The International bestselling author of Somewhere in France returns with her sweeping second novel—a tale of class, love, and freedom—in which a young woman must find her place in a world forever changed.
After four years as a military nurse, Charlotte Brown is ready to leave behind the devastation of the Great War. The daughter of a vicar, she has always been determined to dedicate her life to helping others. Moving to busy Liverpool, she throws herself into her work with those most in need, only tearing herself away for the lively dinners she enjoys with the women at her boarding house.
Just as Charlotte begins to settle into her new circumstances, two messages arrive that will change her life. One, from a radical young newspaper editor, offers her a chance to speak out for those who cannot. The other pulls her back to her past, and to a man she has tried, and failed, to forget.
Edward Neville-Ashford, her former employer and the brother of Charlotte’s dearest friend, is now the new Earl of Cumberland—and a shadow of the man he once was. Yet under his battle wounds and haunted eyes Charlotte sees glimpses of the charming boy who long ago claimed her foolish heart. She wants to help him, but dare she risk her future for a man who can never be hers?
As Britain seethes with unrest and post-war euphoria flattens into bitter disappointment, Charlotte must confront long-held insecurities to find her true voice . . . and the courage to decide if the life she has created is the one she truly wants.
Robson's second WWI novel (after Somewhere in France) weaves historical detail into a tale of a former military nurse and the man she loves. Charlotte Brown is living and working in Liverpool after the end of the Great War, but believes that she is making little difference in the lives of Britain's poorest citizens. When she returns to the estate where she was once a governess, to celebrate the wedding of her former charge, Lilly, Charlotte realizes that she has never stopped loving Lilly's brother, Edward, Lord Cumberland. When Edward's war injuries threaten to destroy his future, Charlotte agrees to help nurse him back to health, even if it means that her heart might be wounded in the process. Charlotte is an admirable protagonist: a strong woman with compassion and a forthright nature, which is evenly matched with her desire to find love and happiness. Robson will lure readers into this emotionally charged novel from the first page.
Great read-- excellent for book clubs
I loved Robson's first book Somewhere in France, and this did not disappoint. Charlotte (a character we met in the previous book--though not necessary to have read first as this stands alone) was a nurse during the Great War and is, like the rest of England learning to live in the post war world. Robson's knowledge of the era shines, and Charlotte and her friends stayed with me long after last page. Great for bookclubs.