Our Military Life Blog

The Nightingale – Week 3

Vianne is seeing the changes that are going on around her. There is less food, clothing is hard to come by, and the people are more subdued. As the time moves forward, it seems as though most people have lost hope. The lives they had before are distant memories, and they are doing whatever they can to just survive. But survival is not easy. Groups are being targeted. People have been dismissed from jobs for being Jewish, for being political, or asking to many questions.

Captain Beck is still living in the house with Vianne, and while he is there, there is food. But when he leaves, the struggle to survive is scary! While he is on leave, the food in the house becomes more scarce than ever, and Vianne gives most of it to Sophie. When Captain Beck returns to their home after being on leave, Vianne is sick and hardly able to move at all. He is horrified at her condition and brings her some food to put into her system. Her friend Rachel comes over and helps take care of her as she is nursed back to health. When Captain Beck lets Vianne know that she must hide Rachel if she wants to save her, Vianne wonders what the next round of horrors are going to bring, and she does not have long to wait. As they begin rounding up some of the Jews, they are only interested in those were born outside of France, which means that many children are being separated from their parents. Vianne knows she has to do something to help out, but what can she do? After a failed attempt to get out of France, and Rachel’s daughter being killed, Vianne is determined to do what she can to save her friend. When she can’t any longer, she takes Ari, and begins to tell everyone that she adopted the boy from a relative.

Isabelle is still carrying out her work. She is leading groups of downed airman over the Pyrenees Mountains, but the nets are closing and the German soldiers are hunting for the Nightingale even harder than they were before. Each trip is risky, but Isabelle refuses to stop. She does what she can to get them out of the country, but one airman she rescues proves to be the beginning of more trouble for her sister. Hiding in the barn next to the property, she loses the airman she was trying to save, but that is the least of her worries. Captain Beck is searching for that airman, and so are the SS, and they are not as laid back as the captain. What happens next saves Isabelle, but puts Vianne in new danger…


This week we are reading Chapters 20-29


  1. How do you think Isabelle was able to conceal her activities from the Germans?
  2. Captain Beck seems to be a decent character. Do you find yourself feeling sorry for him?
  3. Vianne knows that she cannot do much without putting her children in danger, but she is determined to do what she can to save some of the children in the town. Would you have done the same thing?