Mollie Walton ~ A Mother’s War
North Yorkshire, September 1939.
Rosina Calvert-Lazenby , the only surviving member of her family and widowed by forty-four, has lived at Raven Hall all her life. With war approaching, Rosina must be strong for her daughters, five confident young women who are thick as thieves.
When the RAF come to stay at Raven Hall, Rosina finds herself intrigued by their charismatic, albeit young, officer. But is there time for love with the war looming and her eldest daughter leaving home?
Having read so many books set in France and Germany during the second world war, it’s a refreshing change to read about Britain. There are some fascinating stories about the men and women who stayed behind and I’ve attended a few talks from women who worked at Bletchley Park.
A Mother’s War looks at the early years of the war when everything started to change. It follows a family of women as they make decisions and learn about who they really are, as they step away from the family home, into the real world.
It’s well-written and interesting, painting a vivid picture about the WRENs and the options for women who wished to get involved. As it’s the first book in a saga, the majority of the book is scene setting; while it does this well, there is a lack of action. No doubt this will build in books two and three as the war effort increases.
Characters are nicely drawn and likeable. Despite their privileged background, they’re relatable and Grace in particular feels like a friend who’s kindly sharing her story with you. Men feel a little stereotyped in places, but it helps to show the naivety of Grace compared with Nancy. Their friendship is lovely and their training experience is credible and interesting.
Although I didn’t love it as much as some of Walton’s other books, I’m excited to see where the story goes and to find out more about the other sisters.
I received a copy from Welbeck Publishing. Opinions my own.