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Publisher Description

A family in need. A country on the brink of war.

Ella is trying to put the past behind her… but the past won’t always stay hidden.

The truth is, Ella is hiding from a scandal. A scandal that drove her family out of their beloved Lane End Cottage in the tiny Yorkshire village they had lived in all their lives. A scandal that her sister Alice was blamed for.

But Alice is no longer here. So it’s up to Ella to pick up the pieces and do the best she can for the family she loves so dearly.

Ella’s luck finally changes when she gains work at Grange House, a gentleman’s residence on the outskirts of York. But can she keep her position there? Or will she follow in her elder sister’s footsteps?

A gripping new saga series that fans of Dilly Court and Valerie Wood will adore.


‘Readers who enjoy historical fiction will enjoy reading Ella’s Journey.’ The Avid Reader

‘an extremely good debut novel … an emotional rollercoaster’ Gingerbookgeek

‘Another author to add to my to-read list.’ Netgalley Reviewer

About the author

I grew up in East Yorkshire, spending my time in the sort of rolling countryside featured in David Hockney’s more recent works. After acquiring a degree in English Literature from London University I worked in non-fiction publishing. Undertaking a ‘Starting to Write’ course at Arvon’s Lumb Bank reminded me how much I had loved to write as a child and so The Mill Valley Girls novels, inspired by and set in the West Yorkshire landscape, were born. Now I live in the unspoilt East Kent countryside, perfect for writing, walking and inspiration.

Fiction & Literature
October 5
One More Chapter

Customer Reviews

Kris Anderson, The Avid Reader ,

First book in The Mill Valley Girls

Ella’s Journey by Lynne Francis is first book in The Mill Valley Girls series. Ella Bancroft is ready for a new job after three years of working long hours with little pay. She arrives in York to work for Mr. & Mrs. Ward at Grange House. Ella sends a majority of her earning home to her mum who has four mouths to feed. Her family has had a hard time since the fire at the mill for which Ella’s sister, Alice was accused of setting. The family knows that Alice was innocent, but she perished before her trial. Ella is hoping to keep her association with the fire from her new employers. Unfortunately, Grace Ward discovers the connection and uses it to force Ella to concoct a love potion. Things (of course) go awry and Grace blames Ella for the debacle. Ella is sacked and returns to her family. The family is forced to move to a small cottage, and find a way to survive. How will the Bancroft family find a way to move forward? Who really set the mill fire?

Ella’s Journey is nicely written and has a good main character. Ella is a lovely (and realistic) character. She is a determined, bright young woman with a caring heart. The author did a good job at creating her characters. I enjoyed the story, but I thought the pace was too slow. Ella’s Journey could have used some fine tuning (it would have made a big difference). As the story progresses, the focus shifts from Ella to those in her family and circle of friends. I thought the author did a great job at capturing the time-period and what people in Ella’s social class experienced (very realistic). Ella’s Journey is the first book in a three-part series. Readers who enjoy historical fiction will enjoy reading Ella’s Journey.

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