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ARC Olive Bright, Pigeoneer (12.29.20)

[A quick note: This book isnโ€™t my usual genre but I won in through Bookish First. Iโ€˜ve always been fascinated by WWII stories, so I knew I would enjoy it. Plus, the premise sounded different from your typical mystery. I mean, pigeons delivering messages?! How cute! Itโ€™s meant to be an ongoing series. I was glad I won this because it pushed me out of my reading zone and I really enjoyed it.]

โ€œ๐ˆ๐ญโ€™๐ฌ ๐ง๐จ๐ญ ๐š๐ญ ๐š๐ฅ๐ฅ ๐Ÿ๐š๐ข๐ซ ๐ญ๐ก๐š๐ญ ๐ฐ๐จ๐ฆ๐ž๐ง ๐š๐ซ๐ž ๐š๐ฅ๐ฐ๐š๐ฒ๐ฌ ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐จ๐ง๐ž๐ฌ ๐ฅ๐ž๐Ÿ๐ญ ๐›๐ž๐ก๐ข๐ง๐...๐›๐ฎ๐ญ ๐ˆ ๐ฅ๐ข๐ค๐ž ๐ญ๐จ ๐ญ๐ก๐ข๐ง๐ค ๐ข๐ญโ€™๐ฌ ๐›๐ž๐œ๐š๐ฎ๐ฌ๐ž ๐ฐ๐ž ๐š๐ซ๐ž ๐ฆ๐จ๐ซ๐ž ๐ฌ๐ญ๐ž๐š๐๐Ÿ๐š๐ฌ๐ญ, ๐ฐ๐ข๐ฅ๐ฅ๐ข๐ง๐  ๐ญ๐จ ๐œ๐š๐ซ๐ซ๐ฒ ๐จ๐ฎ๐ญ ๐š๐ฅ๐ฅ ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐ฅ๐ข๐ญ๐ญ๐ฅ๐ž ๐ฃ๐จ๐›๐ฌ ๐ญ๐ก๐š๐ญ ๐š๐ซ๐ž ๐ž๐ง๐ญ๐ข๐ซ๐ž๐ฅ๐ฒ ๐ง๐ž๐œ๐ž๐ฌ๐ฌ๐š๐ซ๐ฒ ๐›๐ฎ๐ญ ๐ช๐ฎ๐ข๐ญ๐ž ๐›๐ž๐ง๐ž๐š๐ญ๐ก ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐ง๐จ๐ญ๐ข๐œ๐ž ๐จ๐Ÿ ๐ฆ๐จ๐ฌ๐ญ ๐ฆ๐ž๐ง.โ€โ€”Stephanie Graves

Olive Bright is determined to do her part in the war efforts. When a broody Captain Aldridge shows up at her home and enlists her pigeons for a covert mission, she accepts. Suspicions force them to hide their involvement behind a ruse, making those in Pipley believe they are romantically inclined. But itโ€™s quite the opposite. Neither of them get along. Captain Aldridge understands nothing about pigeons, mistrusts Olive, and is determined to hide everything from her. She wonโ€™t stand for it. And then a mysterious murder occurs, and Olive is exactly the person to get to the bottom of it.

Set in WWII England, this was a LOVELY little read. I burned through it in two days. Graves writing is rich and detailed. The historical accuracy, intriguing use of pigeons in the war effort, and romantic chemistry between Olive and Captain Aldridge kept me turning pages at a rapid rate. It as clear that Stephanie Graves did a huge amount of research. Olive was a character ahead of her time, with a drive to contribute to the war efforts. I immediately fell in love with her character. I also loved the portrayal of health disparities from other characters, adding a level of realism and struggle to the pages. And the murder mystery was so fun to solve.

Two main storylines are twined together. The first, with the pigeon war efforts overseen by Olive and her loft of cute pigeons named for literary book characters, which was adorable. And second, the murder mystery taking place in the town of Pipley. Olive was the perfect little investigator. Having grown up in Pipley, she was well acquainted with its inhabitants and able to form her own suspicions. Just enough information was given for me to start forming my own theories as I read. These storylines were woven together beautifully.

My favorite aspect of the story was Olive and Captain Aldridgeโ€™s banter and relationship. I am a romantic at heart, so having some hint of chemistry is a must for my own enjoyment and reading experience. I adored watching the two of them argue and slowly grow to understand each other. The only thing I would have liked to see was a kiss between them at the very end. That left me a little frustrated because I felt it would have tied everything off nicely. But hopefully we will see something from those two in the subsequent books. If so, then count me in!

If you like wartime stories light on actual fighting, historical accuracy, murder mystery, and small town settings, you will LOVE this one. It releases December 29th, 2020. ๐— ๐—ฌ ๐—ฅ๐—”๐—ง๐—œ๐—ก๐—š: ๐Ÿฐ/๐Ÿฑโญ๏ธ

A huge thank you to Bookish First and Kensington Publishing for an advanced reading copy in exchange for my honest opinion.


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