A new series from bestselling author Kate Thompson. 'Kate Thompson's wartime novels always strike a chord and Secrets of the Homefront Girls is no exception. You can almost smell the Yardley violets drifting over the factory as the girls live lives complicated by the trials and tribulations of war' My Weekly 'Kate Thompson's put the lives of women working in the Yardley factory during the Blitz at the heart of her latest novel' Woman's Hour Stratford, 1939. Britain may be at war, but on the home front keeping up morale and keeping up appearances go hand in hand. For the young women working on the lipstick production line at Yardley's cosmetics factory, it's business as usual. Headstrong Renee Gunn is the queen of the lipstick belt - although her cheeky attitude means she's often in trouble. When Esther, an Austrian refugee, arrives at Yardley's, it's Renee who takes her under her wing and teaches her to be a true cockney. But outside of the factory, things are more complicated. Lily, Renee's older sister, has suddenly returned home after six years away, and is hiding a dark secret. Meanwhile Esther is finding life in England more difficult than expected, and it's not long before Renee finds herself in trouble, with nowhere to turn. In the face of the Blitz, the Yardley girls are bound together by friendship and loyalty - but could the secrets they are hiding be the biggest danger of all? 'A compelling saga set around the tenacious women of the East End' Daisy Styles 'Kate Thompson is a skillful and humane storyteller who lights up the sooty face of the old East End with tales full of drama and human interest.' Annie Murray
A new series from bestselling author Kate Thompson. Stratford, 1939. Britain may be at war, but on the home front keeping up morale and keeping up appearances go hand in hand. For the young women working on the lipstick production line at Yardley's cosmetics factory, it's business as usual. Headstrong Renee Gunn is the queen of the lipstick belt - although her cheeky attitude means she's often in trouble. When Esther, an Austrian refugee, arrives at Yardley's, it's Renee who takes her under her wing and teaches her to be a true cockney. But outside of the factory, things are more complicated. Lily, Renee's older sister, has suddenly returned home after six years away, and is hiding a dark secret. Meanwhile Esther is finding life in England more difficult than expected, and it's not long before Renee finds herself in trouble, with nowhere to turn. In the face of the Blitz, the Yardley girls are bound together by friendship and loyalty - but could the secrets they are hiding be the biggest danger of all? 'Kate Thompson is a skillful and humane storyteller who lights up the sooty face of the old East End with tales full of drama and human interest.' Annie Murray
Stratford, 1943. World War Two is still raging across Europe. But for the Lavender Girls, the workers at the Yardley cosmetics factory in East London, there are even more challenges on the home front. Esther, newly married, is learning to juggle life as a working woman with her duties as a wife and homemaker. And she must find a way to help her adopted family on the Shoot, who are battling their own hidden demons . . . Headstrong Patsy, a new recruit at the Yardley factory, has a double life that takes her from the East End lipstick belt by day to the stage in the West End at night. But will she be able to keep her secrets hidden from her controlling mother, Queenie? For bubbly Lou, a forbidden love forces her to choose between family loyalty and a chance at true happiness. Can she be brave enough to forge her own path in the chaos of a war? One thing is certain: the Lavender Girls need one another more than ever if they are going to survive . . .
Nell Gunn, Snowball and Esther will be back, along with more characters from Britain's biggest beauty factory, as they battle the twists and turns of war in Stratford. Will Nell find lasting love? Will Snowball reveal what forced him onto the streets? And will Esther be able to tame the wild child she takes under her wing as part of her new bursary? As flowers and vegetables blossom in the Shoot's new Dig for Victory allotment, can the inhabitants really bury their pasts?
Cosy up with the heartwarming and festive wartime story of a group of women finding joy in troubled times, from the beloved Bomb Girls series 'It made me smile and it made me cry' 5***** Reader Review 'An absolute joy to read' Kate Thompson, bestselling author of Secrets of the Homefront Girls 'Wonderful writing which brought history alive' 5***** Reader Review _________ In times of trouble, can wishes come true? . . . A factory floor might not be their first choice of a place to spend Christmas but pulling together and making do is exactly where the Bomb Girls shine. Gladys, back from singing for the troops in Europe, quietly takes her place on the cordite line. Her old friends are determined to bring back her spark while they work hard to help their country. But what dark secret lies in Gladys's heart? Will the girls see out another year in a country at war? And, if everyone does their bit, despite the worry, pain and toil, will the Bomb Girls be able to enjoy a wonderful Christmas for all? _________ 'A cracking story with truly endearing characters' Annie Murray, bestselling author of Now the War is Over 'What a page turner' 5***** Reader Review 'Couldn't put this book down' 5***** Reader Review
Three girls all turn up for work, the day war is declared... Dotty has never known a life outside of the orphanage where she grew up, let alone love. Lucy is the sole carer of her little sister, now that her brother has gone to war. Annabelle has led a life of privilege but everyone has to pinch the pennies at the moment. Adjusting to life on the shop-floor at Coventry's only department store is hard enough, but then the bombs begin to fall... As the devastating effects of war come to bear on the three women, their bond deepens. One thing's for certain, the girls are going to need each other. Praise for Rosie Goodwin: 'Goodwin excels in writing about relationships, the hardships of life, the ties of family and the joys of love and friendship.' Lancashire Evening Post 'Rosie is a talented storyteller.' Dee Williams
Dear Glory, Loneliness is built into the fabric of this war, isn’t it? I say a little prayer before I stick my hand in the mailbox. The “Rockport, Massachusetts” stamp on the front of an envelope means the clouds will part, revealing a brilliant sun…. It’s January 1943 when Rita Vincenzo receives her first letter from Glory Whitehall. Glory is an effervescent young mother from New England, impulsive and free as a bird. Rita is a Midwestern professor’s wife with a love of gardening and a generous, old soul. These two women have nothing in common except one powerful bond: the men they love are fighting in a war a world away from home. Brought together by an unlikely twist of fate, Glory and Rita begin a remarkable correspondence. The friendship forged by their letters allows them to survive the loneliness and uncertainty of waiting on the home front, and gives them the courage to face the battles raging in their very own backyards. Connected across the country by the lifeline of the written word, each woman finds her life profoundly altered by the other’s unwavering support. Filled with unforgettable characters and unbridled charm, Home Front Girls is a timeless celebration of the strength and solidarity of women. It is a luminous reminder that even in the darkest of times, true friendship will carry us through. Previously published as I’LL BE SEEING YOU.
Secrets of the Sewing Bee tells the story of the defiant and courageous women on the home front, from Kate Thompson, author of Secrets of the Singer Girls. Orphan Flossy Brown arrives at Trout's garment factory in Bethnal Green amidst the uncertainty of the Second World War. In 1940s London, each cobbled street is strewn with ghosts of soldiers past, all struggling to make ends meet. For the women of the East End, their battles are on the home front. Flossy is quickly embraced by the colourful mix of characters working at Trout's, who have turned their sewing expertise to vital war work. They fast become the family that Flossy has always longed for. Things aren't so easy for Peggy Piper, another new recruit at the factory. She's used to the high life working as a nippie in the West End, and is not best pleased to find herself bent over a sewing machine. Dolly Doolaney, darling of the East End, sets up a sewing circle and the ladies at Trout's play their part in defending the frontline as they arm themselves with their needles and set about stitching their way to victory. But as the full force of the Blitz hits London, the sewing bee are forced to shelter in the underground tube stations on a nightly basis. In such close quarters, can Dolly manage to contain the secret that binds them all? And how will Peggy and Flossy cope as their lives are shaped and moved by forces outside of their control?
THE TENTH NOVEL IN THE BESTSELLING SHIPYARD GIRLS SERIES 'Emotional and gripping' Take a Break December 1943 As the war effort gathers steam in Europe, it's all hands on deck on the home front. Gloria is over the moon to be reunited with her sweetheart Jack. But her sons Bobby and Gordon are away with the Navy and still know nothing of their mother's divorce and new half-sister. Rosie's squad of welders must work gruelling hours in the yard as they prepare for the Allied invasion of Normandy. All the while Rosie herself waits anxiously for news of her husband Peter, who is carrying out dangerous work as an undercover operative in France. Meanwhile welder Dorothy has a feeling that her beau Toby is planning to pop the question when he's next on leave. But it seems that her head is being turned by someone closer to home... It will take great strength and friendship if the shipyard girls are to weather the storms to come. ______________________________ Praise for Nancy Revell 'Nancy Revell knows how to stir the passions and soothe the heart!' Northern Echo 'Stirring and heartfelt storytelling' Peterborough Evening Telegraph
The first novel in the wonderful Factory Girls series. Perfect for fans of Nancy Revell and Ellie Dean. 'A brilliantly written and uplifting WWII story' Nancy Revell, author of the Shipyard Girls series ‘A delightful authentic-feeling saga’ Peterborough Telegraph ‘Highlights the strength of women during the toughest of times...Clarke’s love and respect for her family’s roots really shines through’ Culture Fly 'Beautifully written, the warmth shines from every page and the layers are as deep and rich as the coal seams the men work upon.' Frost Magazine _________________________________________ August 1941: As war sweeps across Britain and millions of men enlist to serve their country, it’s up to the women to fight the battle on the home front. Fran always thought she would marry her childhood sweetheart and lead a simple life in Massingham, the beloved pit village she has always called home. But with war taking so many men to the front line, the opening of a new factory in the north-east of England presents an opportunity for Fran to forge a new path. Against her father’s wishes and with best friends Sarah and Beth by her side, Fran signs up to join the ranks of women at the factory. It’s dangerous work but as the three friends risk life and limb for their country, they will discover that their lives are only just beginning... ___________________________________________ Look out for the next book in the series, Heroes on the Home Front, available now!
March 1911: Betty Dean needs a job and somewhere to live, and eventually, a husband – according to her mother. Sent into service at Stowford House in Cheshire, where the days are long and the work is gruelling, Betty’s dreams of making something of herself seem even further away. But soon she is forced to return to The Potteries, carrying with her a dreadful secret which could leave her reputation in tatters. Could WW1 bring new opportunities or will Betty run out of options? A new job on the trams throws her a lifeline. Meeting fellow tram girls Connie and Jean brings the joy of friendship, even if Betty struggles with having to keep secrets from her new pals. When Duncan Kennedy, a shy but charming soldier, enters Betty’s life, it seems that she may finally find love. But opening herself up isn’t easy, and when he leaves for the front, she finds herself alone once again. As the Great War rumbles on, Betty’s life in The Potteries is full of its own battles... A heart-breaking WW1 saga that fans of Pam Howes and Nancy Revell will love. Praise for Lynn Johnson’s Potteries Girls series: ‘A poignant, emotional and heart-wrenching read...best read with a box of tissues handy’ Bookish Jottings ‘This truly was a fabulous story from beginning to end and I struggled to put it down!... richly detailed, beautifully written and the storyline along with the characters was enthralling’ Rose is Reading ‘heartbreaking, emotive and well researched...This is an easy,enjoyable and informative read, recommended for lovers of historical fiction.’ Waggy Tales ‘I highly recommend reading this and being transported back in time. An excellent historical fiction that had me compulsively turning the pages.’ Books and Bookends ‘Overall, I loved it. There were lots of moments that made me gasp and others that almost made me cry, and then there were those that made me smile and sigh.’ Jess Bookish Life ‘heartwarming and emotional. I absolutely love the story line...I really enjoyed the setting and the characters. If you enjoy historical fiction, this is definitely a book to read!’ Jessica Belmont Book Reviews ‘I’m quite astonished this is a debut novel... The characters came alive on the page, and it’s a fully rounded story... A fabulous read’ Grace J Reviewerlady ‘an emotional, captivating read which is perfect for anyone who loves a good saga!... a fantastic read that quickly drew me into the story and kept my interest throughout with its fabulous plot.’ Over The Rainbow Book Blog ‘Ginnie is a likeable character from the off... I cried at some of the heartache she saw, and was so pleased with every small moment of happiness. You won’t be able to put this one down.’ Jennifer C Wilson ‘the author winds her story around your person and snares your heart... Though filled with much darkness and despair, there is also hope and love’ Insatiable Readers ‘Johnson has a Cookson flair...she does capture the heart and soul of her characters.’ Cheryl M-M Book Reviews ‘a step back in time with a young protagonist who pulled on my heart strings...The friendship between her and Sam was especially heartwarming. I really enjoyed my first introduction to this author’ By The Letter Book Reviews