Friday, June 21, 2019

Book Review with a Giveaway: The Medallion by Cathy Gohlke

About the Book

Book: The Medallion
Author: Cathy Gohlke
Genre: Historical Fiction (World War II)
Release date: June 4, 2019

For fans of bestselling World War II fiction like Sarah’s Key and The Nightingale comes an illuminating tale of courage, sacrifice, and survival, about two couples whose lives are ravaged by Hitler’s mad war yet eventually redeemed through the fate of one little girl.

Seemingly overnight, the German blitzkrieg of Warsaw in 1939 turns its streets to a war zone and shatters the life of each citizen—Polish, Jewish, or otherwise. Sophie Kumiega, a British bride working in the city’s library, awaits news of her husband, Janek, recently deployed with the Polish Air Force. Though Sophie is determined that she and the baby in her womb will stay safe, the days ahead will draw her into the plight of those around her, compelling her to help, whatever the danger.

Rosa and Itzhak Dunovich never imagined they would welcome their longed-for first child in the Jewish ghetto, or that they would let anything tear their family apart. But as daily atrocities intensify, Rosa soon faces a terrifying reality: to save their daughter’s life, she must send her into hiding. Her only hope of finding her after the war—if any of them survive—is a medallion she cuts in half and places around her neck.

Inspired by true events of Poland’s darkest days and brightest heroes, The Medallion paints a stunning portrait of war and its aftermath, daring us to believe that when all seems lost, God can make a way forward.

Click here to purchase your copy.

My Review

Read.  This.  Book.

The horrors, atrocities, and crimes against humanity that took place during World War II were so accurately described, that I wanted to weep several times as I read this book.  I would think about it as I went to sleep, during my dreams, then again as I woke up each morning.  THAT is a good story.

What I loved about this book was that the characters persevered.  Nothing was easy then, and average citizens were victims of the circumstances of the time.  But they pressed on, with encouragement from Scripture:  He will "make a way, when there seems to be no way."

What I didn't like was the pure evil that propelled the Nazis to mistreat the Jews and many other people groups.  But Gohlke handled that tactfully, and I commend her for that.  

This is not an easy book to read because of the subject matter, but it was very readable, and I got through it fairly quickly.

Every adult should read this book.  Yes, it is fiction, but the events and people surrounding those fictional characters were real.  Those with a special interest in World War II will especially appreciate the research that went into this novel.  5 stars.

Read this book, because we need not to forget what happened to fellow humans at the hands of other fellow humans.

I received an e-ARC of this book from the publisher, Tyndale House, through Celebrate Lit, for review purposes.  The thoughts expressed here are my own.

About the Author

Three-time Christy and two-time Carol and INSPY Award–winning and bestselling author Cathy Gohlke writes novels steeped with inspirational lessons, speaking of world and life events through the lens of history. She champions the battle against oppression, celebrating the freedom found only in Christ. Cathy has worked as a school librarian, drama director, and director of children’s and education ministries. When not traveling to historic sites for research, she, her husband, and their dog, Reilly, divide their time between northern Virginia and the Jersey Shore, enjoying time with their grown children and grandchildren. Visit her website at and find her on Facebook at CathyGohlkeBooks.

More from Cathy

Every story begins with a journey. Sharing that journey is twice the joy.

The Medallion was inspired by two true stories—the first was the WWII account of Itzhak Dugin and his Jewish family, persecuted in Lithuania. Their heart-wrenching story made world news when the tunnel from which Itzhak escaped the Nazis was discovered using modern technology.

The second was the story of Irena Sendler, a Polish Catholic social worker within ┼╗egota (an underground Polish Council to Aid Jews), who developed a network to rescue children. Despite terrible risks, they smuggled 2500 Jewish children from the Warsaw Ghetto and certain death at the hands of the Nazis, then hid them in Polish homes, convents, churches and hospitals until the end of the war. Approximately 2,000 of those children were found after the war. Theories abound regarding the whereabouts of those missing. I couldn’t help but wonder, and imagine: What became of those 400 to 500 missing children? What became of one?

Set in WWII Poland and post-war England, The Medallion is a story of courage, sacrifice, love, forgiveness and redemption.

Blog Stops

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, June 22
Christian Bookaholic, June 22
Carla Loves To Read, June 22
The Power of Words, June 23
Where Crisis & Christ Collide, June 23
Mary Hake, June 23
janicesbookreviews, June 23
Where Faith and Books Meet, June 24
By The Book, June 24
For Him and My Family, June 24
A Reader’s Brain, June 24
All-of-a-kind Mom, June 25
Through the Fire Blogs, June 25
Retrospective Spines, June 25
Inklings and notions, June 25
Remembrancy, June 26
Lis Loves Reading , June 26
The Becca Files, June 26
Genesis 5020, June 27
Reader’s Cozy Corner, June 27
Connect in Fiction, June 27
Bigreadersite, June 28
Maureen’s Musings, June 28
Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, June 28
Blossoms and Blessings, June 29
For the Love of Literature, June 29
Spoken from the Heart, June 29
Inspired by fiction, June 30
Have A Wonderful Day, June 30
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, June 30
Inspiration Clothesline, July 1
Connie’s History Classroom, July 1
Simple Harvest Reads, July 1 (Guest Post from Mindy Houng)
Just the Write Escape, July 2
Seasons of Opportunities, July 2
Pause for Tales, July 2
As He Leads is Joy, July 3
To Everything A Season, July 3
Hallie Reads, July 3
A Good Book and Cup of Tea, July 4
Locks, Hooks and Books, July 4
For The Love of Books, July 4
Emily Yager, July 5
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 5
Texas Book-aholic, July 5


To celebrate her tour, Cathy is giving away a grand prize of a $25 Amazon gift card and a copy of the book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.


  1. It has been great hearing about your book and although I am not the reader myself, my 2 sisters and 2 daughters are. They love hearing about the genre's they like and me helping them get to find books they will enjoy. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Thanks for the review & giveaway!

  3. I can’t wait to get this book!

  4. Sounds like a must read! Thank you for being part of the tour.

  5. I have a friend who majored in Holocaust Studies in college. I can't imagine having to study all of that.....would be so sad!

  6. This sounds like an amazing read. I love the cover art.