Rachel’s Legacy is a book about WWII. And though I always hate books, movies, museums and other things related to the war – or any war for that matter – I still finished the whole book.

I always find war-related things so infuriating, unbelievable and heart-breaking. I don’t understand it. So I rather read happy, cute, romance stories.

But Rachel’s Legacy by Julie Thomas was one of the free books I got, so I had to read it. And it was not bad. Here is the synopsis from Goodreads:

When Dr Kobi Voight is given a set of old letters by his mother he has no inkling that they will lead him around the world and deep into the tragic past of his family. Within the letters lie the reflections of a young Jewish woman, forced to give up her baby daughter while fighting with the Resistance in Berlin.
Who is the author, known only as ‘Ruby’, and what became of her child? As he explores Berlin and visits its war memorials and museums, an astonished Kobi begins to realise he is part of the story, too. From the Holocaust to the present day, across continents and oceans, Kobi’s journey will ultimately lead him to the truth about his family’s past – and his own identity.

Rachel’s Legacy’s: Positives and negatives

The negatives

As always, I begin with the negatives. I actually already mentioned the one big thing I didn’t like and that’s the war background.

Another negative point is that the ending felt a bit rushed. In the beginning the story takes it’s time (not a negative this time!), but the end the viewpoint switches a lot and a lot is happening in a short time. I think the book would be better if it was fifty pages longer so the ending would be better.

Also; the biggest ‘secret’ (I guess you can call it that) is something you can predict within the first 50 or so pages.

Also read: Behind her eyes by Sarah Pinborough

The positives

Rachel is a very young woman, but she is so tough and badass. I really liked that she was a strong female character, though she definitely had her girly things too.

I liked the difference in the time; a part of the story takes place in the here and now and another part in WWII. It’s very dynamic. But still, the things in the present and the things in the war are connected and as the book progresses you get more and more clues to how it’s all just one big story. I liked those little clues throughout, even if I already saw it coming (see in the negatives).

It was a heart-breaking book, obviously because of the war, but because half of it was present-day, it didn’t feel too dark for me.

Final rating of Rachel’s Legacy

Giving that there were no really big surprises and that it was still pretty enjoyable, I gave the book 3 out of 5 stars⭐.

Note: though it is a sequel to “The Keeper of Secrets”, you can read it as a stand-alone book. That’s what I did and I don’t feel like I’ve missed things.

Do you like reading books about the war? Why (not)?