The Songs We Hide by Connie Hampton Connally

Serene Beauty

The Songs We Hide by Connie Hampton Connally is a powerful, heart wrenching historical novel that I read mainly in one sitting.

The novel is set in Hungary in 1951. It is a time of great heartache and difficulty. Communism, under Stalin, had taken over the country following the second World War.

Farming is now organized into collectives. Those who did not join were heavily penalized. There was much cruelty. Just as in Ukraine during the 1920’s, people are killed, persecuted or just disappear.

Life is equally hard in towns. People inform on others. People who are loyal to the state are rewarded. People who are not, are punished.

Throughout the novel, there is the air of fear. No one must openly criticize the state, not even children.

We see the power of music. Music can lift us from our circumstances and transport us to happier times. It raises our spirits.

There is much loss within the tale. Some of it is natural, but much is state-induced.

We see there are those who share what little they have with others – material goods, time or encouragement. There are still good hearts in dark times.

All the characters were well drawn and realistic. The author has clearly thoroughly researched a dark time period, and constructed a powerful novel.

Although it was a harsh regime and a time of unbelievable cruelty, the novel has a quiet, ethereal beauty to it. The songs hang over the story, giving an air of calm and a feeling of serenity. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

I received a free copy from the author. A favourable review was not required. All opinions are my own.


One thought on “The Songs We Hide by Connie Hampton Connally

  1. Julia, thank you so much for your wonderful review of The Songs We Hide. Many readers have told me that the music helps to counterbalance the hardship in the story. As I wrote the novel, the music did that for me, too–and the growing trust between the two protagonists was the other thing that made the story hopeful. I really appreciate your publicizing my book!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.