The new novel "Everyone Brave Is Forgiven" examines love, loss and courage. The book begins in 1939 Britain, and it focuses on the intertwining lives of Mary, Alistair and Tom as they navigate brutal World War II.
The author Chris Cleave is a British journalist and writer, and "Everyone Brave Is Forgiven" is his fourth novel. The story interweaves scenes of war in Malta, where Alistair fights after he enlists, with London, where Mary teaches children unable to find shelter in the countryside. While a novel, Cleave exposes the little talked about subject of racism during the war. In some instances, African American families were thrown out of bomb shelters during raids.
The novel is a tribute to Cleave’s grandparents’ experiences during World War II.
“I tried to pick up on the sense of awe that I had in talking to veterans,” said Cleave. “How big, how unimaginable, for someone like me was what they had been through, and I tried to find a register of speech that captured it.”
Cleave will speak more about his “Everyone Brave Is Forgiven” tonight at the Margaret Mitchell House at 7 p.m.