Somewhere to review books I'm reading without giving away any spoilers!
Title: A Baby on the Doorstep
Series: Orphans of Hope #2
Author: Rachel Wesson
Publication Day: Jan 22nd 2021
This is an emotive rollercoaster read set in the Depression of the 1930s and making it very clear what happened to so many people during this era. I hadn’t realised this was the second book in a series until I’d finished it and I have to say that not reading the first book didn’t detract from my enjoyment of this one.
Lauren Greenwood is endeavouring to run Hope House, an orphanage, but money is tight for everyone and for children who have no one else that is even worse. She is struggling to keep food on the table for all the orphans and to keep paying the mortgage on the home where they live. The story starts with a baby girl secretly being left on the doorstep by her father after the family lost their home and were unsure how they could keep her safe. He leaves a note telling them her name, Maisie, and promising to return for her.
This story tells how Lauren and Becky work together to look after Maisie and the children in their care with the support of some great friends. The two women are strong, supporting each other and caring for the children but the depression is making it difficult. There are more children in need of succour, less sources of funding, and a danger of them losing their home as part of the national park developments. With unrest in Germany adding to the mix, this is a moving story of caring, battling for the less fortunate and romance, a beautifully told story that keeps you guessing and turning the pages. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it and suggest you keep the tissues handy if you read it.
With several potential romances, lots of surprises – especially in a court case – this is an enthralling read I have no hesitation in highly recommending. Thanks to Bookouture and NetGalley for my copy of this book which I have voluntarily read and honestly reviewed.
Virginia, 1934: In the middle of the night, he crept through the bushes, thankful for the darkness, for the clouds covering the stars. Tenderly, he opened his bag, lifting the small bundle out. With tears in his eyes, he held her tight, not wanting to let her go. But he had no choice––it was the only way. “This is your new home, little one. You’ll be safe here.”
Distant rumblings of conflict in Europe have reached even the secluded, snow-dusted mountains of Virginia, where Lauren Greenwood faces a battle of her own. The Great Depression is crippling America, leaving millions of its victims without shoes on their feet and clothes on their backs. Hope House––the orphanage Lauren runs––is suffering more than ever.
The one thing Lauren is not short of is love. But with just a handful of dollars to her name, every day is a struggle to feed the orphans and keep a roof over their heads.
Yet she refuses to give up. When a baby is left on the porch, Lauren welcomes her with open arms. The abandoned new-born, Maisie, is left with a crumpled letter––her parents begging Lauren to look after the girl and promising to return for her one day. Lauren refuses to allow another child to fall prey to the Depression, and vows to provide little Maisie with the love and protection of a mother.
But when the debt collectors come calling, threatening to shut down the orphanage, Lauren runs out of hope. Any day now the children could be thrown onto the frozen streets, where survival is impossible.
With tragedy just around the corner, how can she ever reunite Maisie with her parents? And if she doesn’t manage to save the orphans, how will she live with herself?
A totally heartbreaking tale with a beautiful and hopeful message––when all else fails, love can save the day. Fans of Before We Were Yours, The Orphan Train and Diney Costeloe will be swept away by this emotional and totally gripping historical page-turner.
Having always been a fan of history, Rachel Wesson tries to combine her love of history with a good story.
Rachel was born in Kilkenny, Ireland but considers herself to be from the capital, Dublin, as that’s where she spent most of her life. Every Saturday Rachel’s father took her and her two sisters to the library, and to get ice-cream after, to give their mother a break. It took a long time for Rachel’s sisters to forgive her for the hours she spent choosing her books!
Rachel drove everyone nuts growing up, asking questions about what they did during the War or what side they were on in the 1916 rising etc… Finally, her Granny told her to write her stories down so people would get the pleasure of reading them. In fact, what Granny meant was everyone would get some peace while Rachel was busy writing!
When not writing, or annoying relatives, Rachel was immersed in books. Her report cards from school commented on her love of reading especially when she should have been learning. Seems you can’t read Great Expectations in Maths…
Later in life, after a doomed love affair and an unpleasant bank raid during which she defended herself with a tea tray, she headed to London for a couple of years. (There is a reason she doesn’t write romance!). She never intended staying but a chance meeting with the man of her dreams put paid to any return to Ireland. Having spent most of her career in the City, she decided something was missing. So she packed in the job and started writing. Thanks to her amazing readers, that writing turned into a career far more exciting and rewarding than any other.
Rachel lives in Surrey with her husband and three children, two boys and a girl. When not reading, writing or watching films for ‘research’ purposes, Rachel likes to hang out with her family. She also travels regularly back home – in fact she should have shares in BA and Aerlingus.
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