Resistance – Owen Sheers

Set towards the end of WWII, this is an alternative history. This story is written as though the Germans did in fact invade England, and opens with the disappearance of all the men in a particular farming community in Wales. The wives are left with no trace of their men and facing a Nazi occupation alone.

I was quite fascinated with the concept of this story, especially after reading Five Days In London which was a micro-history of May 1940, a period when the possibility of a German invasion was all to real. At that time there really were resistance unit set up amongst the men of the farming communities. Their brief (explained by Owen Sheers in his afterword) was that they would probably be active in resistance against the German invasion for a period of only 14 days. Not much of a life expectancy.

The author threads these historical facts throughout his story. It is quite a shocking thought really to imagine how different history could have been.

I liked this book, and enjoyed the idea of an alternate history.The plot was based around the women left behind, how they handled the invasion, and the relationships that developed between them and a patrol of German soldiers who end up living in the valley with them. The ending not a tidy as I’d have liked, although not as bad as it seemed the last few chapters were heading.


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