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My Name Is Eva

You Can Pay a Terrible Price for Keeping a Promise
Narrated by: Diana Croft
Length: 9 hrs and 16 mins
Categories: Fiction, Historical
4.5 out of 5 stars (27 ratings)

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Summary

You can pay a terrible price for keeping a promise....

Evelyn Taylor-Clarke sits in her chair at Forest Lawns Care Home in the heart of the English countryside, surrounded by residents with minds not as sharp as hers. It would be easy to dismiss Evelyn as a muddled old woman, but her lipstick is applied perfectly and her buttons done up correctly. Because, Evelyn is a woman with secrets, and Evelyn remembers everything. She can never forget the promise she made to the love of her life to discover the truth about the mission that led to his death, no matter what it cost her.

When Evelyn’s niece Pat opens an old biscuit tin to find a photo of a small girl with a red ball entitled "Liese, 1951" and a passport in another name, she has some questions for her aunt. And Evelyn is transported back to a place in Germany known as "The Forbidden Village", where a woman who called herself Eva went where no one else dared, amongst shivering prisoners, to find the man who gambled with her husband’s life.

A gripping, haunting and compelling story about love, courage, and betrayal set in the war-battered landscape of Germany. Fans of The Letter, The Alice Network, and The Nightingale will be hooked. 

©2019 Suzanne Goldring (P)2019 Bookouture

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A real heartbreaker

This isn't my usual type of read, mainly because war stories make me ugly cry.

Sure, there were moments that I teared up (a few of them, tbh) but I was surprised by how much I enjoyed the story. It did cover some of the horrors of the second world war and also a pretty graphic sexual assault, so be warned, but there was also a lot of kindness, mischief and overwhelming goodness to be found in the actions of some of the characters.

Evelyn is now elderly and living in a care home, mugging off her uncaring and harsh niece at every available opportunity. While she's there, she reflects on her past and her work during and after the war - she has plenty of secrets that she hasn't shared with anyone and it's only through her letters to her deceased husband that we get a clear picture of what happened.

She's a formidably strong character, growing from a naive and sweetly silly young woman to something of a badass, before time takes hold of her and she becomes frail and needs medical care. I love that she never once gives up on her integrity, she never once gives up on her love for her husband who was killed during the war and almost every step she takes in life is taken to honour his memory in some way.

The ending was incredibly satisfying and remained true to the character, I couldn't have asked for anything better!

The audiobook version of this book really is the only way to go if you have a choice, Croft nails all the voices and manages to represent Evelyn perfectly through all the different stages of her life as well as all the other characters. A story with this much heart needs a talented narrator and it definitely got it.

The writing style is elegant and enrapturing, I loved every single second of the book and genuinely wished that Eva was someone I could meet in real life - someone bold, clever, mischevous and above all... not afraid to drink a shot of moonshine when the situation calls for it.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars

Different facets

Every chapter was different Present day elderly lady playing dementia with secrets from the war Love letters beyond the grave Secrets from her war story The war story should have featured more in my humble opinion Narration was just ok

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Completely unexpected

This book was brilliant and I couldn’t stop listening. Not at all what I expected and not my usual kind of book. Fabulously narrated too.

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Brilliant

Slow start and wondering where it was going but then it started to make sense. Couldn’t stop listening and found it very gripping as pieces of the puzzle started forming.
It made me wonder if this story was true and whether this tactic had been used before with SOE during the war.
Highly recommended

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Profile Image for Roberta H. de Regt
  • Roberta H. de Regt
  • 01-11-19

Disappointing in every way

I kept hoping that it was leading to some major surprise and it would have a "good ending." Instead, I found several characters were really despicable, most especially including her niece who stood to inherit. Clearly, the author is familiar with the behavior of someone experiencing dementia which gave me one thing to appreciate about the main character in this story. For me as a reader though, I am sorry that I hung in there. It was far too late in the story as (what appeared to be that) the author finally just got tired of her convoluted "story," and just ended it. Not with a bang but with a whimper.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Chris Michael
  • 09-10-19

different

the author is a little long winded at time but it was a fresh story

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for DeRoseBreathe
  • DeRoseBreathe
  • 28-09-19

Funny, crazy, post WW2 UK/Germany, silly, spy, wisegal, murder & love

All in one story! This was totally a change of pace for a WW2/post war story compared to all others. Completely not what I expected. But so unique and entertaining! I could see this done as a play actually. It’s got that type of humor.
I love how she “acts “ old/senile” to get away with her stuff. I won’t spoil it. The all of a sudden rape though was rather a surprise and really out of place for the overall story. Not needed. But I like how she handled it.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Beauhanks
  • 02-10-19

The worst, simpering, stupid, ridiculous.

I think I need a refund. I actually listened to the end to see if the plot earned the bother and it did not. Her "letters" to her dead husband were treacle. Eva is simultaneously helpless and rash. The plot has her doing something pointless, just because, when there are a dozen alternatives. Tiresome. And the narrator seems to have a Babwa Wawa speech defect.
Please do not listen to this audio book. I don't even know WHAT promise Eva was supposed to keep.
Did I miss something?
Or did I just not care?

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • fletpa2@msn.com
  • 22-09-19

A great listen!

A fantastic read. I really enjoyed the book. The reader was so good, it sounded like a play as she changed her voice to accommodate the character. It had everything in it, humor, sadness, mystery. You will really enjoy this book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Alexandra Mongillo
  • 14-01-20

A Must Read Book

Best book I have read and enjoyed in a long time. if i could give it more than 5 stars , i would

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Profile Image for Nancy Moore
  • Nancy Moore
  • 31-12-19

Brillant

I loved it. Kiss kiss kiss. Goodnight, I love you.
Well thought out and executed.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 28-12-19

Decent story

Interesting story, but dates jumped around almost a little too much to follow at times.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Sheila
  • 01-12-19

Thiis book is a must read

I feel that I should give praise where praise is due. If you enjoyed Water for Elephants then you should read my Name is Eva. It's a wonderful story and Eva, even at the age of 90, is someone to be admired for her performance. The narrator did an excellent job Well worth reading.