Friday, April 15, 2022

Book Review - The Diamond Eye; Kate Quinn

 

The Diamond Eye; Kate Quinn
William Morrow and Harper Collins Audio - 2022
(combo - read/listen)

I don't read a lot of historical fiction but, I always seem to enjoy it when I do.  I was drawn to this recent release mostly because it was inspired by a true story about a female Russian sniper in WWII. Lydia Mila Mikhailovna, Pavlichenko known as "Lady Death", (Mila) in this story, was credited with killing some 300 Nazis in WWII.  She was just 16 years old when her son was born, subsequently divorced and a student of history at a Ukrainian University when she enlisted in the Russian Army and was given a rifle to fight.

This story was a nice blend of fact and fiction and the chilling winter setting in Kiev seemed ideal as well. The storyline gave much insight to what war is like on the frontline.  It made it impossible for me not to relate some of what happened in this story to the current ongoing crisis in Ukraine today.  I liked how former President Roosevelt and First Lady Eleanor were written into The Diamond Eye. Mila came to the US on a goodwill tour and these two strong women were able to forge a lasting friendship.  A story featuring strong women is always a bonus for me. Although the storyline felt a bit heavy at times, war never being an easy topic to balance in fiction, this novel did have some lighter moments and even a bit of romance as well. The characters, Mila, her former husband Alexei and her partner Kostia were well crafted as well.

This was a combo read/listen for me. The eGalley was sent to my by the publisher at no cost and the audiobook was downloaded by me from the public library. I thought the audio reader - Saskia Maarleveld did a very good job.  I now look forward to trying Quinn's book, The Rose Code soon as well.

Rating - 4/5 stars

27 comments:

  1. That sounds like a really good one, historical and timely too.

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    1. Yes, I wasn't sure what to expect but, I really liked Mila.

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  2. I'm not a fan of historical fiction either, especially during a war, but a woman sniper sure caught my attention!

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    1. The strong female character is what made this story work.

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  3. I had plans to 'maybe' read this before but now I've read your excellent review I'm definitely going to get it!

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    1. I hope you enjoy it. My only real complaint was that it was perhaps longer than it needed to be.

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  4. I didn't know this one was set so much in Ukraine! Makes me want to read it even more.

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  5. I finally read a Kate Quinn last year and really enjoyed it. I had no idea this was set in the Ukraine. It sounds really good!

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  6. I like historical fiction and I want to get to this one as well as her novel The Rose Code. I did like Quinn's novel The Alice Network. Her books run a bit long ... did it drag for you at all?

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  7. I haven't read anything by this author, but I have The Rose Code on my list. Once I try that, I'll know if I want to read more by her. This one does sound good. Did you enjoy the audio more than the print or vice versa?

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    1. Both audio and print were enjoyable. Since it is over 400 pages a combo read/listen is always a nice option.

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  8. I love historical fiction and Kate Quinn's books so am really looking forward to reading this one.

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    1. I like historical fiction now and then but, Kate Quinn will be an author I'll return to.

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  9. I don't read a lot of historical fiction, but really enjoyed The Rose Code last year. Hoping to read more of this author soon.

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  10. I have this on my ereader and hope to get to it soon. I liked her previous books.

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  11. I like her books this one is new to me. Thanks for the review.

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    1. This is my first book by this author but, it won't be my last.

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  12. I'm intrigued by the female character. Will have to check out this book.

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  13. I loved The Rose Code so much that I read twice, almost back to back. It put Kate Quinn back on my radar as a go-to author. I will probably read this--love the cover.

    Thanks for the review and reminding me to get this on my tbr list!

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    1. Jane, I have had The rose Code on my TBR for a while. Most readers LOVED it, glad you did as well.

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  14. Hi Diane! I'm very eager to read Diamond Eye. I love Kate Quinn's books and haven't tried one as an audio yet. Maybe I should!

    Have a good week ahead!

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