16 March 2023
Woolworth Series #8
My thanks to the publisher for my copy of this book
and the opportunity to be part of the blog tour
After losing her beloved fiancé at Ypres in 1917, seventeen-year-old Elizabeth Billington faces a lonely future estranged from her upper-class parents due to her association with Charlie Sayers and his working-class family. No longer able to live under her parent’s roof she is taken in by Charlie’s father, escaping the suffocating demands of her parents. Betty soon learns all too well about the realities of life after an accident at the Woolwich Arsenal munitions works. Spotting an advertisement for a nearby job at Woolworths, Betty starts on a new and thrilling journey starting at the bottom of the employment ladder in the well-known store. Her work journey leads her to Ramsgate in Kent to work in a newly built store and with it the chance of marriage, but can she ever forget Charlie and the promise she made to him…?
📖 My review...
After losing her fiancé Charlie at the Battle of Ypres Elizabeth Billington is disowned by her middle class parents so she takes refuge with Charlie’s working class family and for the first time in her life, Elizabeth must find the means of supporting herself. After a brief time working in an ammunitions factory Betty, as she is now known, takes up a lowly position at the nearby F W Woolworths store. Over time Betty starts grow in confidence making new friends in the process however, she must also learn how to cope with the challenges which lie ahead.
The Woolworth Girl’s Promise is a heartwarming story about love and loss and also about the continuing grief and sadness which was felt by so many women who had lost their loved ones during the First World War. The historical spect of the story feels beautifully authentic and I especially loved the detailed description of how the Woolworth store operated and of the opportunities which were available for women to become part of the general workforce.
Whilst this is the eighth book in the popular Woolworth Girls series of historical sagas it is perfectly possible to enjoy the story as a standalone and yet for those who are familiar with the series it’s lovely to have the backstory of one of the popular characters. The author has made this series into something rather special bringing to life both the history and the camaraderie which existed amongst the working classes during the first half of the twentieth century and of course shining a spotlight on Woolworths which is so much part of our shared history.
Elaine Everest, author of bestselling novels The Woolworths Girls, The Butlins Girls, Christmas at Woolworths and The Teashop Girls, was born and brought up in north-west Kent, where many of her books are set. She has been a freelance writer for twenty-seven years and has written widely for women’s magazines and national newspapers, both short stories and features. Her non-fiction books for dog owners have been very popular and led to her broadcasting on radio about our four-legged friends. Elaine has been heard discussing many topics on radio, from canine subjects to living with a husband under her feet when redundancy looms.
Twitter @elaineeverest #TheWoolworthGirlsPromise #WoolworthGirls
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