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Women's Fiction Review    

 

 

The Photograph
By Virginia Ellis
Ballantine Books, 2003
Hardcover, $22.95 (321 pages)
ISBN: 0-345-4444-1
 
 
 

While Virginia Ellis has used World War II as the setting for The Photograph, astute readers will find contemporary parallels.

When Davey Marshall is called to serve his country after the attack on Pearl Harbor, his wife, Ruth, accompanied by his sister, Maddy, move to Miami to be close by until he's shipped out for parts unknown. Maddy, just seventeen, believes war is romantic and soldiers are dashing until she meets a cad in uniform.

On the night before Davey and his unit leave the States, a photograph including Ruth and Maddy, is taken at a U.S.O. party. For whatever reasons, Ruth, a practical and frail woman, can see the future of everyone in the picture. Fearful she'll lose her "visions," Ruth decides to stay in Miami. Maddy, wanting to do her part for the war effort, stays with her, taking a job in a munitions plant. 

Ellis combines the elements of romance, coming of age, and women's novels to create a story of the changes in two families caused by war and their need to protect each other. 

Virginia Ellis, author of The Wedding Dress, has also published a dozen romance novels as Lyn Ellis. She is a founding partner of BelleBooks, a small press devoted to publishing Southern women.

 

Pam Kingsbury
Southern Scribe Reviews
 

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