Description - Wild Strawberries by Emma Blair
Maizie and her husband, Sam, run the Paris Hotel in Coverack, Cornwall, but when World War II starts Sam joins up and leaves Maizie to run the hotel. Struggling to keep the hotel going, Maizie is further troubled when she takes on Rosemary and Bobby, two evacuees from Plymouth but after a difficult start the children settle in and Maizie, who wants a family, enjoys their company. Her happiness is further enhanced with the arrival of the attractive Christain Le Gall, a French soldier wounded at Dunkirk, who comes to stay at the hotel whilst on leave. But this happiness doesn't last - the explosion of a bomb causes physical and emotional devastation and Maizie discovers that Sam, a rough man who beats her, has also been abusing Rosemary. Maizie, torn between her duty as a wife and her love for Christian, realizes she is unable to leave Sam and tells Christian she is unable to run away with him. Christian, heartbroken, returns to France. But Maizie, now pregnant, still loves him. Will she find happiness again?
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(177mm x 108mm x 29mm)
Time Warner Paperbacks
Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group
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Book Reviews - Wild Strawberries by Emma Blair
UK Kirkus Review »
Sixty years ago World War Two spread its deadly tentacles from the fields of battle to the most remote and peaceful corners of Britain. Coverack, a small Cornish village was not immune. The incongruously-named Paris Hotel had lost most of its holiday trade but occasionally an unexpected guest blew in from the grim world outside. Christian Le Gall, escapee from the fall of France, now working for the French Underground Movement, came - and fell in love, not only with Cornwall, but with Maizie Blackacre, landlady of the Paris, trying hard to keep the hotel running while caring for two bewildered and vulnerable evacuees. But Maizie is married and well-aware of her marriage vows. Husband Sam, a merchant seaman, is a bully and a brute, but still Maizie feels she owes him loyalty; and fights against her growing attraction to Christian. As time passes the struggle for Maizie and Christian becomes harder, and a softening on Sam's part, after a brush with death, adds to Maizie's difficulties. There is graphic recall of those far-off, perilous and reckless days, when at any moment death might strike - even in as remote an area as rural Cornwall. Against the fluctuating progress of Maizie's and Christian's romance risks are taken, lives lost, hearts broken. This is a reminder that even in the harshest of those harsh days a flicker of hope and promise never quite died; and in the end better times did come back. (Kirkus UK)
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Author Biography - Emma Blair
Emma Blair was born in Glasgow and now lives in Devon. She is the author of twenty novels, including SCARLET RIBBONS and FLOWER OF SCOTLAND (both shortlisted for Romantic Novelist of the Year Award).