I’m delighted to be hosting today’s stop on the blog tour for Sadie’s Wars by Rosemary Noble, alongside my tour buddies, Jo at Cup of Toast and Kathleen at CelticLady’s Reviews. Thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for inviting me to take part in the tour.
Sadie’s Wars is the third book in Rosemary’s ‘Currency Girls’ series, a historical saga spanning continents and generations about a Australian pioneer family. You can read my review below.
About the Book
Sadie is brought up amongst the vineyards of the Yarra Valley whilst her work-obsessed father reaps riches from the boom years before the Great War. With post-war depression looming, Sadie’s only option is to flee from her disastrous marriage, seeking refuge in Cleethorpes, a small seaside town in northern England.
Years later, when her sons are in RAF Bomber Command, she receives a letter from her long-lost brother which forces her to confront the past and her part in her family’s downfall.
Can old wounds be healed? Will she find new love? Will this second war destroy everyone she saved?
Format: Paperback, ebook (310 pp.) Publisher:
Published: 29th September 2018 Genre: Historical Fiction
Find Sadie’s Wars (Currency Girls #3) on Goodreads
Sadie’s Wars is the third book in the author’s ‘Currency Girls’ series, the previous books being Search for the Light and The Digger’s Daughter, (neither of which I have read).
Reading Sadie’s Wars as a standalone, it did take me a little time to work out who all the different characters were in what is a large extended family with lots of siblings, in-laws, nephews and nieces. Added to this, the story shifts frequently between two different timelines and locations: Grimsby and Cleethorpes in World War Two, and various places in Australia in the first few decades of the twentieth century, including the years of World War One . However, stick with it, and you’ll find, as I did, that eventually everything falls into place.
The scenes set in Australia allow the author to conjure up a picture of Sadie’s happy if itinerant childhood due to her father’s career, of her teenage years and disastrous first marriage. I loved the evocative descriptions of the landscape which skilfully captured the harsh beauty of the Australian outback. These sections brought home as well the vital part played by Australian troops (and other parts of the then British Empire) in World War One and the terrible losses they incurred.
The sections set in Cleethorpes during World War Two, where Sadie and her sons have made their home for reasons which will become clear as the book progresses, have equally vivid descriptions of the impact of war on the civilian population of Britain. They also emphasize the vital role that cups of tea played in the war effort!
The ‘wars’ in the book’s title refer both to the actual wars that Sadie lives through. Her concern for her sons when sending them off to serve in the RAF is all the more powerful knowing she is fully aware of the dangers they face, having experienced the impact of World War One. However, Sadie is also fighting her own internal ‘wars’ as it were. She feels guilt over the poor choices she’s made in the past leaving her reluctant to relinquish control over her life again as a consequence. Past presentiments of imminent danger to those close to her fuel her fears even more. Sadie’s desire for independence, such as that enjoyed by her brothers, comes into conflict with a world in which seemingly everything is controlled by men.
A chance meeting provides the opportunity for Sadie’s life to take a more positive course and offer the prospect of a happier future. But can Sadie find the courage to listen to her heart rather than be held back by fears of repeating mistakes of the past? I really felt for Sadie as she struggles with the dilemmas that face her. Knowing she made the wrong choice once (even if that was through the malign actions of others) and believing that in some way she is still being punished for it, she fears that grasping happiness for herself will necessarily demand a greater sacrifice than she’s prepared to make.
I enjoyed Sadie’s Wars and, having finished the book, was fascinated to learn from the Author’s Note how much was based on real events.
I received a review copy courtesy of the author and Rachel’s Random Resources.
In three words: Engaging, emotional, dramatic
Try something similar…A Ration Book Christmas by Jean Fullerton (read my review here)
About the Author
Rosemary writes: ‘I worked as a librarian, mostly with young people, so books have been my life, ever since I first stepped into a library and found a magical treasure trove. My other love is social history. Retirement gave me the opportunity to travel to Australia where I discovered stories that deserved to be written. I found a new career as an author which gives me immense pleasure. I write for myself but am delighted that others enjoy my books.’
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