Review: Children of War

Review: Children of War

Children of War review

This incredible collection of fourteen stories by fourteen authors focuses on children's traumatic experience in war. Although life is fraught with turmoil and catastrophies, few have encountered the horrifying life-and-death challenge of living in a war zone or fleeing one's home with the clothes on our backs. Perhaps we can understand some if we've gone through a house fire, or lost loved ones suddenly in unpredictable circumstances; but tragedy is often seen differently through a child's eyes than an adult's.

These authors took on an amazing challenge to write stories that help us understand war through a child's eyes covering the genres of fantasy, historical fiction, literary fiction and memoir.

Fantasy authors brilliantly used their dramatic story-telling techniques to pull us into mythical worlds and tear at our hearts while literary and historical fiction authors helped us understand the reality of the past and the emotional impacts of today's war on Ukrainian children.

In my opinion, the most dramatic story in this collection is the memoir Minidoka by Joan T. Seko, where the author details her authentic experience in an American internment camp during WW2. Eighty years later, her memories are still vividly scarred by the trauma she endured. Her story teaches us about the horrors of racism and ethnic discrimination through a child's eyes and warns us about the long-term consequences to both the victim and society. 

Focusing specifically on the Ukraine stories, Elena Shelest in The Borrowed Life gives us a glimpse into the indigenous lifestyle of the Cossack past, while MJ Krause-Chivers (that's me) draws on the current war in Ukraine with Through Vira's Eyes — a graphic portrayal of a child trying to make sense of her circumstances by using her guardian angels to cope with the trauma. Then, Pam Floyd throws us into the emotional aftermath of physical recovery and PTSD in Through a Child's Eyes.

That's just four out of the fourteen stories to both keep you entertained and tear your heart out as you think about the Children.

Regardless of your literary interest, you won't be disappointed in reading any of those stories. And by purchasing, you'll be helping a very good cause. All the proceeds go to help children recovering from the war in Ukraine through Voices of Children Ukraine.