• The Bossy Bookworm

Review of Beneath a Starless Sky by Tessa Harris

Harris's action-packed World War II story moves between the terrors of 1930s Germany and the glamour of Hollywood, and it details the heroic measures taken by a brave few characters who are determined to bring down Hitler.

In the newest World War II-set novel by Tessa Harris, it's 1930, and Jewish ballet dancer Lilli Sternberg is anxious to leave the troubled city of Munich.

She becomes heartbroken when a whirlwind romance with a young German army officer, Marco Zeiller, is complicated by wartime events and ends in heartbreak. Leaving feels even more essential now.

Harris winds her tale through Lilli's journey to the United States and her glamorous years dancing in Hollywood--where she rubs elbows with famous figures ranging from Fred Astaire to Prince Edward.

But Lilli must cope with the punishing physical demands of constant, grueling dancing and a potential permanent disability from performing with unhealed injuries. Meanwhile, she has bigger concerns than her career--her family is in grave danger, a man from her past may be terrorizing them, and her homeland is roiling with cruelties, turmoil, and destruction.

Then Lilli's path leads back to Marco, who has in recent years risen through the ranks to work for Goebbels. She and Marco have the chance to help the effort to bring down the Nazis, but at enormous potential cost to themselves.

Harris's book is fast-paced, without a lot of page time spent setting a background or lingering on self-reflection. It's action-driven World War II intrigue, and it's a quick, compelling read.

I received a prepublication digital copy of this book courtesy of Harper 360 and NetGalley.

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Tessa Harris is also the author of the Dr. Thomas Silkstone series and the Constance Piper Mystery series as well as The Light We Left Behind.

If you like World War II-set books, you might also like the titles on the Greedy Reading List Six Great Stories about Brave Women During World War II.