Everyone Brave is Forgiven by Chris Cleave

Everyone brave is forgiven 9781501124372 hrThis may be my first disappointing read of 2017. That’s not to say that Everyone Brave is Forgive isn’t good, just that it wasn’t as good as I had hoped it would be. It was on so many Best of 2016 lists that I had really built it up in my mind. Also, Chris Cleave is a well-respected best-selling author who I’d never read before, so a lot was riding on his reputation.

Everyone Brave is Forgiven is a tale of oft thwarted love during World War II in London. Given the setting, it’s not surprising that it is also about life in London during the Blitz. I loved the commentary on class and race during this period. The British class system is so hard to really understand coming from North America, so books like this always offer additional insight for me.

My main problem with Everyone Brave Is Forgiven came from the writing, which i found uneven. I know that statement will make waves with some of you. I felt the descriptions were often over written. But the dialogue was awesome – smart and snappy, just the way I like it. That being said, because of the witty banter, the dialogue did little to differentiate or braoden the characters.

Who would like this book? Unless you are like me and have exceedingly high expectations for this book, Everyone Brave is Forgiven will not disappoint. It is a wonderful portrait of the horrors of war on both soldiers and civilians.


  1. This is the one Cleave book I haven’t read. His other books mostly devastated me. I will say that I do find his writing to be a bit uneven in all of his books but never in a way that has been an issue for me. Or maybe because by the end I’m in a heap with a shredded heart? I’d been feeling really desperate about reading this one but maybe it’s OK not to for a bit.

  2. I’ve read all of Cleave’s books: Gold and this one are his weakest. My mind wandered during this book, and while I liked it I didn’t overly love it. Here is what I said in my review: “The story held my interest but the unevenness of the telling perhaps didn’t engross me in it as much as I had hoped. Some parts I found could’ve been sped up, other parts more developed.” So I agree with you totally.

  3. I have this book on my TBR pile, having picked it up after seeing it everywhere, but then found out afterwards that it had gotten mixed reviews. I’m in no hurry to read it; maybe when I’m in the mood for a story set in WW2 xD Thanks for sharing your thoughts about this book with us!

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