1943, Mulberry Lane, London. In the midst of another bleak winter, life is hard for the residents of The Lane.
When Rose Merchant arrives at Mulberry Lane, she is carrying a secret that haunts her. How can she tell her landlady and the Lanes' matriarch Peggy Ashley that she is the daughter of a murderer?
As Rose learns that she is amongst friends she gradually learns to trust and even to love. But when Peggy's estranged husband Laurie returns home for good, both Rose and Peggy's lives are once again turned upside down.
Can they both find their way through the heartache to find happiness?
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New Arrivals at Mulberry Lane by Rosie Clarke takes us back to 1944. Rose Marchant finds herself on Mulberry Lane in London’s East End looking for a new start. Rose has a secret that she does not want to come to light. Rose worked at a pub back home, so she heads to The Pig & Whistle to see if they are hiring. Peggy Ashley co-owns The Pig & Whistle with her estranged husband, Laurie who is away on war work. Peggy can tell Rose is hiding something, but she hires her and provides her with a place to live. Rose is enveloped into Mulberry Lane where she makes friends and meets someone special that she could imagine marrying. But will they still like her when they find out what she is hiding? Mabel Tandy owns the wool shop on the lane and has Ellie Morris along with her little girl living with her. Mabel has become a mother to Ellie and grandmother to her daughter. Ellie worries what will happen when Peter, her husband, returns home and learns that she kept the child. Tom Barton manages the neighborhood grocery store for Maureen Hart, but he is eager to turn eighteen and join the army. Peggy is thankful to have Rose helping in the pub and with her busy twins. Then Laurie returns home and takes charge of The Pig & Whistle and upsets the whole household. How will life change on Mulberry Lane now that Laurie has returned?
New Arrivals at Mulberry Lane is another delightful addition to The Mulberry Lane Series. Peggy Ashley is the matriarch of Mulberry Lane and watches over the other residents. She is friends with Maureen Hart and Anne Ross. Peggy is known for taking in stray chicks and giving them a helping hand. When Rose arrives, Peggy does not hesitate in offering her a job and a room. The characters in this series are well-developed. Rosie Clarke brings her characters to life making them realistic (characters that we love and others that we love to hate). I look forward to each new book to see how the residents of Mulberry Lane are faring during World War II. All of our favorite characters are back in New Arrivals at Mulberry Lane along with some unpleasant ones. I thought New Arrivals at Mulberry Lane was well-written and engaging. Personally, I recommend reading the books in The Mulberry Lane series in order. Each book builds upon the previous one. We see how the characters handle the war as it progresses. Life continues to go one at home while the war rages on around them. They face financial struggles, heartache, friendship, births, deaths, rationing, love, and fear. There are twists and turns that will keep readers riveted. Rosie Clarke captures the time period with the clothing, movies, slang, rationing, the struggles our characters face, the bombings, and the worry about loved ones off fighting the war. I wish I could tell you more, but I do not want to spoil it for you. I cannot wait for the next installment in The Mulberry Lane series to find out what happens next.