Monday, March 22, 2021

The Ack Ack Girl

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions

Chris Karlsen will be awarding a $20 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

See below or Click on "read more" to sign up for the Giveaway.  

Love and War
A country under attack and the story of one woman’s fight to protect England and her heart.

1941. The German war machine has crushed all of Europe-only England holds fast. To force a surrender, the German Luftwaffe bombs cities and villages the length of the country. As the battle rages, Britain is in desperate need to put more pilots in the air.
To free up more men a new unit is formed: The Ack Ack Girls. These special teams of courageous women will now fight in the anti-aircraft stations. Determined to be part of the effort, Ava Armstrong, volunteers for one of the special teams.
Her unit just happens to be located near an RAF airfield teaming with pilots. Sparks fly, and not just from artillery, when Ava crosses paths with Chris Fairfield, a handsome and cocky pilot stationed there. But nothing is easy in time of war, not even love.

my review...

I grew up with parents who lived and fought through WW II. Every bit of the history of that time has always been of interest to me.  But I’d sure never heard of the Ack Ack Girls. Even the title intrigued me. The Ack Ack Girls were a part of the Auxiliary Territorial Service. A part of the organization that helped operate Anti-Aircraft guns for Britain. Not in the form of shooting the gun but in many very important and dangerous ways. Some were called spotters. They used binoculars to find enemy planes. Some were in range-finder teams who calculated the distance a gun shell needed to travel to hit the target, and some were in predictor teams who worked out the length of the fuse necessary to ensure the shell exploded at the right height.

 This book  is fiction or a better genre definition might be historical fiction. But there is so much history here. I kept “googling” each item or event to read more about it. The time periods are correct, many of the events right on. It’s true there is more interest, a love story, descriptions of fictional characters experiencing war. I was aware of all this. Aware that it was a wonderfully written fiction book but…I still felt myself living in the true story of WWII. Takes pretty tense, emotional writing to make the reader forget where they are.

Chris Karlsen has many books published all have good reviews. 

Check it out here.

read an excerpt...

When her mother turned around, the color had drained from her face and her eyes had a haunted look. “What is it, Mum?”

 “They’re bombing Coventry. There’s a BBC reporter on site. He said dozens and dozens of planes are over the city.” 

Ava sat on the sofa, listening to the live broadcast as the nightmare continued. Her stomach roiled. The mint-flavored tooth powder she’d used had tasted sweet and fresh, but now soured in her mouth. 

“The cathedral is destroyed,” the reporter’s voice broke.

“Turn the sound up, Mum.”

“The sky is black with planes now. They’ve blotted out the moon.” The reporter broke into a coughing fit and then continued. “The city is aflame. It’s raining bombs. The terribleness of this night will never be forgotten. Coventry is no more.”

Eleven hours later

“Did you get any sleep?” her mother asked.

Ava shook her head. “The bombing only just stopped. They’re saying that most of the city is destroyed.”

Ava went upstairs to clean up and change clothes. When she came back down she told her mother, “I need to go. I have to see if Miss Finney is all right. I have to see if I still have a home there.”

Coventry-later that day

The train was standing room only. A blast of intense heat clobbered her as Ava stepped from the station. She found herself flashing back to the night of the blitz attack in London. Like London, hours after the last bombs fell flames still raged and painted the sky in orange and red here. Bright, hot embers filled the air, burning holes through the material of the umbrellas of those who carried them for protection.

She slowly and carefully made her way toward Miss Finney’s flat and the upstairs bedsit she let to Ava. She paused in front of the movie theatre around the corner from Miss Finney’s. The entire building had fallen but somehow the marquee remained undamaged. Perched on top of the rubble advertising, His Girl Friday. Ava had just seen the movie the previous week. She’d gone two nights in a row just to watch Cary Grant. 

about Chris Karlsen...

I was raised in Chicago. My father, a history professor, and my mother, a voracious reader passed on a love of history and books along with a love of travel. My husband and I retired to the Pacific Northwest where we live with four crazy rescue dogs.  

I am a retired police detective. After twenty-five years in law enforcement, I decided to pursue my dream of writing. I’ve completed a historical-time travel romance series called Knights in Time. I currently write a historical suspense called The Bloodstone Series.

I am also working on a world war two series of novella romances. The first is Moonlight Serenade and currently available. The second is The Ack-Ack Girl.

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  1. I want to thank Our Town Book Reviews for the great review and the opportunity to feature my story. I have always felt a sense of romance during the 1940's in the movies like Casablanca and Waterloo Bridge. I'd love to know what era(s) your followers find especially romantic.
    Chris Karlsen

  2. Replies
    1. It is and much appreciated. For another excerpt you can email me or visit my website:

  3. It was a terrific review and I am thrilled that the book was so well enjoyed. For another excerpt you can email me or visit my website:

  4. Thank you, Victoria and Sherry.

  5. The excerpt has me wanting more! sounds awesome.


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