Christmas Awards 2011

Tuesday, 30 December 2008


June Francis/ Tilly’s Story/ Allison and Busby/ ISBN 987-0-7490-7992-5/ HB £19.99 /446 pages.

This is the third in a series set in Chester and Liverpool by the much loved saga writer June Francis. Those who have read previous books will know that Tilly is Alice’s youngest sister and that she sacrificed a lot to bring her sister up after their mother died and their father went off. The first two books in the trilogy were exciting and compelling but I really feel that Francis has excelled herself this time.

This story tells of Tilly growing up and standing on her own two feet against her sister’s wishes and the resulting coolness between them. We cannot help but admire Tilly’s determination to find work to support herself while she learns to become a writer. Her job in an office is short lived but she has found a decent home with Wendy and her mother over a newspaper shop. Meeting the people that come into the shop, Tilly finds work helping a private detective and also helping Eudora Black’s charity. Alice has never liked or trusted Eudora for reasons of her own, and she can never forgive her father for the way he treated his family, despite knowing that it was his illness that caused his behaviour. Tilly’s determination to see both her father and Eudora bring more grief to Alice.

This is a story of friendship and family life with a thread of mystery and danger running through the book to spice it up. If you enjoy stories that carry on down the years you will find this easy to follow and very enjoyable. Tilly is a warm and lovable character and Francis’ research of the period is as always unimpeachable.

You can never go wrong with this author because you always get what you expect. Five red roses. Linda Sole

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