This is a heart-warming and gritty tale of working class family life set in Bradford in 1931.
With the after effects of the first world war still taking their toll and the depression looming on the horizon: life for the Briggs family and the local community is tough. Making ends meet and dealing with the trials of day-to-day living is a challenge for them all.
The story focuses on the eldest daughter of the family, Lily. With an unemployed father still suffering the psychological effects of the First World War and a mother worn down by the daily drudge of trying to keep a family together, Lily is the stalwart of the family. She takes on the day-to-day responsibility for her three younger siblings and supports her mother as best she can.
As well as charting the family’s domestic life, we get a wonderful insight into the working lives of Lily, her sisters and her two best friends at Calvert’s Mill. Saturday nights at the local dance hall provide some much needed light-hearted moments for the girls and opportunities for romance.
With events in Lily’s life taking a turn for the worse, Lily’s is faced with even greater challenges both at home and at work and the blossoming romance with her old school friend Harry looks doomed before it really starts. As she seeks the help and support of her friends and local community, Lily has to decide if she will always put others first.
This book contains all of life’s dramas – teenage pregnancy, love, romance and death. If you like the novels of Katie Flynn, Margaret Dickinson and Elizabeth Gill, then this one could be for you.