Further to the book promo and extract shared on my blog on the 15th September I now have pleasure in posting my review of Ann Bennett’s latest novel: The Runaway Sisters. A little reminder of all the important details:
The Runaway Sisters written by Ann Bennett publisher Bookouture is available NOW in ebook and paperback format.
The story of two sisters fighting to survive in the darkest days of World War Two. A heartbreaking tale of resilience and bravery, about having the courage to sacrifice yourself in order to save the ones you love…
Devon, 1940: When fifteen-year-old Daisy is evacuated from her home in London, she knows she must look after her younger sister Peggy. She is the only one who can reassure Peggy that life will go back to normal, holding her close and reading to her from their one battered children’s book.
But when the sisters are taken into the countryside, Daisy quickly realises that not everyone at home is on the right side of the war. Forced to work in fields alongside orphan children, she finds herself drawn to a young boy called John, who has tried and failed to escape many times before. He protects the other children, and his bravery inspires Daisy.
Then Peggy gets sick and Daisy knows that, to save her life, they must run away. But now Peggy is not the only one Daisy is desperate to protect. As the sounds of German engines grow louder above her, Daisy is faced with an impossible choice: escape with just her sister, or risk her life to save others?
Perfect for fans of Lisa Wingate, Diney Costeloe and Shirley Dickson, The Runaway Sisters is a tale of heartwrenching loss and uplifting courage. It’s a story about family, and the light that can be found in the dark clouds of war.
I voluntarily reviewed an arc of this book. All opinions are my own and no content may be copied. However, authors and publishers may use elements of my reviews for quotes
The Runaway Sisters written by Ann Bennett is a story that will equally fascinate you and break your heart. The plight of WWII evacuees for many was such a frightening and emotive time as the children were wrenched away from their mother’s arms to a place of safety. But as the conflict grew safety wasn’t guaranteed for many.
This is the story of two sisters who escaped the blitz in London evacuating to south Devon but as the naval docks in Plymouth were close by danger was not far away. However, teenage Daisy and young Peggy were about to face a danger they had never feared.
The Runaway Sisters is such a harrowing story at times with the young girls having to face life in it’s ugliest form but when glimmers of light and warmth are shown it’s a quite beautiful tender moment. It’s one that needs remembering that in the darkest of times light can and will shine through.
My heart broke for the unfairness of life on Daisy and Peggy and it ached for all the grief they had to endure. However, this is a story of secrets and Daisy and Peggy’s life wasn’t to be revealed until many decades later when two sisters Laura and Helen were clearing out their mother Daisy’s belongings. Daisy was now in her 80’s and due to ill health was living in a care home. What her daughters discover is a history that was locked away but never forgotten. A history that shaped the way their mother became and a history that the world should remember.
A timeslip WWII historical novel that will leave your feeling wrung out with emotion. I didn’t want this story to end but sadly when it did I felt like it was a new beginning that I wanted to still be involved in. It was poignant, tragic but had moments of beauty.
About the Author
Ann Bennett was born in a small village in Northamptonshire and now lives in Surrey. Her first book, A Daughter’s Quest, originally published as Bamboo Heart, was inspired by her father’s experience as a prisoner of war on the Thai-Burma Railway. The Planter’s Wife (originally published as Bamboo Island) a Daughter’s Promise and The Homecoming, (formerly Bamboo Road) are also about the war in South East Asia.
Ann is married with three grown up sons and works as a lawyer. For more details please visit www.bambooheart.co.uk
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