Over at LibraryThing, I was selected to be an Early Reviewer for George Stratford's novel, Buried Pasts. Below is my review posted to LibraryThing:
In this historical fiction novel, the reader is taken back to WWII and the Berlin bombing raids of 1944. Mike Stafford, a Canadian pilot with the RAF, leads a crew on a dangerous night mission. After a harrowing flight to Berlin and home, the plane is crippled and the rear tail gunner, Geordi, is badly injured. Faced with a landing that is fraught with danger, Stafford makes the decision to order the crew to parachute out to safety while he lands the plane alone. The decision proves fatal to one crew member - which haunts Stafford for the next 20 years.
In Berlin, a young woman watches as her city is bombed. Siggi is forever changed as well on that night as her mother dies in the basement of their destroyed home.
In Chapter 4, we jump forward into the 1960s and see how this one fateful night played out in the lives of the surviving crew members and Siggi, the young German woman.
The plot was interesting, with plenty of twists and turns. The author clearly did his homework on the research. However, the story would have greatly benefited from a strong editor. The overly thick prose distracted from an otherwise enjoyable story. Also, at times, there seemed to be a lack of focus - too many characters with too many backstories vie for the readers' attention. Finally, in an effort to tie up many loose ends all very neatly, the ending felt contrived and forced.