I love reading a good old family saga especially the historical ones. Sheila Newberry is one of my favorite saga author who takes me to a place in past to experience life in England before, during, after the great wars. Not so much about the wars but the general lives lived during those times. Of people surviving the best way they can, of simple hopes and dreams, where loving someone in the societal bounds was easy and the norm. Her novels are very atmospheric, about the general population who was hardworking, happy in their given lots and getting by just fine. So read on to know how I found her latest story which spans the end of 19th century and the start of the 20th. Happy Reading.
The Girl with no Home
Historical Fiction , Women’s Fiction
Pub Date 10 Mar 2016
Location set in – London and Kent, England
Rating : 4/5
CAN SHE FINALLY FIND THE PLACE SHE BELONGS?
Abandoned by her mother at the age of seven, Jerusha Carey is no stranger to being left behind.
Eleven years later she is married to Dan Applebee, an older, reliable farmer from Kent. Jerusha believes she has finally found the security she has always craved. But then disaster strikes.
Two years after the sudden death of her husband, Jerusha is alone once again. But the arrival of the enigmatic Joe Finch, a traveller seeking work on the farm and a home for his daughter, sets Jerusha’s life on a new path, giving her hope for her future.
Has Jerusha found her happy ending at last, or will she be forever destined to lose the ones she loves?
Could this be the happy ending she has been waiting for?
The Girl with no Home is about Jerusha’s life and how from the age of 7 her homelessness starts and comes a full circle after a little more than 2 decades. With people abandoning her for various reasons , Jerusha’s starting from 7 years age finds her making herself a new home every few couple of years.
First her mother leaves her to follow her father to foreign shores putting her up in boarding school. Post the school’s abrupt closure she’s off to a foster home, which rarely end up well for the children. After the pitiful foster home she finds some peace and love with her guardians mother, a woman larger than life, full of love and compassion.
Finally, it looks like Jerusha will have her own home when she marries Dan, a simple country farmer. But a few years in the marriage she loses Dan but fortunately keeps the house. So begins her survival alone until she comes into her own, runs the house independently and finds love and family again.
It was a pleasant story with characters who had survival as their primary aim but didn’t let that dim their outlook towards life. Despite their circumstances they learnt to survive, laugh, live, find happiness and the little things in life. That’s what I like about these historical fiction stories, the people, their strength of character and attitude towards life.
Jerusha is a strong woman who learnt to be independent, to love, to survive to carry on when she had little or no hope. The other characters were pretty good too, at every step Jerusha had strong women around her as family, friends, guardians.
It is the type of story I would pick to spend a cost weekend with. Be it Spring, with a cool drink, picnic and lying around in the garden or by the fire in winter, a story to loose yourself in and go back to a simpler, happier time.
Sheila Newberry was born in Suffolk and spent a lot of time there both before and during the war. She wrote her first ‘book’ before she was ten – all sixty pages of it – in purple ink. She spent forty years living in Kent with her husband John on a smallholding, and has nine children and twenty-two lively grandchildren. They retired back to Suffolk where Sheila still lives today.
Reviewed by Bharti