Book Review: A Girl During the War by Anita Abriel

“I’m fifty years old. My wife is dead, and both my sons died fighting in the civil war in Spain. I wake up every morning afraid that my neighbors have been shot by German soldiers, or that Allied bombs have destroyed the churches. And there’s nothing I can do about it.” He wiped a tear from his cheek. “Vittorio said the only way to keep going is by helping others. Let me at least do this.”

Anita Abriel, A Girl During the War

Title: A Girl During the War
Author: Anita Abriel
Genre: Historical Fiction
Pages: 309 (Paperback)
Published: March 8th, 2022

My Rating: ★★★★
Read: 4/18/2023 – 5/4/2023


Once again I was immediately drawn into not only a WWII plot but also one involving art. Unsurprisingly, I ate it up. 

After finding her father killed for (unbeknownst to her) hiding a Jewish artist in their home, Marina takes off for Florence in case the Nazis return. She seeks refuge in the villa of her father’s good friend Bernard Berenson. She takes on the task of helping him catalog his library. Meanwhile, Marina meets Carlos, adding both romance and intrigue to the story.

I liked so much about this book. I especially loved Desi and her storyline. What stood out to me was the respect and detail that went into Italian religion and culture. Altogether, it was beautifully written and a hidden gem in the genre. 

Likes & Dislikes:

What I liked:

  • Loveable characters.
  • Rich storylines.
  • Fantastic setting and atmosphere.

What I didn’t like:

  • Though an enjoyable book, I didn’t find myself super engaged past the first fifty pages.


I found this book while browsing Barnes & Noble one day and was surprised by how difficult it was to find through the library being a relatively new book. (I didn’t purchase the copy at the store because some of the pages were faded.) This author needs more love!

Where to buy the book:

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