Radar Girls by Sara Ackerman, Cassandra Campbell (Narrator)
Published July 27th 2021 by HarperAudio, MIRA
Length: 10 hours 54 minutes, 368 pgs.
About the Book: An extraordinary story inspired by the real Women’s Air Raid Defense, where an unlikely recruit and her sisters-in-arms forge their place in WWII history.
Daisy Wilder prefers the company of horses to people, bare feet and salt water to high heels and society parties. Then, in the dizzying aftermath of the attack on Pearl Harbor, Daisy enlists in a top secret program, replacing male soldiers in a war zone for the first time. Under fear of imminent invasion, the WARDs guide pilots into blacked-out airstrips and track unidentified planes across Pacific skies.
But not everyone thinks the women are up to the job, and the new recruits must rise above their differences and work side by side despite the resistance and heartache they meet along the way. With America’s future on the line, Daisy is determined to prove herself worthy. And with the man she’s falling for out on the front lines, she cannot fail. From radar towers on remote mountaintops to flooded bomb shelters, she’ll need her new team when the stakes are highest. Because the most important battles are fought – and won – together.
This inspiring and uplifting tale of pioneering, unsung heroines vividly transports the listener to wartime Hawaii, where one woman’s call to duty leads her to find courage, strength, and sisterhood.
5 Stars: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
It is December 1941, and Hawaii has been attacked by the Japanese. The US has declared war on Japan and Germany has declared war on the US. The men are leaving the army to go to war and many have been killed. Women are being recruited to join the Women’s Air Raid Defense (WARD), a top secret program to guide pilots into blacked-out airstrips and track unidentified planes over the Pacific Ocean. Daisy is one of these recruits, and she along with others will deal with sexism, not being taken seriously, sexual harassment and more issues when a group of women break into a male dominated field.
This book is inspired by real events that took place during WWII. I really enjoyed getting to know the women in this story. They came from all walks of life, Daisy being a horse trainer. Some were married to service men and every one of them knew someone, a friend or relative that was fighting. These women were smart and picked up the job and the lingo quickly. They were tenacious and wouldn’t give up, loyal to their country and their new friends, and courageous. We read about the blitzes in Europe, specifically the UK, but they were living under the same fear in Hawaii. This was both a character and plot driven story. There was some romance, but was balanced nicely with all the other storylines. The writing was wonderful. It was descriptive to allow the reader to see and feel what was happening. I liked that this was historical fiction, not dual timeline to interrupt the flow of this story. Daisy did have a few flashbacks or reminiscences for her particular story, but they were woven into the story nicely. This story was well researched, well plotted, and well written. One that I recommend if you like themes of friendship, women breaking into new roles, WWII, perseverance and courage.
I did a read/listen with this book, but the majority, I listened to the audiobook that was wonderfully narrated by Cassandra Campbell. Her expression, emotion, tone and voices made this a pleasant reading/listening experience. The publisher generously provided me with a copy of this book upon request. The rating and opinions shared are my own.