Hello, Sunshines, I have the huge pleasure to be today’s stop on this fantastic blog tour for; What Did You Do In The War, Sister? by Dennis J. Turner. I can’t wait to share this book with you all, plus I have a wonderful exclusive guest post by Dennis, so settle down and enjoy!
What Did You Do In The War, Sister?: Catholic Sisters in the Nazi Resistance by Dennis J. Turner
“A powerful story of seldom-sung heroines in humanity’s darkest days and a vivid reminder of the power of conscience.” — Edgardo David Holzman, author of Malena
Throughout the occupied territories, Catholic Sisters were active members of The Nazi Resistance.
Based on letters and documents written by Catholic Sisters during WWII, this book tells the remarkable story of these brave and faithful women.
From running contraband to hiding Jews, from spying for the allies to small acts of sabotage, these courageous women risked their lives to help defeat the Reich.
This is a story that needs to be told.
“an engaging account of World War Two as told through the voice of a fictional Belgian nun… fascinating and valuable.” — Donald Lystra, Author of Season of Water and Ice
“”…a generous recounting of the deeds of marvelous nuns living in the midst of mortal danger. It’s also a great read!” — Father James Heft, Professor of Religion at the University of Southern California
Exclusive Guest Post by Dennis J. Turner
WHY A FARM GIRL?
Many readers of my book What Did You Do in the War, Sister? have asked why I had Sister Christina come from a farming background. When I first started thinking about the qualities Sister Christina would need in order to do some of the things she would have to do during those five years of German occupation I compiled a list of characteristics I thought she would need to possess.
In that list were:
(1.) Intelligence, seasoned with a healthy dose of common sense
(2.) Physically strong and inured to hard work
(3.) Resourceful, a good problem solver
(4.) Brave and not easily intimidated
(5.) Risk taker
(6.) Sensitive and generous
When I considered these characteristics I realized that my female cousins who had grown-up on farms possessed many of these very qualities. I imagined if I was part of the Belgian Resistance that they were the kind of persons I would want to “have my back.”
Little did I realize at the time, however, that having Sister Christina be a farm girl from Fort Loramie, Ohio, would be the source of some good-natured familial tension among my cousins. One of my initial book launches was held in Minster, Ohio, and was attended by a raft of cousins. After my talk most of my extended family gathered at the Wooden Shoe Restaurant for down-home lunch. During the meal several of my female cousins began debating which one of them “Was Sister Christina.” They seemed mollified when I told them that Sister Christina was more of a composite of all of them than a fictional twin of one cousin.
Peace was restored.
Readers of my book, often ask me why I was so insistent on the use of endnotes. Endnotes may often distract the reader if he or she periodically stops reading the narrative takes detours to the end of the book. I confess that my use of endnotes reflects a bias I have about some books of historical fiction. In those books, the author may craft a marvelous story set in a well-known historical period with historical events and historical characters creatively interwoven into the narrative. The actual events and characters may be accurately portrayed in the book … or not. Some scenes described by the author may be based on primary historical records that the author has found through painstaking research in libraries, archives etc. Even the dialogue in the book might be built around letters, diaries, transcripts and memoirs. On the other hand, some scenes and dialogues may be purely the product of the author’s imagination.
That may be a good thing. Such creativity often constructs a compelling narrative which spurs a reader to venture beyond the opening chapter.
On the other hand, many readers enjoy historical fiction because they can comfortably absorb considerable historical information without plowing through dry history books. The catch is that the history they are absorbing may have little or no basis in fact. It is often completely unsupported by primary historical documents. For example, the author may suggest that Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address was written by Secretary of State Seward. (Endnote: totally untrue.) This bit of fictional deception may have enhanced the storyline dramatically, a perfectly justifiable literary technique.
In my opinion, however, if a reader closes the book and walks away believing Seward wrote the Gettysburg address, the author has done a great disservice to the reader. I think the author owes it to his readers to tell them which scenes are based on the historical record and which scenes are the product of the author’s creativity.
That is why in my book I tried to alert the reader though the endnotes about scenes which were based on original documentation and which scenes and which dialogues were the product of my imagination. My hope was that readers would be able to distinguish between the book’s non-fictional aspects and its fictional features.
About the Author
Dennis Turner graduated from Georgetown University in 1967 with a degree in History. He received his Juris Doctorate degree from Georgetown University Law School in 1970. He has served as an Assistant County Prosecutor and as a Magistrate-Judge. Since 1974, he has been a Professor of Law at the University Of Dayton School Of Law. During his tenure at the University of Dayton he has served as Assistant Dean, Acting Dean, Director of the Law Clinic and Director of the Legal Profession Program. The University of Dayton has awarded him its highest award for teaching, The Faculty Teaching Award. He has also received numerous Teacher of the Year Awards from the students at the University Of Dayton School Of Law and was chosen to be one of the Master Teaching Fellows for the University of Dayton. He has been a visiting professor for the University of Notre Dame London Law Program. He also has extensive experience with the British criminal justice system through his association with the barrister firm, Pump Court Chambers, in Winchester, England.
Dennis Turner is the author of many law review articles and a law text book, Steele v. Kitchener Case File. For two years, he also wrote a bi-weekly column for the Dayton Daily News entitled, On the River.
Blog Tour Schedule
Monday, July 6
Review at Books and Backroads
Wednesday, July 8
Excerpt at What Is That Book About
Thursday, July 9
Review at YA, It’s Lit
Friday, July 10
Review at Books and Zebras
Monday, July 13
Excerpt at The Caffeinated Bibliophile
Wednesday, July 15
Guest Post at Chicks, Rogues, and Scandals
During the Blog Tour, we are giving away a copy of What Did You Do in the War Sister?. To enter, please use the Gleam form here – What Did you Do in the War Sister
– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on July 17th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Paperback giveaway is open to the US only.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspicion of fraud will be decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– The winner has 48 hours to claim prize or a new winner is chosen.