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Barnes & Noble Review: Girl at War

If you grew up in the nineties like me, then you probably are not familiar with the conflict that arose in the Balkan region of Europe during that time period. While I was still counting gel pens and which corduroy overalls to wear to school, the Balkan Peninsula was consumed with smoke and gunpowder. Girl at War is the debut novel by Sara Nović which focuses on Croatia’s bid for independence during the uprising betweens Croats and Serbs. 


It’s 1991 when we meet Ana, a lively ten-year-old living with her parents and her ailing infant sister in Croatia’s capital city, Zagreb. Ana’s a tomboy who, along with her best friend, Luka, has the run of the city. The civic fissures that are the first signs of the political fragmentation of Yugoslavia have begun to affect daily life, and rumors that the Serbs have blocked the roads from Zagreb to the Adriatic prompt Ana’s father to cancel the family’s annual seaside holiday. Instead, Ana and Luka spend their time bicycling through their corner of the city, where escalating tensions between Croats and Serbs become apparent even to the children.”



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