I am excited to be taking part in the #BooksOnTour #BlogTour for Shirley Dickson’s latest emotional historical tale THE LOST CHILDREN. Welcome to my stop on the tour. Scroll down to read my review.
Published September 30th 2020 by Bookouture
Book Description: As they walked towards the railway station, their mother took an envelope from her handbag. ‘I want you to keep this somewhere safe.’
‘What’s in the letter?
‘Listen carefully. You’re never to open it unless you or your sister are in real trouble. Promise me.’
England, 1943: Home is no longer safe for eight-year-old twins Molly and Jacob. Night after night wailing bombs and screeching planes skim the rooftops overhead. They cradle each other, shivering in terror, not knowing if they will live to see dawn. Their mother, Martha, has no choice but to evacuate them to the safety of the countryside.
At the train station, Martha bites back tears as she says goodbye to her precious children. Knowing she might never see them again, she gives Jacob a letter, pressing the envelope into his hands and telling him to only read it if they are in danger.
In the country, Molly and Jacob must adjust to life with strangers. Every night they dream of returning home to the arms of their beloved mother. But then the unimaginable happens. Martha is killed in an explosion, leaving the twins all alone in the world.
The war has robbed Molly and Jacob of everything – all they have left is one another. Motherless and destitute, they face the grim reality of life in an orphanage. The time has finally come for Jacob to open the letter. What secret does it hold, and could it change the course of their tragic fate? Because if they are together, they can survive anything – but what if they are torn apart?
From the bestselling author of The Orphan Sisters comes an utterly heartbreaking and unforgettable tale of two children who must lean on each other in a time of tragedy and learn the shocking truth of their past. Fans of Wives of War, Lisa Wingate and Diney Costeloe will be swept away by this sublime World War Two novel.
This is the first book I have read by Shirley Dickson, but it won’t be my last. This is a heartbreaking story set during WWII. This story is not about the was itself, but how it affects those left behind. In this story we meet eight year old twins, Molly and Jacob. They were born out of wedlock and after war breaks out, their mother leaves them with their granny while she goes to work in a munitions factory. A bombing in their hometown kills their granny and their mother finally decides to evacuate them to the countryside. Jacob and Molly face unimaginable hardships that are only worsened by Molly’s disability caused by cerebral palsy. This is their story.
The Lost Children is very well written and seemed well researched. The characters are well developed. I loved reading about the love and support that Jacob and Molly gave each other. I just wanted to reach into the pages and hug them both and bring them home with me. The secondary characters were also wonderful. Seeing the relationships between the various residents and the twins grow was beautiful. This story was full of ups and downs. It seemed like things were going well, then there was another situation that knocked them for a loop. I can’t believe how strong they were. This story had my emotions all over the place. I felt sympathy, love, disdain, anger, excitement and satisfaction. The setting and descriptions were well written and allowed me to visualize what what was happening. This is a story that will engage you from start to finish. One that lovers of Historical Fiction will certainly enjoy. I recommend this one. I was gifted a copy of this book upon request. The rating and opinions shared are my own.
About the Author: Shirley Dickson was born and grew up in the seaside town of South Shields. She left school at fifteen and can’t remember a time when she didn’t write. She entered her first short story competition in ‘School Friend’ when she was eleven. After Shirley retired from auxiliary nursing, she was able to devote her time to writing.After living in various locations, she settled under the big skies of Northumberland and has lived with her husband in the same house for over forty years. Shirley has three daughters and four grandchildren and likes nothing better than family gatherings.