Welcome to today’s stop on the blog tour for V For Victory by Lissa Evans. My thanks to Anne at Random Things Tours for inviting me to take part in the tour and to Doubleday for my digital review copy via NetGalley.
About the Book
It’s late 1944. Hitler’s rockets are slamming down on London with vicious regularity and it’s the coldest winter in living memory. Allied victory is on its way, but it’s bloody well dragging its feet.
In a large house next to Hampstead Heath, Vee Sedge is just about scraping by, with a herd of lodgers to feed, and her young charge Noel (almost fifteen ) to clothe and educate. When she witnesses a road accident and finds herself in court, the repercussions are both unexpectedly marvellous and potentially disastrous – disastrous because Vee is not actually the person she’s pretending to be, and neither is Noel.
The end of the war won’t just mean peace, but discovery…
Format: Hardcover (304 pages) Publisher: Doubleday
Publication date: 27th August 2020 Genre: Historical fiction
Find V for Victory on Goodreads
I very much enjoyed Lissa Evans’ Old Baggage when I read it back in 2018 and I’ve had the follow-up book, Crooked Heart, in my TBR pile ever since. Although V For Victory can be enjoyed as a standalone, it continues some of the storylines and features some of the characters from Crooked Heart. So I simply had to squeeze in reading Crooked Heart before starting V For Victory (although I haven’t yet managed to squeeze in writing my review).
The formidable Mattie who played such a starring role in Old Baggage doesn’t make a physical appearance in V For Victory but her influence is still felt through her precocious godson, Noel, and some of the girls who belonged to The Amazons but are now grown up. In particular, air raid warden Winnie Crowther steals many of the scenes in the latter part of the book. She’s a young woman Mattie would be proud of for her bravery and “gumption”. Winnie also represents many of the real life women who stepped in to perform unfamiliar and often dangerous roles during World War 2.
For those who have read Crooked Heart and had their heart stolen by Noel, prepare for a repeat experience. I also enjoyed getting to know the characters living in Green Shutters, the lodging house run by Vee Sedge – with help from Noel and his newfound culinary skills. Never one to miss an opportunity, Vee has enlisted some of the lodgers in tutoring Noel providing him with an eclectic pool of knowledge.
The author’s skill in combining humour, interesting characters and intriguing storylines whilst at the same time presenting a realistic picture of wartime London – “The dismal grind of London life, the V-2s still slamming down, the queues for fuel, the frozen rubble” – is in full evidence in V For Victory. By the end of the book, all the threads have been beautifully woven together to create a moving and satisfying conclusion to the trilogy.
In three words: Funny, moving, joyful
Try something similar: Dear Mrs. Bird by A J Pearce
About the Author
Lissa Evans has written books for both adults and children, including Their Finest Hour and a Half, longlisted for the Orange (now Women’s) Prize, Small Change for Stuart, shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal and the Costa Book Award, and Crooked Heart, longlisted for the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction. Old Baggage was a sell-out Waterstone’s Book of the Month and Their Finest Hour and a Half was adapted into a star-studded film with Gemma Arterton and Bill Nighy.