelling in human history.

Recommended readers:

  • Veterans,
  • WWII Buffs,
  • General History Buffs,
  • Lit nerds,
  • and lovers of stories and books EVERYWHERE, this one is for you.

Here’s my Rankings:

  • 4/5 overall


This may seem an odd choice for a “best books for her” website, but we are here because we love books and stories, and this one is a (hi)story of a moment in which books and stories served a high and worthy purpose in modern history.  Manning tells the story of the Americans who drew together to turn a book drive for soldiers to a revolution in the publishing industry– the portable, paperback Armed Services Edition, a powerful symbol in a war against a hateful Nazi regime which included the burning of books.  From the recounting of one soldier’s experience with A Tree Grows in Brooklyn at the outset of the book, I was hooked.  Uplifting and informative nonfiction that read like a story,  When Books Went to War is well worth the time it takes to remind us of the things that are worth fighting for.

Available on Amazon



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