Release date - 4th May 2017 (Hardcover)
Book length - 416 pages
Book Depository - www.bookdepository.com
Amazon UK - The Married Girls
BRAND NEW FROM THE BESTSELLING AUTHOR OF THE SISTERS OF ST. CROIX, THE THROWAWAY CHILDREN AND THE GIRL WITH NO NAME.
Wynsdown, 1949. In the small Somerset village of Wynsdown, Charlotte Shepherd is happily married to farmer Billy. She arrived from Germany on the Kindertransport as a child during the war and now feels settled in her adopted home.
Meanwhile, the squire's fighter pilot son, Felix, has returned to the village with a fiancée in tow. Daphne is beautiful, charming... and harbouring secrets. After meeting during the war, Felix knows some of Daphne's past, but she has worked hard to conceal that which could unravel her carefully built life.
For Charlotte, too, a dangerous past is coming back in the shape of fellow refugee, bad boy Harry Black. Forever bound by their childhoods, Charlotte will always care for him, but Harry's return disrupts the village quiet and it's not long before gossip spreads.
The war may have ended, but for these girls, trouble is only just beginning.
What can I say about THE MARRIED GIRLS by Diney Costeloe? Well for starters I can begin with how much I love this beautifully endearing, at times devastating, and overall captivating, novel.
The author effortlessly transports you back in time to Wynsdown after the war, and we are immersed in small village life, which is not as quiet and laid-back as one would imagine. Charlotte is blissfully happy with her husband and their two children, but when a blast from her past returns looking for her, will it encroach on her happiness? When Felix returns to his childhood home with the woman of his dreams, Daphne, he longs for a peaceful home and a family to adore, but Daphne is not exactly who she says she is, and as events take an unexpected turn, will Felix be able to live with the truth?
With many unexpected, shock events throughout the story, THE MARRIED GIRLS by Diney Costeloe kept me reading into the wee small hours of the night as I longed to see how life would unfold for the main characters. I cried, I smiled, and I became a part of it all as the narrative is so exquisite and detailed. I loved Charlotte and Billy from the beginning, and Felix grew on me as his life opened up on the pages in front me, but it was the community itself that was the most endearing - even with its pitfalls of nosy neighbours and gossip. THE MARRIED GIRLS by Diney Costeloe has love, happiness, tragedy, friendship, and hope at the heart of its story, and while it deals with many serious topics, the author weaves it all magically together in such a way that will really spark your emotions. A fantastic novel!!!!
BOOK RATING - 📖📖📖📖📖 5++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Encouraged by my publisher father, I have been writing all my life. When I was five, he took my first effort to his office and brought it back in a cardboard cover with the label, 'Tom's Party'written by Diney, published by Daddy.
I've never looked back and always have some writing on the go.
To date I have written 10 romantic novels under the name of Diney Delancey (I liked the shape of the name and it sounded like a romantic novelist) and four novels as Diney Costeloe.
All are also in large print and several recently published as e-books. For more information:
Website - www.dineycosteloe.co.uk
Twitter - twitter.com/CastlehavenBook
Facebook - www.facebook.com/dineycosteloeauthor
I want to thank Blake at Head of Zeus Publishing, and the author Diney Costeloe, for the opportunity to read this novel, and take part on this blog tour. And for you lucky readers, I am lucky enough to have an excerpt for to read!!!
It was Saturday and Charlotte had an afternoon with no children, a rare thing. Margaret had suggested that they should come to her for the afternoon to give Charlotte a little time to herself. Charlotte had accepted with alacrity and Billy had taken them over for their dinner and would bring them back in time for bed.
‘What will you do with yourself?’ he teased as she got the children ready to go. She smiled across at him as she put two bottles and some nappies in a bag for Edie.
‘The ironing, of course!’
‘Ironing! You’re supposed to be having an afternoon to yourself!’
‘Silly,’ laughed Charlotte. ‘I shall go over to Clare’s and admire her baby. I haven’t seen her yet and I’ve got a little present for her. We’ll be able to have a good old chinwag.’
‘Sounds more like it,’ Billy said and picked up the bag. ‘Come on, young man,’ he called to Johnny who was already waiting by the door. ‘Let’s go and see Gr’ma.’
Charlotte watched them going out into the lane, Johnny helping to push Edie in her pram, and waved when they turned back to wave to her. Then she went back into the house to pick up the little matinée jacket she’d knitted for Clare’s new baby. She stood in the strangely silent house for a moment. A whole afternoon to herself; she could hardly believe it.
Well, make the most of it, she told herself, and putting the jacket into her bag, she set off for Clare’s.
It was a perfect October afternoon, the air crisp and cool, the sun shining from a periwinkle sky. Charlotte walked with a spring in her step as she left the village green and strode along the lane leading to the little farm cottage where Malcolm and Clare lived. A whole afternoon to herself.
As she passed the ornate gates of the manor house she heard someone shouting, calling her name, and turning she saw Marjorie Bellinger rushing down the manor drive, frantically waving her arms in the air.
‘Charlotte! Charlotte! Help!’
Charlotte ran to meet her calling, ‘Mrs Bellinger! What on earth’s the matter?’
‘It’s Peter,’ Marjorie cried, a sob in her voice. ‘He’s collapsed! I’ve tried to ring Dr Masters, but our phone seems to be out of order. Can you go for him? Tell him to be quick!’
‘I’ll find him,’ Charlotte said at once. ‘You go back to the major. I’ll be as quick as I can.’
She turned and ran back along the lane, crossing the village green to the square, red-brick house set back from the road where the doctor lived and had his surgery. She ran up to the front door and banged hard on the knocker. Her heart was pounding. She’d done just this when she’d found Miss Edie lying on the floor all those years ago. ‘Come on! Come on!’ she muttered when there was no response, the sound of the knocker echoing away into the silence of the house. She pushed open the letter box and peered through. The hall was empty. There was a stillness about the place and she was certain that there was no one at home; it was Saturday after all, Dr Masters could be anywhere, but she ran round to the back garden, just to be sure he wasn’t at work in his vegetable patch. A fork was stuck into the ground at the end of a row of potatoes, but there was no sign him.
What now? thought Charlotte, at a loss for a moment. Then she was running back across the green and pounding on the vicarage front door.
Avril Swanson opened the door and finding her on the step said, ‘Charlotte, how lovely! Come on in.’
‘Major Bellinger’s collapsed,’ Charlotte said breathlessly. ‘Mrs Bellinger’s with him but their phone’s out of order. Dr Masters is out. Can you ring for an ambulance?’
‘Of course!’ Avril turned back indoors, calling to her hus- band, David, to come quickly. Charlotte followed her inside and as Avril rang 999, Charlotte told the vicar what had happened.
‘I’ll come at once,’ he said, picking up his coat and slipping his prayer book into his pocket.
‘They’re coming,’ Avril said as she put the phone down. ‘They’ll be here as soon as they can.’
All three hurried down the lane to the manor to see if there was anything else they could do, and to be with Marjorie while she waited for the ambulance. The front door stood ajar and Avril pushed it wide, calling to Marjorie as she did so.
‘Marjorie! We’re here. The ambulance is on its way.’
They found Marjorie in Peter’s study. Peter was lying on the floor, his eyes closed, his breath rasping in his throat.
‘I can’t get him up,’ Marjorie said, her face rigid in her effort not to cry. ‘I can’t get him up off the floor. We should get him onto the couch.’
‘We’ll help,’ Avril said, ‘easy now.’ And between the four of them they managed to lift the inert form of Peter Bellinger off the floor and lie him on the sofa in the corner of the room.
He was still struggling for breath. Marjorie set a cushion under his head and then sat down beside him, holding his hand.
‘What happened?’ Avril asked softly.
‘I don’t know,’ murmured Marjorie, still fighting her tears. ‘I was in the kitchen getting lunch and I heard a crash. I called out to see if he was all right but he didn’t answer so I came in to see what had happened and there he was.’ Her lip trembled. ‘He looks awful! Do you think the ambulance’ll be long?’
‘They said they were on their way,’ Avril said. ‘I’m sure they’ll be here soon.’ She took Marjorie’s other hand and squeezed it encouragingly. Charlotte stood by the window, looking out in the hope of seeing the ambulance, and David sat in the corner, his eyes closed in quiet prayer. Silence fell around them, a silence made more profound by Peter’s stentorian breathing.
‘I’ll go out onto the green and watch for them,’ Charlotte said, unable to endure the tense silence any longer, and leaving the Swansons with Marjorie, she hurried back down the lane to wait.
When she reached the green she sat on a bench, watching the road into the village, and she thought again of the day she’d found Miss Edie on the floor. She’d run for Dr Masters then, but it had been too late. At least, she thought, Major Bellinger is still alive.
The steady clang of the ambulance’s bell brought her sharply back to the present and a moment later it swung round the corner, bell still clanging, blue light flashing on its roof. Charlotte flagged it down and directed the driver along the lane to the manor. She was aware of people coming out onto the green to see what was going on, but she kept her head down and hurried after the ambulance before they could ask questions. Village gossip would catch up with what had happened soon enough.
Hi fellow bookworms. My name is Linda and I'm a reviewer & blogger, wife & mother who loves all things books!
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