On May 10, 1940, SS Sturmbannführer Gunther Dettmer stands on the border of Germany and France. He waits with the German war machine for the order from Adolf Hitler to start the western Blitzkrieg—the “lightning war.”

Six hundred kilometers away, WWI veteran René Legrand plows his fields. He is enjoying the life he has made with his wife and two sons in the peaceful village of Sainte-Mère-Église. Since the end of the last war, he has tried to forget the atrocities he’d witnessed. Most of all, he has tried to forget the horrors he inflicted on others as the deadliest assassin the French Army has ever known, unaware he will soon need the skills of war he once used to perfection.

His youngest son, Jean-Pierre, lives the life of a typical thirteen-year-old. He attends school, helps his father in the fields, and tries not to be nervous around the mesmerizing Angelique Lapierre. Events will soon force him to become a man, and along with his father, brother, and a small group of citizens, they harass their German occupiers and help the Allies prepare for the D-Day invasion.

Guilty of nothing other than being a Jew, Jean-Pierre’s best friend, Alfred Shapiro, flees to Spain with his family. They hope to make it through the treacherous Pyrenees Mountains before the Nazis capture them.

Working with the French Resistance, Gabrielle Hall uses her beauty and cunning to obtain military intelligence from the Nazi officers who frequent her café.

In Fort Benning, Georgia, Captain James Gavin discusses a plan with Major William Lee to begin the U.S. Army’s first parachute platoon. Four years later, General “Jumpin’ Jim” Gavin will descend through the night sky and into Normandy, France, along with the greatest invasion force the world has ever seen.

These and others are the heroes of Sainte-Mère-Église.



NINO’S HEART: A WW2 Romance Novel Set in fascist Italy

The Bronx, 1934. Nino DiVincenzo, the son of a mafia crime boss, witnesses a gruesome murder that alters the course of his life forever. Forced out of his home as a teenager, he grows into a man on his own terms. Under the guidance of trusted mentors rather than a ruthless father, Nino’s deep faith and compassion for others ultimately lead him to Rome on a journey to become a Catholic priest.New York Harbor, 1938.

As the dark cloud of WWII advances over Europe, Hannah Roseman, a beautiful Jewish widow, boards a ship for Italy. Upon her arrival, she is confronted with the fascism and anti-Semitism that has engulfed the country. To survive, she must rely on her courage and cunning along with the help of a Catholic seminary student twelve years her junior.

As their lives and secrets intertwine with the evils of wartime Europe, Nino and Hannah find themselves forced to make unfathomable decisions when confronted with choosing between their faith, their love, and their survival.


NINO’S WAR: Book 2 of The Nino Series

Nino Servidei shares a simple life with his wife Hannah and their two small children. Since smuggling his Jewish family out of fascist Italy, Nino has been tormented with nightmares brought on by the bloodshed he was forced to inflict on others to save his family.

In January 1943, with the defeat of the Axis powers in North Africa imminent, Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Winston Churchill meet in Casablanca. Their attention is focused on an invasion of southern Europe by way of the island of Sicily. With limited intelligence on the ground to safely attack their target, Allied strategists realize they need an advance agent—perhaps an American, someone who speaks Italian and already has contacts in Sicily. With the help of O.S.S. director, William J. Donovan, they locate the one man they believe can help. But is Nino Servidei, the son of a New York City crime boss, and former Catholic seminary student, up to the job? A job that may require more bloodshed—possibly his own.

Nino’s War is the second book in the Nino Servidei WW II historical fiction series. If you enjoy WW II historical fiction that’s filled with suspense, romance and rich characters, you must read the Nino series.

Nino’s Promise: Book Three of the Nino Series

He’s a simple family man who adores his wife and their two young children. Yet there’s another side to OSS Agent Nino Servidei known only to a select few. He’s a specialist—the man the US government inserts behind enemy lines to covertly recruit and organize Italian partisan groups.

After returning home from his most recent assignment in Sicily, Nino is once again called upon by William J. Donovan, the director of The Office of Strategic Services. With the Allied northern offensive in Italy bogged down, Nino’s mission will be to locate and lead the hodgepodge of partisan brigades roaming the Italian Alps. Once they are found, Nino must persuade this band of renegades to assist him with destroying enemy supply lines and harassing the German army.

But from the moment Nino arrives in Italy, he’s confronted with danger and unexpected encounters. One of which will force him to make a promise that may jeopardize not only his mission but his life.

Nino’s Promise is book three of the Nino Servidei series. If you enjoy World War II historical fiction that is packed with suspense, rich characters, and a touch of romance, the Nino series is a must read.

About the Author

J. D. (Jim) Keene was born in Crown Point, IN. where he lived until he enlisted in the United States Navy at the age of seventeen.

While in the Navy, he was stationed on the aircraft carrier USS Coral Sea CV-43, which was homeported in Norfolk Virginia. The Coral Sea made frequent port calls in Europe where Keene became intrigued with the history of the continent.

The Heroes of Sainte-Mère-Église is Keene’s first novel. Although initial ideas were set to paper in early 2018, it didn’t come to life until he visited the village of Sainte-Mère-Église in Normandy France. While there, the story began to emerge in his imagination.

The success of The Heroes of Sainte-Mère-Église has inspired him to write other Novels, including Nino’s Heart and Nino’s War, also available on Amazon. He is currently working on the third book of the Nino series and has initial outlines drafted for several other novels relating to WW2.

Keene lives in Virginia, U.S.A with his wife Katie.

J.D. Keene, author of "The Heroes of Sainte-Mère-Église"

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My name is Jim Keene, and for as long as I can remember I’ve had an interest in WW2. After visiting Sainte-Mere-Eglise in Normandy, France, I wrote my first novel by the same name, “The Heroes of Sainte-Mere-Eglise.” Through my newsletter, I will share my passion for the Second World War by writing articles that are unique. For every well known hero of WW2, there are thousands who few have ever heard of. These are the people I will present to you in my newsletter. You will also learn more about my novels, both current and future works.