Reads for Fans of the PBS series “World on Fire”

Love World on Fire on PBS? World on Fire is an adrenalized, emotionally gripping and resonant World War II drama that follows the intertwining fates of ordinary people in five countries as they grapple with the effects of the war on their everyday lives. 


All of the titles featured here in this booklist we have in our collection or are available via SWAN! To see if an item is available to check out or to place a hold, click on the cover image or button to the right of the description.

The Only Woman in the Room

by Marie Benedict

Marie Benedict’s novel tells the incredible true story of actress and inventor Austrian born Hedy Lamarr. Leaving an abusive husband in 1937 she fled to Paris and then the United States where she became an acclaimed film actress and inventor of a revolutionary radio guidance system.

Resistance Women

by Jennifer Chiaverini

Resistance Women tells the true story of Mildred Fish-Harnack, who after marrying a German economist, moved to Germany in 1929.  Not willing to be bystanders to the actions of the Nazi party, Mildred and her husband create the Red Orchestra, a group determined to bring down Hitler’s regime from within.

Everyone Brave is Forgiven

by Chris Cleave

This war drama, loosely based on Cleave’s grandparents’ story of love and conflicting loyalties, tells the story of three friends Mary, Tom and Alistair living in London during the Blitz.

The Ragged Edge of Night

by Olivia Hawker

This powerful story of a Franciscan friar, turned husband, turned resistance leader is an emotionally gripping, beautifully written historical novel about hope, redemption, and one man’s search for light during the darkest times of World War II.

We Were the Lucky Ones

by Georgia Hunter

Based on an inspiring true story, this novel follows the saga of the Kurc family during World War II. Three generations are torn from their home in the wake of the Nazi invasion and they, despite overwhelming hardships, will stop at nothing to be reunited.

The Lost Girls of Paris

by Pam Jenoff

When Grace Healey finds an abandoned suitcase in Grand Central Station containing the photos of twelve female secret agents during the war, she becomes obsessed with learning their stories and fates.

The Tattooist of Auschwitz

by Heather Morris

Based on the true story of the Auschwitz-Birkenau survivor, Slovakian Jew Lale Sokolov.  Fluent in several languages, Lale is made the infamous camp’s tattooist, a position he uses to aid his fellow prisoners. He finds love and vows to survive the horrific conditions of the camp.

The Huntress

by Kate Quinn

In this exciting story, brave Russian bomber pilot Nina Markova and British journalist Ian Graham unite to track down The Huntress one of the most vicious murderers in the Nazi party.

Beneath a Scarlet Sky

by Mark Sullivan

Despite Italian teenager Pino Lella’s intention to never become involved in war, he is drawn in after the destruction of his home in Milan. Beginning by assisting Jewish refugees escape through the Alps, Pino is later forced to enlist in the German army and soon takes on the dangerous mission of smuggling information to the Allies.

Want more recommendations?


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