INTENSELY RESEARCHED HISTORICAL FICTION AT ITS BEST – Latest Review of “Nor the Years Condemn” by Rising Australian Author, Justin Sheedy – Review by Lorraine Cobcroft
On the verge of releasing his 4th book, Memoirs of a Go-Go Dancer, much-anticipated sequel to his 1st, Goodbye Crackernight – comic memoir of growing up in the Suburbs of 1970s Australia – rising Australian Author Justin Sheedy is buoyed by recent rave reviews for his Nor the Years Condemn Australian historical fiction series.
Darker tales than his Goodbye Crackernight portraits of Australian life & times, Sheedy’s Nor the Years Condemn series is based on the stunning, true and largely untold Australian saga of shining Australian youth AT WAR. Young Aussies who, instead of becoming rock stars, Formula 1 champions, Olympians and brain surgeons, became fighter pilots in World War Two.
REVIEW OF “NOR THE YEARS CONDEMN” BY LORRAINE COBCROFT at ThrowTheBook.Org.
Young Daniel Quinn was a rising star. From an upper class family, he was a law student at Sydney University, a rugby player, and a loving and much loved big brother. The Jewish Mr Reiser was his friend and mentor.
When, in 1939, Prime Minister Menzies announced that Australia was at war, Daniel’s world turned. He joined the Air Force and became a fighter pilot, shooting down German planes over France. His mission? Stop Hitler.
”Nor the Years Condemn” warms quickly to a gripping story that will elicit horror, fear, sorrow, empathy, compassion, and deep, abiding respect and admiration for the brave men who fought, and died, to free the world from Nazi domination.
It’s clear the author invested heavily in research to present accurate detail, ensuring that his story is not just credible, but a meritorious work that, while clearly fiction, is hauntingly close to being factual. This is intensely researched historical fiction at its best. It adds to a collection of works that ensure future generations can know and understand the world their forefathers lived in, the lives they led, and the sacrifices they made for peace and freedom.
Justin Sheedy not only succeeds in presenting a fascinating account of history, but also integrates a warm human element. His fighter pilots are tough and daring men, but they are real men with diverse pasts and with human foibles and passions. They have nightmares and fears, and they have dreams and desires. They form deep bonds of friendship, and they fall in love.
It’s easy to love Daniel Quinn and his mates. It’s easier still to grieve for the many brave young men who gave their lives for a cause. Many readers will cry over the tragic deaths of key characters. Others will be reminded of men they knew of whose lives were cut short or forever changed by war. Though Daniel’s mother rates minimal mention, mothers will weep with her over the loss of her son. Parents will close the book pondering the mixed joy and agony, for parents and siblings, of greeting a returning survivor, deeply scarred by battle. Many will shudder contemplating the agony for a father feeling compelled to give his consent for a second son, naively looking for adventure, to don a uniform and fly off to a battlefield from which so many will never return.
Though a lover of historical fiction, I am not usually drawn to war stories, but I will read more novels by Justin Sheedy. And I will confidently recommend ”Nor the Years Condemn”, not just as a novel to read and enjoy, but as a story that provides important education and insight for future generations.