Book Review and Giveaway | The Medallion by Cathy Gohlke #TheMedallion #CathyGohlke #HFVBTBlogTours

Genre: Historical Fiction, Romance, Christian

Published: June 4, 2019

Pages: 402

Author Cathy Gohlke has written a touching and inspirational story set during World War II in Poland. Thank you to Amy at Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours for including us on the blog tour!

The Medallion by Cathy Gohlke was one of the best World War II, Historical Fiction books I’ve ever read! Set in Warsaw, this story based on real events, was magnificent.

I read this book in one sitting! I was completely drawn into the lives of the two couples, Itzhak and Rosa and Sophie and Janek. Each character was drawn so vividly, they felt like real people. Every loss felt like a personal blow. The fear and tension and pain as the families were torn apart made me so angry and sad.

I ached for Rosa and Sophie. Imagine giving up your child in order to save her life? So many families were separated during the war with the hope that they would be reunited.

The descriptions of the atrocities and torture and dehumanization were gruesome and hard to read. The author’s note at the end shared how she came up with the story, which is based on real events in Lithuania, specifically the Ponary Forest and a woman named Irene Sendler, a Polish Catholic social worker who helped develop a network to rescue more than 2,500 children during the war.

Don’t let the genre of Christian Fiction deter you from picking this book up. It is a worthwhile and moving look at a terrible time in history, and it shows how religion and faith helped these characters survive such unspeakable events.

As writers we have one voice, just like everyone else. But studies have shown that if one voice is raised against injustice, others will stand and join the march. That’s the role of Christian fiction.” Cathy Gohlke

Despite the dark tone of much of the book, it was also suspenseful and absorbing and the ending was hopeful and inspirational.

Goodreads | Amazon

About the Book

For fans of bestselling World War II fiction like Sarah’s Key and The Nightingale comes an illuminating tale of courage, sacrifice, and survival, about two couples whose lives are ravaged by Hitler’s mad war yet eventually redeemed through the fate of one little girl.

Seemingly overnight, the German blitzkrieg of Warsaw in 1939 turns its streets to a war zone and shatters the life of each citizen–Polish, Jewish, or otherwise. Sophie Kumiega, a British bride working in the city’s library, awaits news of her husband, Janek, recently deployed with the Polish Air Force. Though Sophie is determined that she and the baby in her womb will stay safe, the days ahead will draw her into the plight of those around her, compelling her to help, whatever the danger.

Rosa and Itzhak Dunovich never imagined they would welcome their longed-for first child in the Jewish ghetto, or that they would let anything tear their family apart. But as daily atrocities intensify, Rosa soon faces a terrifying reality: to save their daughter’s life, she must send her into hiding. Her only hope of finding her after the war–if any of them survive–is a medallion she cuts in half and places around her neck.

Inspired by true events of Poland’s darkest days and brightest heroes, The Medallion paints a stunning portrait of war and its aftermath, daring us to believe that when all seems lost, God can make a way forward.

About the Author

Cathy Gohlke is the three-time Christy Award-winning author of the critically acclaimed novels The Medallion, Until We Find Home, Secrets She Kept (winner of the 2016 Carol and INSPY Awards), Saving Amelie (winner of the 2015 INSPY Award), Band of Sisters, Promise Me This (listed by Library Journal as one of the best books of 2012), William Henry Is a Fine Name, and I Have Seen Him in the Watchfires (listed by Library Journal as one of the best books of 2008), which also won the American Christian Fiction Writers’ Book of the Year Award.

Cathy writes novels steeped with inspirational lessons from history. Her stories reveal how people break the chains that bind them and triumph over adversity through faith.

When not traveling to historic sites for research, she, her husband, and their dog, Reilly, divide their time between Northern Virginia and the Jersey Shore, enjoying time with their grown children and grandchildren.

Visit her website at and on Facebook at CathyGohlkeBooks.


During the Blog Tour, we will be giving away 5 paperback copies of The Medallion! To enter, please use the Gleam form HERE.

Giveaway Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on June 19th. You must be 18 or older to enter.

– Giveaway is open to US only.

– Only one entry per household.

– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspicion of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.

– The winner has 48 hours to claim prize or a new winner is chosen.

Direct Link:

Enjoyed this post? Will you do me a favor and click below to retweet?

[bctt tweet=”OrangeCountyReaders Reviews The Medallion by Cathy Gohlke. A Historical Fiction masterpiece!”]

Want more reviews? Click here!

This post may contain affiliate links, which means I receive compensation if you make a purchase using this link. Thank you for supporting this blog and the books I recommend! I may have received a book for free in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.

Follow OrangeCountyReaders on Goodreads, Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. Support Us on Ko-Fi and Amazon. And please, feel free to leave a comment!


  1. Thank you so much for this great review, Jaymi! I’m so glad you enjoyed The Medallion. Thank you for hosting the tour!

    HF Virtual Book Tours


  2. Thank you, Jaymi, for this stellar review! I am truly honored and so glad you enjoyed reading The Medallion. God bless!


Comments are closed.