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The War I Finally Won  By  cover art

The War I Finally Won

By: Kimberly Brubaker Bradley
Narrated by: Jayne Entwistle
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Publisher's Summary

Like the classic heroines of Sarah, Plain and Tall and Little Women, Ada conquers the home front as her World War II journey continues in this sequel to the Newbery Honor-winning The War That Saved My Life.

When Ada's clubfoot is surgically fixed at last, she knows for certain that she's not what her mother said she was - damaged, deranged, crippled mentally as well as physically. She's not a daughter anymore, either. What is she?

World War II continues, and Ada and her brother, Jamie, are living with their loving legal guardian, Susan, in a borrowed cottage on the estate of the formidable Lady Thorton - along with Lady Thorton herself and her daughter, Maggie. Life in the crowded cottage is tense enough, and then, quite suddenly, Ruth, a Jewish girl from Germany, moves in. A German? The occupants of the house are horrified. But other impacts of the war become far more frightening. As death creeps closer to their door, life and morality during wartime grow more complex. Who is Ada now? How can she keep fighting? And who will she struggle to save?

Ada's first story, The War That Saved My Life, won a Newbery Honor, the Schneider Family Book Award, and the Josette Frank Award in addition to appearing on multiple best-of-the-year lists. This second marvelous volume continues Ada's powerful, uplifting story.

©2017 Kimberly Brubaker Bradley (P)2017 Listening Library

Critic Reviews

"The poignancy of the story is stunning, as are the author’s wit and eloquence. [Narrator Jayne] Entwistle captures both." (AudioFile)

Stunning.... By turns tough and tender, this novel leavens complex themes with moments of wonder and joy." (The Washington Post)

"Rarely is a children’s book so honest...[and] daring. But there is comfort too, in Ada’s desire to love and grow.... The power of this book is that it describes, slowly and sometimes painfully, that it is possible not just to live through pain, but to live with it.” (The New York Times)

What listeners say about The War I Finally Won

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Fantastic Historic Fiction No Matter Your Age

The combination of Bradley's insightful and sensitive writing and Entwistle's ability to bring these characters to life with her expert narration is nothing short of masterful. This is book two in The War Series, and picks up about five days after where book one finished. It's best to start with book one if you are new to the series. Bradley artfully embeds a recap of highlights from book one into the first few chapters of book two--but do yourself a favor and listen to The War That Saved My Life first--it's really a wonderful story.

Bradley continues to create an amazing WWII homefront story. She is able to truly capture these beautiful characters struggling with living outside their comfort zones and learning the complexities of life, personal responsibility and identity. The story deals in such a positive way with the difficult concepts of loss, fear, and hardship. Further, it deftly explores love, forgiveness and complicated feelings of connection.

While this book is listed in children's fiction, I think the title transcends age and is a must listen for lovers of historic fiction. To me, this is not to be missed. Absolute perfection.

32 people found this helpful

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My new favorite book!

I love this book! I am almost 11 and absolutely love this! My teacher recommended it to and I am so glad she did!

9 people found this helpful

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Outstanding!

I am a therapist by trade. The author clearly has a keen understanding of trauma, attachment and healing, plus she winds it into a wonderful story! I adored both of the books Ms. Bradley has written.

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Just Like Comfort Food!

I enjoyed the first book in this series (The War That Saved My Life) immensely, which you can see from my earlier review. You really need to read that book first. But after you do, you will definitely want to continue on to see how Ada's life progresses in this current book.

As a reminder, Ada was a young girl living in pre-WW2 London. She was severely mistreated by her mother due to her clubfoot and escaped with her younger brother, Jamie, to the countryside when London children were being evacuated for safety reasons. There, the two children serendipitously fell into the hands of loving caretaker, Susan, where Ada's needs were met for perhaps the first time in her life and Jamie thrived, as well.

Starting this book, you may be wondering if the children's mother returns to claim them, if Ada's foot is fixable, if the children can remain with Susan, how the continuing and worsening war affects everyone, is the 'benefactor' Mrs. Thorton a negative or positive factor, who is the German girl, Ruth, (a spy??) and why ever is she in the Thorton home, and so on! If you loved book one as I did, this is a must read. If you haven't read book one, you are in for a special treat with both books.

These two books are alot like comfort food. Adding to the pleasure is a wonderful narration by Jane Entwistle. I am inspired to look for more books by the author, Brubaker Bradley and the narrator. This is what I LOVE about audiobooks!

6 people found this helpful

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Man!!! I LOVE This Series!!!!


Though these stories are written for a younger audience – this adult loves every minute. I hope Bradley keeps this series going long after the war is over.

The author does a superb job giving just enough back story to the previous series readers and first in the series. This book easily stand on its own - though you WILL be looking for the other one too. I highly recommend this if you are looking for a fast past uncomplicated read, with just the right amount of characters, that at times will keep you on the edge of your seat. Also, if you’re looking for a shared read that has no uncomfortable embarrassing sections.

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This is a must for all ages!

The War I finally won is a fantastic book for all ages. It is the conclusion of The War that Saved My Life, so I would highly recommend reading that book first to fully understand the story, since it picks up where book one left off.

Ada, Susan and Jamie somehow survived their trip to London and now is the perfect time for Ada to have her surgery to fix her club foot. But now that it is fixed, she is left wondering who she is? Where does she fit into the world she is now living in and how will she manage to see beyond what she has always been told.

With their home having been destroyed, Susan, Jamie and Ada move into a cottage on the Thorton's estate. World War II is in full swing and the ramifications are reaching everyone. Suddenly, Ada finds herself forced to live with Lady Thorton, her daughter Maggie and Ruth. Ruth is a German whom no one in the house trusts because how could they, she could be a spy.

Will Ada give up on life and fail due to her circumstances, or will she persevere and survive it all?

I must admit. I have four children ranging in ages from 11 to 4. As we listened to this audio book, my kids would beg me to drive further, take them on drives or stay in the car longer once we parked to find out what would happen next. Each of my children as well as myself were completely engaged with this story, as well as talking about it long after we finished. Jayne Entwistle brought this story to life with her talent as a narrator. I would highly recommend this to all. The entire story is one that everyone should read (books 1 & 2).

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excellent sequel!

this was an accidentally written sequel to the first book. I recommend it to anyone who enjoyed the first book as it continues the story of Ada and her life.

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Great

I love this book it is a powerful story
With a great subject
I love it!!

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I didn’t want it to end...

I enjoyed this just as much as the first book. I grew to love the characters as if they were my own family. One thing I kept thinking as I listened was that the dialogue and action were so real. Many times when I read a book, I think to myself, “I would never say or do that.“ But in this book, I found that I would speak the line out loud before it was even read! This made it so much more engaging. I also loved Jayne Entwistle as the narrator and will search for other books read by her. I wish there was a third book in this series!

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Even better than the first book

This is the second time listening to The War I Finally Won and it was even better the second time. I loved The War That Saved My Life and I think this sequel is even better. So well written. Great for kids and adults alike. Wonderful narration as well.

2 people found this helpful