Daughters of the Night Sky

Daughters of the Night Sky

A novel—inspired by the most celebrated regiment in the Red Army—about a woman’s sacrifice, courage, and love in a time of war. Russia, 1941. Katya Ivanova is a young pilot in a far-flung military academy in the Ural Mountains. From childhood, she’s dreamed of taking to the skies to escape her bleak mountain life. With the Nazis on the march across Europe, she is called o...

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Title:Daughters of the Night Sky
Author:Aimie K. Runyan
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Daughters of the Night Sky Reviews

  • Sonja Yoerg

    A lively and stirring tale of the brave vanguard of women pilots fighting for Russia and, as often, for respect from their male counterparts. My heart was in my throat as our heroine, Katya, took to the skies to live her dream and risk her life. As enthralled as I was by this dive into social and military history, it was the humanity of Daughters of the Night Sky that won me over: comrades, lovers, and families swept up and torn apart by war. Runyon delivers a well-paced and heartfelt story that

    A lively and stirring tale of the brave vanguard of women pilots fighting for Russia and, as often, for respect from their male counterparts. My heart was in my throat as our heroine, Katya, took to the skies to live her dream and risk her life. As enthralled as I was by this dive into social and military history, it was the humanity of Daughters of the Night Sky that won me over: comrades, lovers, and families swept up and torn apart by war. Runyon delivers a well-paced and heartfelt story that fans of WW II novels should not miss.

  • Tammy

    I received an advanced copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

    Historical fiction at it's finest! Daughters of the Night Sky has all the things I love...history and strong women overcoming adversity. I was instantly drawn into Katya's story as she found love and fought to become a night bomber. I raced through the book but didn't want it to end!

  • Aura

    I received an advanced copy from Netgalley of this historical novel set in World War II Russia. I enjoyed this great novel about Russian women trained as pilots by Stalin to help defeat the Nazis. This novel is a timely novel in that women serving in the military today around the world perhaps do not get the same credit as their male counterpart. This novel was a reminder of some of the struggles these pioneer women endured and a testament to their courage and dedication. Katya is a likely hero,

    I received an advanced copy from Netgalley of this historical novel set in World War II Russia. I enjoyed this great novel about Russian women trained as pilots by Stalin to help defeat the Nazis. This novel is a timely novel in that women serving in the military today around the world perhaps do not get the same credit as their male counterpart. This novel was a reminder of some of the struggles these pioneer women endured and a testament to their courage and dedication. Katya is a likely hero, beautiful, strong and faithful to her cause, friends and loved ones. I really enjoyed this novel and recommend it to all historical fiction readers. I have one small criticism. Even though it is a pretty cover, I did not find it appealing.

  • Theresa Alan

    Runyan has a gift for writing historical fiction about strong women that aren’t taught about in history class. In Daughters of the Night Sky, we learn about women who become pilots in the Red Army under Stalin in World War Two. I never knew that Stalin essentially advocated for something like equal rights for woman. They still faced discrimination and the dismissive attitudes of men, and they were not required to fight. They could return home at any time, unlike the men. Also, they had to be bet

    Runyan has a gift for writing historical fiction about strong women that aren’t taught about in history class. In Daughters of the Night Sky, we learn about women who become pilots in the Red Army under Stalin in World War Two. I never knew that Stalin essentially advocated for something like equal rights for woman. They still faced discrimination and the dismissive attitudes of men, and they were not required to fight. They could return home at any time, unlike the men. Also, they had to be better than their male counterparts. They had to be flawless.

    Through the point of view of Katya, we learn about how the women of the Red Army faced danger not only from enemy gunfire, but also sometimes from male soldiers they were supposed to be fighting alongside.

    Runyan did a great job with research on what it was like to be a pilot during that era. You really feel like you’re in the cockpit with those women, facing uncertainty not just about your own life, but about everyone you care about and even strangers. Fans of historical fiction will definitely want to add this to their to-be-read list. RELEASES JANUARY 1, 2018.

    Thanks to NetGalley and Lake Union for the opportunity to review an advanced copy of this book.

    For more of my reviews, please visit:

  • Erin

    Find this and other reviews at:

    Daughters of the Night Sky marks my third experience with author Aimie K.Runyan and represents a significant shift in the scope of her storytelling. Inspired by the real-life exploits of the female aviators of the Soviet Air Forces, the novel explores the experience of the Night Witches through the eyes of a young woman facing the dramatic realities of a world at war.

    Before I get too far ahead of myself, I want to note my ad

    Find this and other reviews at:

    Daughters of the Night Sky marks my third experience with author Aimie K.Runyan and represents a significant shift in the scope of her storytelling. Inspired by the real-life exploits of the female aviators of the Soviet Air Forces, the novel explores the experience of the Night Witches through the eyes of a young woman facing the dramatic realities of a world at war.

    Before I get too far ahead of myself, I want to note my admiration for Runyan’s gentle handling of the material. It’d have been easy to stereotype the Night Witches as a group of gung-ho feminists hell-bent on defying the patriarchy, but Runyan took obvious care to illustrate diversity within the ranks. Her characters are passionate, patriotic, and driven, but they are also emotional and exhibit a variety of traditionally feminine attributes and I loved the context and authenticity that lent her fiction.

    Katya enjoys a romantic relationship with Vanya over the course of the story and while the plot line is a central component of the narrative, I was pleased to see that Runyan never allowed it to define her heroine. This actually became quite important to me as the novel progressed as I feared the love story would eventually overshadow Katya’s personal ambition, but my concern was ultimately unwarranted and I found great appreciation for how Runyan used Katya’s love life to round-out and balance her character.

    Personally, I’d have loved to see more technical details in the fabric of the narrative, but that’s just me. Politically speaking, the novel is easy to follow which makes it ideal for those unfamiliar with the history and I felt the story itself a lovely compliment to the spirit of the women who inspired it.

    Recommended to fans of war-era fiction, particularly those who enjoyed The Beauty Shop.

  • boogenhagen

    Really well done book about the lady pilots of the USSR during WWII and to my even greater delight, it comes complete with a well earned HEA.

  • RoseMary Achey

    Author Runyan presents an aspect of WWII not extensively covered in other historical fiction dealing with the same time period. Female Russian Pilots are the focus of her new novel

    .

    I truly enjoyed this book and have thought about the story several times since the final page. Stalin and the Russian military were far more open to women pilots than their American counterparts. Reviewers have criticized the writing as not highly sophisticated and at times I share their th

    Author Runyan presents an aspect of WWII not extensively covered in other historical fiction dealing with the same time period. Female Russian Pilots are the focus of her new novel

    .

    I truly enjoyed this book and have thought about the story several times since the final page. Stalin and the Russian military were far more open to women pilots than their American counterparts. Reviewers have criticized the writing as not highly sophisticated and at times I share their thoughts. However, the story was extremely engaging and only after a short time I had an affinity for the various characters and personalities.

  • Erin

    3.5 stars

    I chose this 10% because of the story and 90% because of the Audio narrator( see

    and

    ) Yes, Kathleen Gati is my easy recommendation if you've never experienced an Audiobook before.

    Second, I love historical fiction and

    is a World War II period novel that tells the true story of the Soviet Red Army 's 588th Night Bomber Regiment that saw Russian Women join combat as

    3.5 stars

    I chose this 10% because of the story and 90% because of the Audio narrator( see

    and

    ) Yes, Kathleen Gati is my easy recommendation if you've never experienced an Audiobook before.

    Second, I love historical fiction and

    is a World War II period novel that tells the true story of the Soviet Red Army 's 588th Night Bomber Regiment that saw Russian Women join combat as fighter pilots. These women were so feared by the German Army that they were referred to as "Night Witches" and any German that was able to shoot them down was automatically awarded the Iron Cross. Never having read any thing about these courageous and fascinating women before, I was very eager to give this book a try.

    Our main protagonist, Katya Ivanova, has dreamt since a child of doing something different and dreams of taking to the skies. Fast forward to the 1940's and as the war erupts throughout Europe, Katya is training to be a pilot. It is there at the military academy, Katya catches the eye of a young Soviet soldier and soon they are married. However, the young couple has no time to enjoy married life before Comrade Stalin announces the invasion of Germany into Mother Russia.

    My thoughts: I loved every scene between Katya and her fellow pilots as they dealt with combat and the results of war on the civilians they protect and the loss of fellow pilots. On the other hand, I was REALLY lukewarm over the romance portions of the book. Katya's husband served more as a distraction from the war and at times, I was tempted to fast forward through their long love scenes. But that's only my opinion!

    I would highly recommend

    to other WWII fiction readers especially those who desire to see strong female protagonists.

  • Lyuda

    This passage ^^ among some similar ones, is why I not only had to dnf the “historical” fiction book but to rate it and I normally try not to rate books which I dnf'ed early on.

    This passage would not only expel the person from flying schoo

    This passage ^^ among some similar ones, is why I not only had to dnf the “historical” fiction book but to rate it and I normally try not to rate books which I dnf'ed early on.

    This passage would not only expel the person from flying school in 1941 USSR but get her straight to the Gulag. I understand taking liberty with history when writing historical fiction, but this and other similar passages is called 'taking artistic license too far', having no idea what kind of society 1930-1940 USSR was. I’ve been raised there. I was lucky to be born long after these times. I had it relatively easy in comparison to the stories I heard from people living through these times -the stories of NKVD coming at night for the university professor whose “betrayal” was to use a newspaper with Stalin’s face printed on it to wrap a piece of fish he bought on the market, of another one who told a lighthearted joke about a Communist Party member to their students, of factory worker who questioned some fictitious numbers of “the five-year plan”, and I can go on and on… The commonality among them? All these people ended up in the Siberian Gulag. Yes, these are the anecdotal stories from people I knew personally, but there are so much material out there that there is no excuse to get the history part so very wrong.

    I went straight to the Author’s note and got my explanation and more:

    One doesn’t have to be an expert on all these things but if one wants to write a historical fiction book, one has to at least read some history books, some memoirs of people who lived through these times to really understand the power of propaganda, the idealism of some, the evil of others, the sacrifices people made to know how unbelievable this from the heroine sounded:

    And I had a confirmation of my decision to dnf this book early on after reading this from the Author’s note:

    Oh, I don’t even want to know what it is….

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