About the Book
Winner of the 2012 Robert Kroetsch City of Edmonton Book Prize
Shortlisted for the 2012 Edmonton Public Library Alberta Readers’ Choice Award
In 1941, a young man imagines thrilling battles and heroic acts when he lies about his age and joins the army. Assigned to the Winnipeg Grenadiers, part of the Canadian army in Hong Kong, Freddy McKee becomes a prisoner of war six weeks after arriving in Hong Kong.
Five years pass and Freddy finally returns home from the war, but three women—Joanna Keegan, her daughter Hope, and the beautiful and mysterious Su Li—feel echoes of Freddy’s ordeal in each of their lives. For Freddy, the memory of war is a heavier burden than the weapon he once carried. Freddy must fight to survive in a world that has left him behind.
“Veterans traditionally have never shared the hell of their war. Often the only way to get close to their experiences is via skillful fiction. Gritty and well-researched, Freddy’s War takes us to the siege of Hong Kong and back.” —Ted Barris, author and military historian
“Wartime love stories are the stuff of cliché, but there’s no false sentimentality in Freddy’s War. With a cool reporter’s eye, Schultz draws on her deep knowledge of China, and of prairie social history, to craft an understated, elegaic story of loneliness, loss, and dislocation.” —Paula Simons, Edmonton Journal
“The fact that Freddy has one foot in a Chinese world and one foot in a white Canadian world adds a layer of racial misunderstanding to a story where everyone misunderstands what war can do to us . . . this is a great read.” —Geist
“It’s an interesting first foray into the world of fiction for Schultz, and she handles it deftly. Alternating between perspectives is a tricky business but she pulls it off well.” —St. Albert Gazette
“The idea of the novel is excellent.” —Edmonton Journal
“Brutal and violent in parts, honestly human and loving in others, this is a great novel about first-hand experience of war.” —Laurie’s Book Company, CBC RadioActive