Dinah Jefferies’ ‘Daughters Of War’ Succeeds Through Its Story, Transitions, Chapter Lengths

Courtesy: Harper Collins

World War II has, for ages, been the source of so many stories.  From real history to historical fiction, countless stories have come from the noted era.  Yet another tale from the “second great war” (so to speak) will come Tuesday from author Dinah Jefferies in her new historical fiction, Daughters of War.  Jefferies’ eighth novel, it will come more than a year after the release of her then latest novel, The Tuscan Contessa.  This latest offering is yet another wartime drama from Jefferies, much as with its predecessor, but different from the prior novel in its story.  This will be discussed shortly.  The story’s transitions work with the story itself to make for more appeal.  It will be discussed a little later.  The chapter lengths are also of note and will be examined later, too.  They round out the most important of the book’s elements.  When it and the other noted items are considered together, the whole makes the novel another work that will appeal to Jefferies’ established audiences and female readers in general.

Dinah Jefferies’ forthcoming novel, Daughters of War, is a presentation that is certain to appeal to her established audiences and to female readers in general.  The book’s appeal comes in part through its story.  The story in question follows three sisters – Helene, Florence, and Elise – as they navigate life together in the tiny, French town of Saint-Cecile during the waning months of WWII.  The sisters are living there after the war forced their separation from their mother, Claudette.  All three young women face their own trials and tribulations while living in what is apparently their childhood home.  Love is found and lost.  There is also tragedy added to the mix for the sisters.  This all happens over the course of the story’s first two acts, which run approximately 262 pages to be exact.  That makes up the story’s first half.  The story’s third act runs from there to its end and includes Helene working with her love interest, Jack, to help a Jewish woman escape from the Nazis’ clutches and get to Spain.  It also finally uncovers a dark secret about Claudette that while painful, helps bring Helene, Florence and Elise even closer together.  Not to give away too much since the book has yet to be released, but the secret in question involves the all too familiar dramatic plot element of forbidden love.  The story does have a happy ending, and part of that happy ending involves, of course, the end of the war.  All in all, the story is unique from that of Jefferies’ previous novel even with some similarities in mind between the stories.  Keeping that that in mind the story in whole plays out like something one might expect from one of so many direct-to-DVD wartime dramas or even some Hallmark Channel dramas.  In other words, this story, like so many from Jefferies, will appeal mainly to female readers, all things considered.  That is not to say that the story is bad by any means.  It just suffices to say that it is another work that Jefferies has aimed at her established female audiences and female audiences in general.  It is just one part of what will ensure those audiences’ engagement and entertainment, too.  The transitions between the chapters work with the story to add to that sustained interest.

The story’s transitions are so important to examine because they play their own key role in the story’s general effect.  From one chapter to the next, Jefferies does well to solidly end and begin each section.  Where one sister’s story ends momentarily, another’s begins (and in some cases continues) so fluidly from one chapter to the next.  Whether it be a brief cliffhanger that connects chapters or the simple, solid move from one portion of the story to the next, everything interconnects solidly and fluidly throughout the story.  The result is that from the story’s opening to its finale it never leaves readers feeling behind or even lost.  In other words, it keeps the story’s pacing moving that nicely, too.  Keeping that in mind, the transitions clearly play their own pivotal part to the whole of the novel.  They work directly with the story to ensure readers’ engagement and entertainment in their own way.  When this is considered along with the novel’s story, the two elements collectively give Jefferies’ audiences even more reason to keep reading.  Staying on the matter of the chapters, their lengths is also of note.

The chapter lengths are important because just as with the transitions, they play directly into the story’s pacing, too.  Readers will not that the chapters in this book are relatively short for the most part.  They are as short as four pages long and as long as 12 pages at the most.  Just as important to note is that even as the story reaches its midpoint, Jefferies does not just intentionally spread out that section’s chapter.  Rather, she finds the right points at which to lengthen specific chapters and at which to shorten others.  This may not seem like much on the surface, but the reality is that there are authors out there who will reach a certain point in their books and make those chapters extensively long while the majority of the other chapters are not as lengthy.  In the case of this novel however, the chapter lengths fit each portion of the tale fittingly.  Jefferies clearly did not just try to get to the climax and stretch it out for the sake of stretching it out.  Again, too many authors go this route with their novels, and it really gets annoying.  Any true bibliophile will agree with that.  She instead ensures that each chapter runs the right length for itself.  This helps keep readers engaged in its own right and further ensures their enjoyment.  All in all, audiences will find themselves moving through the story so solidly, leaving them feeling even better about themselves having read so much in the process.  By the time the story ends, readers will need a moment to realize they have reached the finale, but in the best way possible.  Again, this clearly is connected to the solid pacing just as much as the transitions themselves.  When the chapter lengths and transitions are considered along with the novel’s very story, all three elements make the novel in whole a good introduction to Jefferies and her works for some and an equally enjoyable offering for her established female audiences.

Dinah Jefferies’ forthcoming wartime drama, Daughters of War is a presentation that her established audiences and more casual female readers will find equally enjoyable.  That is due in large part to the novel’s story.  It is a story of survival in a time of great trials and tribulation, much as with Jefferies’ existing works.  It also incorporates plenty of romance for Jefferies’ noted female readers.  The whole does end with a happy finale despite everything that the sisters go through over the course of the story. The chapters’ transitions play in with the story to keep readers engaged.  They move solidly from one to the next, ensuring not to lose readers along the way.  They interconnect that well throughout the story and in turn also ensure the story’s pacing remains fluid.  Staying on that note, the chapters’ lengths also keep the story moving fluidly, only getting longer when really need be.  Otherwise, the chapters remain relatively short.  Each item examined here is important in its own way to the whole of the novel.  All things considered, they make Daughters of War another offering from Dinah Jefferies that her established audiences will enjoy just as much as more casual readers.

Daughters of War is scheduled for release Nov. 16 through Harper Collins.  More information on this and other titles from Harper Collins is available at:

Website: https://harpercollins.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HarperCollins

Twitter: https://twitter.com/HarperCollins

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