Fourteen-year-old Marie Anne Lawson, youngest daughter of a prosperous Northumbrian family, had always run when she might have walked, and it was as she was running away from a sight she would rather not have witnessed that she stumbled and fell, injuring her ankle, to be discovered by a local man who, because of a disfigurement, was known thereabouts as 'the branded man'. Already fearful of him by reputation, his sudden appearance frightened her into unconsciousness. When she came to, she was back at The Manor and confined to bed for an indefinite period. Marie Anne's mother, with no love and little sympathy, awaited her recovery with impatience, for she had already planned to despatch her wayward daughter to London, where her Aunt Martha would supervise the development of her natural ability for the piano, the only talent Mrs Lawson believed her daughter possessed. As for Marie Anne, already resentful at the enforced exile, Aunt Martha's frosty reception caused her to wonder if one domination would now be replaced by another.
Only the friendship of her aunt's companion, Sarah Foggerty, prevented her from plunging into despair - that and the encouragement she received from her music tutor on her daily visits to the Academy. Why, then, did his sudden disappearance make it necessary for her to return to Northumberland, this time into the care of her beloved grandfather? As the years went by many twists and turns of fate awaited Marie Anne, one of them concerned with the very man who had struck fear in her all those years before. Sarah Foggerty too had a part to play in her destiny - but neither she nor Marie Anne could have foreseen the consequences of their timely friendship. Set at the turn of the century in the wilds of Northumberland and in the slums of the East End of London, The Branded Man is the gripping story of Marie Anne, Sarah Foggerty - and the mysterious man who was to influence both their lives.
Buy The Branded Man book by Catherine Cookson Charitable Trust from Australia's Online Independent Bookstore, Boomerang Books.
(178mm x 106mm x 29mm)
Publisher: Transworld Publishers Ltd
Country of Publication:
Author Biography - Catherine Cookson Charitable Trust
Catherine Cookson was born in Tyne Dock, the illegitimate daughter of a poverty-stricken woman, Kate, whom she believed to be her older sister. She began work in service but eventually moved south to Hastings, where she met and married Tom Cookson, a local grammar-school master. Although she was originally acclaimed as a regional writer - her novel The Round Tower won the Winifred Holtby Award for the best regional novel of 1968 - her readership quickly spread throughout the world, and her many best-selling novels established her as one of the most popular of contemporary women novelists. After receiving an OBE in 1985, Catherine Cookson was created a Dame of the British Empire in 1993. She was appointed an Honorary Fellow of St Hilda's College, Oxford, in 1997. For many years she lived near Newcastle upon Tyne. She died shortly before her ninety-second birthday, in June 1998.