It's an unlikely word to describe a WWII novel, but this book is really beautiful. It is, on the whole, comparatively slow paced and the romance gently unfolds while not a lot actually happens, but then, suddenly, the violence of war interveens and these episodes are genuinely shocking. A wellington bomber crashlands in France after a bombing raid to italy. The crew survive, but the pilot suffers a serious injury to on arm, losing a lot of blood. They proceed on foot and discover a farmhouse, whose occupants take them in. they are distinctly segregated from the inhabitants initially, but slowly the crew leave to try and escape to Blighty, leaving just the pilot in the farmhouse. He begins to integrate into the family, and they spend considerable effort trying to protect him from the truth of events in the village. the ending is, in one sense, a culmination of events that you can see building from a distance off, however, the final chapter is utterly shocking and completely unexpected. It is moving and could be profoundly depressing, but it isn't, and you remain sure that love will come through.