- Author: Carol Rivers
Book online «Girl with Secrets: a coming of age war story and family saga full of romance, mystery and danger in Carol Rivers (books for 20 year olds .TXT) 📖». Author Carol Rivers
GIRL WITH SECRETS
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Hello my dear readers! Many of you know me via social media and we have become close chums, but I rarely meet you personally, especially now Covid 19 has changed our lives (much like Daisy’s life was changed in 1940). But that’s not to say I don’t think of every one of you as you read my book, whether paper or electronic or listening with Audio. You see, I write directly to you because I know what interests you and touches your hearts, just as it does mine. I know you’ve loved and lost. I know you’ve grieved. I know that you helped someone, somewhere at a point in your lives when you needed help yourself. That’s what happened in both the World Wars; people put others before themselves and even gave their lives to enrich and sustain others. I want to tell of these people - of you - of us and our families, and add to the social history archives for the next generation to read and realise that we really did the best we could in troubled times. The wars didn’t defeat our spirits, nor will Covid. We are resilient and we have the capacity and compassion to love beyond measure.
So, with all my love, I dedicate this book to you - to us - and to our future.
Fond hugs as always, Carol XX
Remembering with love and eternal gratitude Patsie Duggan, his thirteen-year-old sister Maureen and the team of brave children and teenagers who saved many from the flames and carnage of the blitz over 76 terrifying nights of bombardment on London’s East End 1940. They were better known as the “Dead End Kids” and saved many lives while losing some of their own. Forever in our hearts and stories and never forgotten.
About Girl with Secrets
Also by Carol Rivers
Excerpt of Christmas Child
Excerpt of Christmas to Come
About the Author
ABOUT GIRL WITH SECRETS
Nine-year-old Daisy Purbright is a country girl at heart. Together with beloved brother Bobby, they’ve enjoyed the endless freedoms of rural England. But when her entrepreneur father gambles the family’s fortunes on a speculative investment in London’s docklands, little does he realise the catastrophic mistake he is making.
The Purbrights attempt to settle to a new life in the East End but the whisperings of war grow louder. Then, one late afternoon in September 1940, Adolf Hitler conducts a paralysing bombardment on London.
Life changes dramatically and closely guarded secrets begin to threaten the Purbrights’ happiness. As war tightens its grip on the country, can Daisy stay loyal to her friends and family during one of the most fateful events of the 20th century?
London, Isle of Dogs, 1938
ONE FROST-WHITE MORNING at the beginning of November, when the first scent of Christmas clung sweetly to the high ceilings of the spacious mid-Victorian villa, nine-year-old Daisy Purbright woke, as usual, long before the rest of the household.
For a few moments she listened to the sound of her brother, ten-year-old Bobby, snoring softly under the covers of the camp bed. Only a tussle of white-blond hair, the same shade as her own, showed on the pillow. Whereas Bobby had short, determined curls, Daisy’s hair was straight and silky without a bend or swerve in any direction. Pops had informed her that although there were only two surviving senior male Purbrights, himself and his brother Uncle Ed, a noteworthy characteristic of many previous Purbrights was snowy hair, arctic blue eyes and robust complexion.
Curious to discover what the new day held she crept from her bed and tiptoed to the landing. Here, a little shivery in her nightgown, she pressed her ear against the door of their older brother’s bedroom. All was silent. Daisy suspected that seventeen-year-old Matt would be lost in dreamland wooing his drippy sweetheart, Amelia Collins.
She adored her teenage brother, but was also a tiny jot jealous of Amelia who lived in Poplar, a bicycle ride away. Somehow Amelia had spun her web and Matt had fallen into it, mesmerised, just like the moths that flew too close to the Tilley lamp flame.
Daisy loved her two brothers and father Nicholas with a passion. Pops was tall and handsome though he walked with a slight limp, a Great War injury. Matt was just as handsome, a younger mirror image of their father. Consequently, Daisy was thoroughly spoiled as the only daughter of the Purbright family. Her mother, Florence Purbright, posed more of a challenge, for Daisy had not yet decided where her true loyalties lay. Mother was beautiful and elegant. However, she dished out the discipline which was a definite minus. On the plus side, she was an exceptional cook and had long ago figured out Daisy’s weak spot. Basically, her stomach.
‘To poach or steam an egg might seem simple,’ Mother had once explained. ‘But your masterpiece might turn as hard as nails with overcooking.’
And oh, how Daisy enjoyed Mother’s eggs! Her mouth would water at the soft succulence and sprinkling of pepper on the sunny crown. Mother would smile knowingly, as if sharing a secret, somewhat in line with the secrets she shared with Daisy’s father, but, Daisy suspected, of quite a different nature.
Daisy was not only blessed with exceptional inquisitiveness but a keen ear too. She was