Land Beneath Us (Sunrise at Normandy)

Written by Sarah Sundin
Review by Fiona Alison

This last in the Sunrise at Normandy trilogy begins with Private Clay Paxton training as a Ranger at Camp Forrest, Tennessee, in 1943. When he happens upon Leah Jones being brutally attacked by an unknown assailant, he carries her to hospital, visits her often, and subsequently marries her to save her from scandal. Shortly to be shipped overseas, he has frequently recurring dreams which spell his death on the battlefield, and which he has come to terms with. He assumes he will die and Leah will have his army pay to get her on her feet. With letters back and forth, the couple gradually falls in love, but from afar and without the other’s awareness.

Notwithstanding that this is an inspirational novel, the first part of this book is so dependent on faith in God that the self-determination of the characters is often interrupted and becomes somewhat repetitive. This slows the narrative, and my interest in the characters waned. However, the pace picks up once the Rangers embark on their D-Day mission. More backstory is needed to understand Clay’s motivations, so I would recommend beginning with The Sea Before Us. Well researched with a delightful reunion at the conclusion, this book is sure to be a hit with Sundin’s fans.