Imagine yourself England in the times of Charles Dickens and Elizabeth Gaskell for this moving family saga of love, loss and betrayal.
One moment, William is running around barefoot, ragged and more often hungry than not. Then Aunt Betsy appears from nowhere on the day of his mother’s funeral. She needs an heir to drive away unwelcome suitors and William fits the bill. The only person she needs to persuade is William’s grieving father.
The boy leaves a family torn apart by Betsy's decision. One day in the future, that action will come back to bite her, with devastating consequences.
The book follows William as he grapples with his brother’s betrayal, set in motion on that fateful day. Only a charismatic preacher can save the brothers from a lifetime of bad blood.
It doesn't end with William as his son, John, also discovers. Can John’s wife, Emily, overcome the Victorian demands of respectability and duty out of love for him, or will she succumb to the mores of the time and the vindictiveness of her sisters.
A story of three generations working out, not only their place in the world but also how to navigate the pitfalls of living in a country fearful of invasion from France and rebellious ideas of the rights of man. Conflict grows as the workers caught up in the industrial revolution and the rise of non-conformist religion demand to be heard.
Based partly on a true story from the author’s family, this book is set in Lincolnshire, in the early years of the 19th century. We see Grimsby, a silted-up port, struggling to survive as the population dwindles to hundreds and later on the verge of a bright new future as the railway arrives.
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