Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Letters From the Past, by Erica James (author), Jemma Redgrave (narrator)

Whole Story Audiobooks, April 2020

It's 1962, in the Suffolk countryside of England, and the Devereaux family is prospering and happy.

But Evelyn has a secret she's never told her beloved husband, Kit. Hope, Kit's sister, has never felt completely secure in her happiness, despite her loving husband, Evelyn's brother Edmund, her successful career writing children's books, and her adopted daughter, Annalise. Julia, married to the oldest Devereaux sibling, Arthur, has been trained most of her life, by her father and new by Arthur, to believe it's her duty to be obedient, and that anything that goes wrong is her fault.

The stepmother and matriarch of this family, Romily Devereaux-Temple, is a writer of crime fiction, and a former WWII pilot of of the ATA--the Air Transport Auxiliary. She's away, in Palm Springs in the US, to discuss a proposal to turn one of her books into a movie. Her housekeeper, Florence, is at home, though.

All of these women have secrets or insecurities. When poison pen letters start arriving, it disrupts all their lives.

Evelyn's secret dates back to World War II, and her time as a code breaker at Bletchley Park. Romily also has a secret, from her time in the ATA, that she has never fully faced up to herself, never mind revealed to anyone else. The other women are taunted with claims their husbands are unfaithful, and their insecurities make them vulnerable.

These are mostly good people, doing their best, and the bad guys are few, and, if not likable, at least recognizable and understandable. The network of relationships here is complex and strong.

This is a warm and satisfying listen. Recommended.

I bought this audiobook.

No comments:

Post a Comment