Sunday, 29 December 2013

Book Review: A WARTIME CHRISTMAS BY CAROL RIVERS

 

A WARTIME CHRISTMAS
BY
CAROL RIVERS
 
Published by Simon & Schuster October 2013
464 pages (Paperback)

My Rating: 8/10
 
About the Book:
Can love find a way this Christmas?
Christmas 1941, Isle of Dogs. The little community on Slater Street has fought valiantly to keep their spirits up through the long nights of the Blitz. Though her husband, Alan, has been called up to serve his country, Kay Lewis is determined to give her young son Alfie and friend Vi as merry a Christmas as any other. But when a strange woman and her son arrive on her doorstep, Kay's world is shaken to the core.
Could the terrible accusations that Dolly makes about Alan be true? Could he really have been leading a double life without her realising? Has he really stolen a large sum of money from Dolly and her son, Sean?
Then disaster strikes as Alan is reported missing in action. With no way of discovering the truth, Kay will have some difficult decisions to make if she is to protect her family and keep her faith in the man she thought she knew. - See more at: http://books.simonandschuster.co.uk/Wartime-Christmas/Carol-Rivers/9780857208330#sthash.juVbpDui.dpuf
Christmas 1941, Isle of Dogs. The little community on Slater Street has fought valiantly to keep their spirits up through the long nights of the Blitz. Though her husband, Alan, has been called up to serve his country, Kay Lewis is determined to give her young son Alfie and friend Vi as merry a Christmas as any other. 
But when a strange woman and her son arrive on her doorstep, Kay's world is shaken to the core. Could the terrible accusations that Dolly makes about Alan be true? Could he really have been leading a double life without her realising? Has he really stolen a large sum of money from Dolly and her son, Sean? 
Then disaster strikes as Alan is reported missing in action. With no way of discovering the truth, Kay will have some difficult decisions to make if she is to protect her family and keep her faith in the man she thought she knew.
First Paragraph:
Kay Lewis opened her sleepy grey eyes to the sights, sounds and smells of the world as she had known it for the past eight months of the London Blitz.  Her immediate thought was that, unbelievably, she was still alive.  After another night's intensive bombing over the Isle of Dogs - the heart of London's East End - the corrugated iron shelter was still in one piece over her!
Kay Lewis is the book's likeable main character.  She has a young son, Alfie,  her husband Alan has recently left his job and joined the Heavy Rescue Squad and Kay works in the local armaments factory.  They are a happy family unit who are struggling, like so many families, to survive during the War.  Her elderly friend and neighbour Vi's house is bombed and Kay lets her live with them.  Money is scarce but they manage. 
This is a story of how people cope in such hardship, of how friendships and love are tested and how they survive in the most challenging of situations, living in constant fear of air raids and the deadly doodlebugs.  How they try to grasp a little happiness in such desperately sad and lonely times.
I thought the blurb was a little misleading, it reads as if it's one Christmas but the book covers several Christmases while Alan is away at war, and Kay's mind is in turmoil over the strange woman and her small son who makes hurtful claims about her husband.

While overall the book was an enjoyable read, I would have liked to have known what Kay was really thinking and feeling about her husband being missing - did she think he was dead or alive - was she moving on or was she still holding out hope for him?  I thought the author did not make it clear.

The writing was clear though and made for an easy read with resilient and sympathetic characters.  What I did like was how the author kept us guessing as to what was happening with Alan, there was just one teaser chapter which gave us more questions than answers!

I enjoyed reading the story and would read another one by Carol Rivers.  She has written several novels and to read more about them and the author check these out -


Source:  I received this book from the publishers in exchange for an unbiased review.

LinkWithin

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...